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Hansen up, Pauley Down


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#1 LahoudOrBillyC


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 02:56 PM

Per Globe

#2 Fratboy


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 02:58 PM

Per Globe

Amalie can't even spell Hansen's name right. That's a sure sign his star has fallen.

Good to see the Kotteras/Brown fight was for naught.

#3 Main Ingredient

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 02:58 PM

That didn't take long... this will be interesting.

#4 tims4wins


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:00 PM

Hope he can get into a low leverage situation in the next day or 2 and have a good appearance to boost his confidence. He's been dominating in the Bucket, but a bad first appearance up here could shake his confidence. I think the Sox need this guy to be pretty good this year if they want to accomplish their goals. I'm hoping he can give them something similar to what MDC gave them last year.

#5 yecul


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:01 PM

Well I'm surprised. I thought they would wait on him a bit and let him build some confidence and show a track record of success. But you can't deny his performance thus far.

It'd be great to get him in there a couple times while he's up in moderately pressured spots (ie, not mopup crap but not late inning 1-run games either).

Let him have success so you can get something going. Glad to see it. This will be fun to watch.

#6 wibi


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:02 PM

That didn't take long... this will be interesting.


Interesting is an understatement. I am actually considering buying MLB.tv just to watch these next few games to see how Hansen pitches.

Obviously the FO thinks its sink or swim time with Hansen.

#7 LahoudOrBillyC


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:03 PM

What is Hansen's status vis-a-vis options? He signed a major league contract in 2005, if I recall correctly?

#8 SoxScout


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:04 PM

In case anyone missed this in his AAP thread yesterday: Change in mechanics rejuvenates Craig Hansen

“I’ve gone back to the way I pitched at St. John’s,” the 6-foot-6, 230-pound right-hander said. “My mechanics have changed.”

“I decided to do it,” he said. “Halfway through last year I was in a slump, so I decided, you know what, ‘If I’m going to fail, I’m going to do it myself.’ ”

He is, in effect, short-arming the ball the way he did until turning pro. It might not be the style some coaches prefer, but the results are impossible to deny. He is still throwing in the mid- to high-90s and, even better for him, his slider has regained its movement.

“Basically, I’m staying on a workout routine that’s working for me,” he said. “It’s been working since spring training. I was able to get a lot of things done in spring training that I needed to. Pitching in different situations, getting myself in different situations and pitching my way through it. It helped out a lot.

“Definitely, I feel a confidence boost,” he added. “There are days I go out there now when maybe I’m not feeling as well, maybe I’m a little tired due to a long trip or something, and I’m able to get through it because I know my routine is solid, day in and day out. That’s the thing that gets you through on the days that you don’t have your best stuff.”


Table
Pawtucket G IP ERA RA WHIP FIP xERA ERC BABIP BR/9 H/9 HR/9 K/9 BB/9 K/BB
Craig Hansen 8 12.3 0.00 0.73 0.57 2.06 -0.79 0.07 .121 5.1 2.2 0.0 9.5 2.9 3.3

Edited by SoxScout, 23 April 2008 - 03:07 PM.


#9 Buzzkill Pauley


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:06 PM

Good call to bring up a reliever -- DiceK & Lester coming up right after using 5 pitchers last night, and with the pen already short-staffed from MDC's flu bug.

Where do we send the "Get Well Soon" card?

#10 SoxFanPJ


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:07 PM

Is Delcarmen going to be available tonight? If not this may just be a temporary call up with the flu bug going around the team and needing another reliever.

#11 Crazy Puppy

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:07 PM

What is Hansen's status vis-a-vis options? He signed a major league contract in 2005, if I recall correctly?

I believe 2008 is his last option year. As a player who used all three of his options within his first 5 pro seasons, he qualified for a 4th option year, but I'm reasonably certain that's this year.

#12 NickEsasky


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:08 PM

Hansen is in the last year of his 4 year major league deal he signed when drafted so it's really time for the Red Sox to see what he has at the major league level. This move makes sense with the bullpen being used quite a bit so far this season and his success thus far in Pawtucket.

