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4/19/08 Game Analysis: Boston 5 Texas 3


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#1 berstch

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Posted 19 April 2008 - 09:46 PM

Manny with another unreal home run when it matters most. As scary as it sounds, this may be the most locked in we have seen him since he's played here. He's had three late inning go ahead home runs in the last week if you count the one off Mussina last Saturday. 6 home runs and 20 RBI through 19 games is just a great start.

I felt like we were going to see another poor outing from Lester after mixing some seeing eye singles with some frozen ropes in the first two innings. The mound visit from Farrell seemed to turn around the outing. Lester began to attack the zone and finished with a scoreless 3.2 innings with 5 K's and 2 walks after the visit. This was definitely his best outing since the game in Oakland. Hopefully he can carry the confidence he gained after the mound visit into his next start.

I mentioned in the game thread that there was a lot of posters on SoSH that wanted Julio Lugo on this team as far back as 2005 that I can remember. When he eventually signed after the 2006 season, I still think the consensus was that this guy was the right short stop for this team. Obviously we all agree that this is no longer the case, but what has changed in Lugo's game since he got here from the guy we were expecting? I remember the particularly bad season he had in 2006 after the trade to LA, but not many here seemed too concerned about that when he signed. All that I see now is a bad baseball player. 7 GIDP's and 6 errors thus far is unacceptable. Is there any place to point back to where his struggles began, let alone what exactly they are?

#2 Lollardfish

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Posted 19 April 2008 - 09:58 PM

Manny with another unreal home run when it matters most. As scary as it sounds, this may be the most locked in we have seen him since he's played here. He's had three late inning go ahead home runs in the last week if you count the one off Mussina last Saturday. 6 home runs and 20 RBI through 19 games is just a great start.


I've been thinking about what a dominant Manny will do for Ortiz. For the last few years, the perception has been that Manny was no longer the most fearsome hitter in the lineup, but that he was protecting Ortiz. So far, early this season, that's clearly changed. It ought to mean that Ortiz gets better pitches to hit. I was thinking that when he broke his bat in the first, that a 3-1 fastball was coming. It came. Papi missed it. But he's going to see a lot more hitters'-count fastballs, so long as Manny is fearsome.

#3 Morgan's Magic Snowplow


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Posted 19 April 2008 - 10:26 PM

I mentioned in the game thread that there was a lot of posters on SoSH that wanted Julio Lugo on this team as far back as 2005 that I can remember. When he eventually signed after the 2006 season, I still think the consensus was that this guy was the right short stop for this team. Obviously we all agree that this is no longer the case, but what has changed in Lugo's game since he got here from the guy we were expecting? I remember the particularly bad season he had in 2006 after the trade to LA, but not many here seemed too concerned about that when he signed. All that I see now is a bad baseball player. 7 GIDP's and 6 errors thus far is unacceptable. Is there any place to point back to where his struggles began, let alone what exactly they are?


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I think this might be the most frustrating part of Lugo's season so far. He is not even producing the usual pu-pu platter of suck at the plate. Its just all weak ground balls. It doesn't even matter where a pitch is located. Even stuff up in the zone he is feebly topping every time.

#4 satyadaimoku


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Posted 19 April 2008 - 10:39 PM

Obviously we all agree that this is no longer the case, but what has changed in Lugo's game since he got here from the guy we were expecting? I remember the particularly bad season he had in 2006 after the trade to LA, but not many here seemed too concerned about that when he signed.

He didn't have a bad season in 2006 after the trade to LA, he had a bad one-third of a season. His overall numbers for 2006 were solid. And indeed, his bottom line stat numbers were consistanly decent from 2003 to 2006. Lugo never seemed like a great deal for the contract he got, but there aren't that many shortstops who can consistantly put up decent, .750 OPS type seasons, and that's what Lugo looked like during the '06-'07 offseason.

Sometimes good bets don't pay out. And it is still a little early to write Lugo off completely - although we're getting there.

#5 berstch

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Posted 19 April 2008 - 10:42 PM

I think this might be the most frustrating part of Lugo's season so far. He is not even producing the usual pu-pu platter of suck at the plate. Its just all weak ground balls. It doesn't even matter where a pitch is located. Even stuff up in the zone he is feebly topping every time.

2 Extra Base hits in 62 at bats backs this up. I've tried to find how many of his hits are infield singles, but I can't find a sortable stat for that. He had another tonight. A .274 average doesn't sound horrible, but I don't think he's hitting .220 if you take out the infield hits. He also has just 2 walks. His double play tonight came on the first pitch. When you're struggling to hit this badly, the least you could do is to try to have some lengthy at bats and work the count. He's just going up hacking with no apparent plan.

Edited by berstch, 19 April 2008 - 10:44 PM.


#6 Ananti


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Posted 19 April 2008 - 10:50 PM

2 Extra Base hits in 62 at bats backs this up. I've tried to find how many of his hits are infield singles, but I can't find a sortable stat for that. He had another tonight. A .274 average doesn't sound horrible, but I don't think he's hitting .220 if you take out the infield hits. He also has just 2 walks. His double play tonight came on the first pitch. When you're struggling to hit this badly, the least you could do is to try to have some lengthy at bats and work the count. He's just going up hacking with no apparent plan.


