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Monday, April 11, 2005
Weekend Roundup

I only watched parts of the games on Friday and Sunday night -- Terrible, I know -- For some reason, even though the Twins games are the ones that I least like to miss, I inevitably have something else scheduled.

  • 4-2 after the first week. I should be pleased, but I'm not really. The Sox were in every game, and could have won them all. Still, 4-2, the best record in the AL, playing two division rivals, I can't really complain.

  • I was going to complain about the strike zone Santana was getting last night, but I know that's not what cost us the game. It's the hitters job to adjust to the zone being called. It's one thing if you get caught looking at pitches called for strikes outside your zone in the first few innings, it's another if you're stuck looking when the tying run is in the on-deck circle in the 9th. Ozuna, Dye, and Harris all watched balls -- Hawk would call them 'pitcher's pitches' -- get called for strikes after the zone had been established in the previous 6 innings of baseball.

    That being said, the last thing Santana needs is help by giving him a wide plate.

  • Joe Crede did not lose this game. Your third baseman is supposed to try and field every ball hit his way. Just because Uribe looked like he had it covered behind Crede doesn't mean that Joe should let the ball go. This is not the outfield where you have time to call out "I've got it." I'd have more of a problem with Crede if he didn't attempt to make that play.

  • I've been less than impressed with Iguchi's defense. He's been solid, don't get me wrong, but he doesn't have nearly the range of Harris or Uribe out there. In Sunday's game there was a ball hit back up the middle that Uribe would have easily converted, and Harris would have gotten to it quickly but had trouble with the throw, Iguchi rounded it off instead of backhanding it -- something Kaz Matsui had problems with last season -- and was well late on the throw to first because of it.

    On the positive side, Iguchi has started out well with the bat. He actually leads the team in batting average. In an anomaly of sorts, his OBP is less than his AVG at this moment due to a couple of sacrifice flies.

  • Jon Garland had some nasty movement early on in the game on Saturday. In an interview with Rooney and Farmer, he said he didn't throw many curves in his first outing of the season. I can't say that I noticed, but that probably has something to do with not walking a single batter, as his curveball is the one pitch that his struggles with most to control. He gave up a bunch of hits (10), though a few of them were bloops and turf-jobs, but looked in control for most of the game. If he pitches the same way, peppering the zone with his sinker, he's going to be very effective at USCF. He'll get a lot more groundball outs than he did at the Rollerdome, which because of it's fast infield and hard turf, gave up about 17% more hits than the average ballpark last season.

  • I learned that sometimes you've got to go against the book.
    • Friday -- Konerko (career .079/.125/.158 versus Kyle Lohse) hit a key HR that helped the Sox to victory
    • Saturday -- Timo Perez (general suckitude), for some inexplicable reason batting 5th, hit the go-ahead HR off of Brad Radke after popping out weakly to the left side in both of his previous at-bats.
    • Sunday -- Carl Everett (.253/.313/389 vs. LHP) goes 2-3 against one of the best pitchers in baseball in the form of left-hander Johan Santana.

  • Carlos Silva is out until at least the All-Star break due to a torn meniscus. David Gassner will take his place in the rotation. I don't want to get you too excited, because he'll probably come up and go 6-2 with a league average ERA while filling in, but his minor league stats scream "Felix Diaz."

  • Speaking of 6th starters, I listened to part of Brandon McCarthy's first start of the season over the internet. The announcers were very impressed. He had one helluva line, 7IP 2H 1ER 1BB 10K. Though, Columbus, the Yankee's AAA affiliate, is a rather punchless line-up. It's nice to know that when one of the starters inevitably goes down, there's a viable replacement waiting in the wings.

  • I'm really pissed off at the schedule makers. There's no need for the Sox to play a night game on get-away day and then have a day game to start the next series. They're going to get into Cleveland after 2AM EDT, and need to be at the park early for a 2PM EDT start.

  • The Sox do have one thing working for them Monday. Freddy Garcia is a notoriously good day-game pitcher. He was 9-0 with a 2.43 ERA last season, and is 34-10 with a 3.37 ERA in day games on his career.