#13 Bowlerman9


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:09 PM

I believe 2008 is his last option year. As a player who used all three of his options within his first 5 pro seasons, he qualified for a 4th option year, but I'm reasonably certain that's this year.


This is correct.

#14 LahoudOrBillyC


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:09 PM

I believe 2008 is his last option year. As a player who used all three of his options within his first 5 pro seasons, he qualified for a 4th option year, but I'm reasonably certain that's this year.

This is what I believe as well. So they can't send him down after this year without going through waivers, and there is no way he is getting through waivers. I assume this is part of their decision process here. They don't have the luxury of a lot of patience.

#15 doc

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:11 PM

What is Hansen's status vis-a-vis options? He signed a major league contract in 2005, if I recall correctly?

The contract only meant he was on the 40 man roster to start (I think) but has nothing to do with his options to the minors.

Options"
After three years as a pro, a player must be protected on a team's 40-man roster, or he is eligible for the Rule 5 draft (more on that later). Once he's served those three years, and assuming he is added to the 40-man roster, his club then has what are called "options" on him.

When a player is on the 40-man roster but not on the 25-man Major League roster, he is on "optional assignment." One common misconception about the rules is that a player may only be "optioned out" three times. Actually, each player has three option years, and he can be sent up and down as many times as the club chooses within those three seasons.

When you hear that a player is "out of options," that means he's been on the 40-man roster during three different seasons, beginning with his fourth as a pro, and to be sent down again he'll have to clear waivers (more on those below).


ESPN

#16 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:12 PM

I have to imagine that he's only going to be up for a few days, right? Aren't the Sox now carrying 13 pitchers?

#17 Foulkey Reese


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:15 PM

I have to imagine that he's only going to be up for a few days, right? Aren't the Sox now carrying 13 pitchers?

Let's all pray that Mike Timlin develops a case of pink eye that requires a trip to the DL like Wilson Betemit did.

#18 Bowlerman9


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:18 PM

The contract only meant he was on the 40 man roster to start (I think) but has nothing to do with his options to the minors.
ESPN


If you read the article you quoted, he had to be optioned every time he was sent to the minors. He would have been out of options after 2007 if not for the magic 4th year loophole. This is officially his last option year.

#19 Quintanariffic

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:24 PM

This is great to see, and I hope they use him as yecul suggested, but it has to be temporary unless someone in the pen comes down with the Hellenic flu (or pink eye). It's good to know that Lowrie can play 2B, SS and 3B, so along with the flexibility Youks has (1B, 3B, LF), and that of Drew (LF/CF/RF) and Coco and Ellsbury (both LF/CF and RF in a pinch) the team likely feels pretty good about their coverage should someone go down.

#20 TomRicardo


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:26 PM

I have to imagine that he's only going to be up for a few days, right? Aren't the Sox now carrying 13 pitchers?


Hopefully Javier Lopez will be joining his good buddies Bryan Corey and Kyle Snyder in Pawtucket at the end of this ordeal.

#21 Ananti


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:27 PM

Lopez is has been much better than Timlin. Timlin should go first.

#22 berstch

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:40 PM

Lopez is has been much better than Timlin. Timlin should go first.

Nothing like a reactionary post in April. Timlin had similar problems last year coming off the DL where he didn't look like he could get an out for over a week. People called for his head then, and then praised him when he finished the season with strong numbers. In five years with the Red Sox, Mike Timlin has not had one bad year. He's been as consistent as they come for this team over that time frame. Do you think Ortiz should be benched too? It's April, the Red Sox are 15-7, and all that you can come up with is crap like this? Please.

#23 SoxScout


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:42 PM

``He’s been throwing the ball great,’’ said Sox manager Terry Francona. ``And he has some flexibility.’’

Manny Delcarmen, one of a number of Sox players who has been ill, is feeling ``so so,’’ Francona reported, so his status for tonight is questionable.