On the radio they said this was his 7th infield hit.

#7 berstch

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Posted 19 April 2008 - 10:58 PM

On the radio they said this was his 7th infield hit.

So, if you turn those hits into outs he's hitting .161. If you ignore the infield hits and base his average on the remaining 55 AB's, he's 10 for 55 with a .182 average. Also, keep in mind that one of those infield hits came in Cleveland the other night on a botched sac bunt attempt. Splitting hairs? Yes, but as bad as the numbers are, I think they are lying. He's actually worse in my opinion.

Edited by berstch, 19 April 2008 - 10:58 PM.


#8 syoo8

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Posted 19 April 2008 - 11:03 PM

2 Extra Base hits in 62 at bats backs this up. I've tried to find how many of his hits are infield singles, but I can't find a sortable stat for that. He had another tonight. A .274 average doesn't sound horrible, but I don't think he's hitting .220 if you take out the infield hits. He also has just 2 walks. His double play tonight came on the first pitch. When you're struggling to hit this badly, the least you could do is to try to have some lengthy at bats and work the count. He's just going up hacking with no apparent plan.


By my count, he has made 10 hits that were not infield hits. That's .169. (One can find this information on baseball-reference.com gamelogs.)

That, combined with only 2 XBH, and .305 SLG, plus 6 errors in 16 games... it makes sense that people are getting mad.

BTW Lugo's cumulative WPA is down there with Papi, lower than Kevin Cash.

#9 Eric Van


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Posted 20 April 2008 - 12:21 AM

Manny with another unreal home run when it matters most. As scary as it sounds, this may be the most locked in we have seen him since he's played here. He's had three late inning go ahead home runs in the last week if you count the one off Mussina last Saturday. 6 home runs and 20 RBI through 19 games is just a great start.

From 2002 to 2006 Manny averaged 3.96 WPA, which is quite good, typically ranking 15th to 20th in all of MLB.

After 19 games this year, he's at 2.22, leading MLB by a big margin. 1.72 of that has come in the last 8 games, and 1.10 of that has come on 3 swings: the 2B off of Mussina and the HRs off of Borowski and Benoit.

And he was 0.95 in 14 post-season games last year. In these last 33 games (20% of a season's worth of play) he's at a 15.55 pace per 162, which is nearly double the insane figures Papi put up in 2005 and 2006 (8.93, 8.05). (Not to imply that Papi never did as well in as short a stretch, of course.) It's been one of the more amazing stretches of clutch hitting in recent team memory.

#10 ScubaSteveAvery


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Posted 20 April 2008 - 12:37 AM

I'm not sure where to put this, and I don't think a separate thread would warrant much discussion. But Manny, Youkilis, and Pedroia all went to the Athletes Performance Institute this offseason, and all three lead the team with 25 hits (Drew comes in second with 17). Also, all three played a large part in not only tonight's success but also the success of the season so far. I just think its an interesting observation - that the three players who went to the institute are the three players who are absolutely raking so far. Obviously part of their success is that all three are great hitters in general, but its kinda hard to ignore the relationship between the institute and their clear success. I'm curious to know if this may lead the FO to encourage other players to head out west in future offseasons or if this is just a sss/one time flukey thing?

#11 Dick Drago

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Posted 20 April 2008 - 09:04 AM

I'm not sure where to put this, and I don't think a separate thread would warrant much discussion. But Manny, Youkilis, and Pedroia all went to the Athletes Performance Institute this offseason, and all three lead the team with 25 hits (Drew comes in second with 17). Also, all three played a large part in not only tonight's success but also the success of the season so far. I just think its an interesting observation - that the three players who went to the institute are the three players who are absolutely raking so far. Obviously part of their success is that all three are great hitters in general, but its kinda hard to ignore the relationship between the institute and their clear success. I'm curious to know if this may lead the FO to encourage other players to head out west in future offseasons or if this is just a sss/one time flukey thing?



Youk in particular looks great. I remember when he was in the minors there was talk about his weight, from Gammons in particular. He's really worked at his defense and his conditioning, and seems like one of those guys who gets the most out of his ability.

Manny is a thing of beauty to watch. One thing I notice about him is that he seems to follow through on his swing more than most hitters. It gets lost sometimes during his HR poses, but particularly when he goes the other way it appears his stroke finishes just a bit longer than other guys, that double VS Mussina a few weeks ago is a good example. Almost like a tennis player finishing his stroke before running for the next ball, there is a pause as he follows through.

#12 sibpin

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Posted 20 April 2008 - 06:02 PM

I was surprised that the two doubles in the first inning of this game - Ellsbury to center and Youkilis to right - were not triples. Maybe they were playing it safe because it was the first inning, but both throws were short and off-line... the margin on Ellsbury's was shorter than Youk's, but not out of range of his speed advantage. Perhaps the Sox runners took Hamilton's bad throwing into account for future use - e.g. the Pedroia double in the 8th inning of Sunday afternoon's game.

Edited by sibpin, 20 April 2008 - 06:02 PM.