It makes Hansen a prime candidate for work tonight.

http://www.beloblog...._hansen_pr.html

#24 SoxFanPJ


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:47 PM

Nothing like a reactionary post in April. Timlin had similar problems last year coming off the DL where he didn't look like he could get an out for over a week. People called for his head then, and then praised him when he finished the season with strong numbers. In five years with the Red Sox, Mike Timlin has not had one bad year. He's been as consistent as they come for this team over that time frame. Do you think Ortiz should be benched too? It's April, the Red Sox are 15-7, and all that you can come up with is crap like this? Please.


Timlin has had one BAD year check out 2006. 4.36 ERA 8 blown saves, opponents hitting .305 against him. He is 42 and has given up 10 hits in 4.1 IP this year. There are very legitimate concerns that he is past his expiration date.

#25 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:50 PM

The Red Sox aren't going to release a guy making $3M+ based on a few bad outings, though. Hansen will get into a few games here, and go back down. If he continues to pitch well he'll be back, and I'd say it's likely to be because someone gets hurt or Aardsma's walk rate catches up with him. The cries for Timlin or Lopez to be released will continue, but I don't think it's going to happen for quite a while.

Hell, look at how long they kept Embree around for in '05, even though it was so obvious to many that he was cooked. Performance among relievers is pretty volatile, and this isn't the kind of organization to make quick decisions on veterans.

#26 LahoudOrBillyC


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:53 PM

Also, sending Hansen down means you still have Hansen. Releasing Timlin means you have one less pitcher. They likely want both pitchers available to pitch.

#27 Morassofnegativity


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:53 PM

Lopez has done pretty well this year vs. lefties. You never know with bullpen guys.

I like bringing up Hansen. I'm curious to see if his movement/velocity are back and how he does against MLB hitters. Pretty exciting.

#28 Quintanariffic

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 03:58 PM

The Red Sox aren't going to release a guy making $3M+ based on a few bad outings, though. Hansen will get into a few games here, and go back down. If he continues to pitch well he'll be back, and I'd say it's likely to be because someone gets hurt or Aardsma's walk rate catches up with him. The cries for Timlin or Lopez to be released will continue, but I don't think it's going to happen for quite a while.

Hell, look at how long they kept Embree around for in '05, even though it was so obvious to many that he was cooked. Performance among relievers is pretty volatile, and this isn't the kind of organization to make quick decisions on veterans.

Quoted for truth. This especially applies to veterans that are liked in the clubhouse (i.e. Embree, Millar). The only possible exception is Offerman, but no one liked him anyway.

#29 Manny's Hammies

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Posted 23 April 2008 - 10:28 PM

For what it's worth, Hansen had a better line that it looked like he had tonight. 0.2 IP 1K 1H -- would've been a clean inning if Pedroia doesn't drop the popout. No question at all that his stuff is back -- he looked better than I've ever seen him at the ML level. Maybe got a bit rattled after Pedroia's error, but his stuff looked lights out, particularly the slider which has never been seen outside of college. Also, NESN gun had him at 97 FWIW...

He should be back up shortly...

#30 Bowlerman9


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  • 5,033 posts

Posted 23 April 2008 - 10:44 PM

For what it's worth, Hansen had a better line that it looked like he had tonight. 0.2 IP 1K 1H -- would've been a clean inning if Pedroia doesn't drop the popout. No question at all that his stuff is back -- he looked better than I've ever seen him at the ML level. Maybe got a bit rattled after Pedroia's error, but his stuff looked lights out, particularly the slider which has never been seen outside of college. Also, NESN gun had him at 97 FWIW...

He should be back up shortly...


...he pitched the inning before that too.

1.2 IP, 2 H, 3K, 1 HR. Grooved a fastball that Kotchman crushed. I agree he looked pretty good, but giving up that run was huge at the time.

#31 tims4wins


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 10:48 PM

For what it's worth, Hansen had a better line that it looked like he had tonight. 0.2 IP 1K 1H -- would've been a clean inning if Pedroia doesn't drop the popout. No question at all that his stuff is back -- he looked better than I've ever seen him at the ML level. Maybe got a bit rattled after Pedroia's error, but his stuff looked lights out, particularly the slider which has never been seen outside of college. Also, NESN gun had him at 97 FWIW...

He should be back up shortly...

Also agree that he looked pretty good. His slider was far, far better than I remember it from the last few years, particularly on that one strikeout of Mathis (IIRC). Just nasty movement. Would be interested in seeing some PitchFX data from the game.

His fastball, however, despite ringing in at 97 MPH looked a bit straight to me. My impression of Hansen from previous years was that his fastball had a lot of movement to it, but tonight it just looked straight as an arrow. 97 MPH just doesn't mean all that much when it's dead straight. So I'd also be interested in seeing some PitchFX data on his fastball tonight to see if it was as straight as my eyes were telling me or if it was actually moving.

#32 SoxScout


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 10:54 PM

Posted Image

There is also this: http://38.99.108.6/p.....mlb_bosmlb_1/

On his sliders:

5 balls
2 fouls
4 called strikes
2 swinging strikes
0 BIP

Edited by SoxScout, 23 April 2008 - 11:01 PM.


#33 DieHard3


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 11:00 PM

Also agree that he looked pretty good. His slider was far, far better than I remember it from the last few years, particularly on that one strikeout of Mathis (IIRC). Just nasty movement. Would be interested in seeing some PitchFX data from the game.

His fastball, however, despite ringing in at 97 MPH looked a bit straight to me. My impression of Hansen from previous years was that his fastball had a lot of movement to it, but tonight it just looked straight as an arrow. 97 MPH just doesn't mean all that much when it's dead straight. So I'd also be interested in seeing some PitchFX data on his fastball tonight to see if it was as straight as my eyes were telling me or if it was actually moving.


I agree; I didn't see a pitcher with a great sinker, but rather a very tall pitcher who throws pretty straight but on a downward plane. More importantly, he also had absolutely no command of either pitch. If you can't consistently throw the ball to the corners of the strike zone you're going to get torched no matter how good your velocity is, and he hung one slider for each one he threw that was devastating.

Thankfully, it is clear that the raw "stuff" is, in fact, back to where it was when he was first drafted, which means there is hope for him to develop into a good-to-great reliever. However, he also looked as raw to me tonight as he did when he was first summoned in September 2005. It appears that the Red Sox/Hansen totally wasted two years of his development by switching his mechanics. He's got to go back down and get guaranteed regular work in order to learn how to command his pitches in the remaining 4 months of the minor league season, so that he can be of use in September and beyond.

It's also interesting that he's pitching from the absolute farthest point on the rubber toward third base, I wonder who suggested that and why.

Edited by DieHard3, 23 April 2008 - 11:02 PM.


#34 SoxScout


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 11:06 PM

It appears that the Red Sox/Hansen totally wasted two years of his development by switching his mechanics.

Gammons says it was Boras who forced him to change his motion to something less violent after he was drafted. He did the same thing with Luke Hochevar. Allowing him to stick with it is just as bad, if not worse, I suppose.

http://sports.aol.co...-top-prospects/

Craig Hansen, I saw him on the Cape [ed. -- the Cape Cod League] and the only better pitcher I've ever seen was Billy Wagner, and he's going to the Hall of Fame. Hansen was a short-armed out of his delivery guy with a great sinker, slider. And now it's all cross-seamers thrown up high in the zone and extend your arm, you know? And he throws it 98 mph and they hit it out at 198 mph. ...

He needs to be coached by people here and not by the people in California at the Scott Boras clinics. It's the same thing with [Luke] Hochevar last year when Kansas City gave him all that money, they gave him $4 million as a four-seam, curveball guy and they changed him into a two-seamer, slider guy this winter. He's got a 5.80 ERA at Double A which for $4 million doesn't hack it. With these agents there's too much tinkering. Agents don't know more about baseball than the people that coach it.


Edited by SoxScout, 23 April 2008 - 11:07 PM.


#35 jtn46


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Posted 23 April 2008 - 11:57 PM

The slider did look great. I actually thought he commanded it pretty well too. I liked how confident he was in backdooring it to lefties.

The fastball is another story. Velocity is great, but he had a hard time putting it where he wants. Maybe there were some nerves involved though, we can't really judge a guy too much on this one appearance.

Overall, an encouraging outing because we finally got to see the slider that's been MIA since we signed him.

#36 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 24 April 2008 - 07:29 AM

It's pretty startling to see how different his "old" mechanics are from the motion he was using when he first came up to the bigs in '05 and the motion the Sox/Boras/his fairy godmother had him using in '06. He's definitely shortarming the ball now, but frankly his stuff looked better last night than any other time I've seen him pitch. Whoever suggested to him to change his mechanics ought to be shot at dawn; he's throwing much harder and his stuff has more bite than it ever did with the smoothed out motion.

The slider looked excellent last night; his fastball needs work. I would disagree with DH3 regarding command of the slider, I thought he commanded it well. I would agree with DH3 about his rawness, however; his fastball is straight and he lacked command of it last night. The HR to Kotchman was supposed to be inside but it drifted over the plate.

#37 Manny's Hammies

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 07:37 AM

...he pitched the inning before that too.

1.2 IP, 2 H, 3K, 1 HR. Grooved a fastball that Kotchman crushed. I agree he looked pretty good, but giving up that run was huge at the time.


Whoops -- hadn't seen the previous inning and had just assumed Tito wouldn't use him for more than 1 IP.

At any rate, if you only saw the second IP as I did, it sounds like you saw a guy whose nerves settled down.

Also, I disagree about his FB -- at least in the inning I saw. He was commanding both pitches and other than the pitch Hunter hit, the ball had a lot of movement and life.

#38 Oil Can's Liver


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Posted 24 April 2008 - 07:54 AM

Also agree that he looked pretty good. His slider was far, far better than I remember it from the last few years, particularly on that one strikeout of Mathis (IIRC). Just nasty movement. Would be interested in seeing some PitchFX data from the game.

His fastball, however, despite ringing in at 97 MPH looked a bit straight to me. My impression of Hansen from previous years was that his fastball had a lot of movement to it, but tonight it just looked straight as an arrow. 97 MPH just doesn't mean all that much when it's dead straight. So I'd also be interested in seeing some PitchFX data on his fastball tonight to see if it was as straight as my eyes were telling me or if it was actually moving.


I remember a scout commenting on how his slider had lost it's snap...where it had once been called a "disappearing" slider... It looked filthy last night, equally tough for lefties and righties to pick up.

Edited by Oil Can's Liver, 24 April 2008 - 07:54 AM.


#39 biollante


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Posted 24 April 2008 - 08:08 AM

His fastball had some pop last night. It looks much more difficult to hit when the breaking stuff is working. I couldn't really tell how straight it was from where I was sitting but the batter's reactions seemed to say they weren't ready for it. Glad to see improvement. The Sox will do what they can to keep as many pitchers as possible.

#40 Green Monster

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 08:08 AM

It's pretty startling to see how different his "old" mechanics are from the motion he was using when he first came up to the bigs in '05


If anyone has the time, it would be nice to see a side by side comparison.

#41 86spike


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Posted 24 April 2008 - 09:08 AM

so Hansen goes back down today so that Masterson can make the emergency start, right?

Probably for the best for now... pat him on the back, tell him not to worry about that HR and getting the L, and get him steady work in AAA until we need another RP.

Last night was marred by the HR, but otherwise, he looked good. Hopefully the kid will keep his head high... I remain unconvinced that he's got the mental toughness to survive, but being able to look at last night as a positive step forward is a good start in that direction.

#42 Manny's Hammies

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Posted 24 April 2008 - 10:58 AM

I remain unconvinced that he's got the mental toughness to survive, but being able to look at last night as a positive step forward is a good start in that direction.

In fairness, though, I don't think throwing a 22 y/o kid into a pennant race with altered mechanics as they did in '05 is a recipe for mental fortitude. Again, having only seen him in his second inning of work last night, he looked, very, very good for all but one pitch. Lots of movement and hitters like Matthews looked just completely overmatched.

I hope he's back soon, if only b/c he could probably also use a little time hanging with Manny D, who struggled quite a bit himself until turning into a guy with an ERA nearly under 2 last year.