ALDS 2021: Red Sox vs. Rays General Discussion Thread

DeadlySplitter

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That’s a wild set of odds, and makes me wonder if their projection system knows how to handle Baz and his 3 MLB starts.
I think Fangraphs has admitted their models don't work on the Rays lately. THey were given only 25% chance to make the playoffs in March.
 

Hank Scorpio

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Yeah, wouldn’t that put the Rays at something like 2-1 underdogs in this series? That would be insane.
 

Daniel_Son

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Ugh. I am in Florida. I lost MLB Network when I cut cable package to save money a year ago.
I have watched games on MLBTV via my computer.
Any suggestions how I might be able to see game 3 (and possibly 4 or 5 if they are not on FS1?)
MLB TV doesn't broadcast playoff games?

EDIT: Sorry, should've googled first. First time subscriber this year!
 

dynomite

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This is interesting. The rescheduled marathon falls on the same day as game 4. Which means it may be a matinee game 4
View: https://twitter.com/jtomase/status/1445866004396003328
That could be, as usual, a cluster with street closures and security measures in place on Monday. (A nice tradition, though!) I wonder whether the league gives that game an evening timeslot -- by the time of peak ballgame traffic ~530pm they might be able to have most streets re-opened?

If the Dodgers win the NLWC Game tonight, I see Tomase is saying "2/3pm window," but wouldn't the easiest thing to do Monday be something like this:
1pm - Astros @ White Sox Game 4 (if necessary) on FS1
4pm - Brewers @ Braves Game 3 on TBS
7pm - Rays @ Red Sox Game 4 (if necessary) on FS1
Late Game (930pm?) - Giants @ Dodgers Game 3 on TBS
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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That could be, as usual, a cluster with street closures and security measures in place on Monday. (A nice tradition, though!) I wonder whether the league gives that game an evening timeslot -- by the time of peak ballgame traffic ~530pm they might be able to have most streets re-opened?

If the Dodgers win the NLWC Game tonight, I see Tomase is saying "2/3pm window," but wouldn't the easiest thing to do Monday be something like this:
1pm - Astros @ White Sox Game 4 (if necessary) on FS1
4pm - Brewers @ Braves Game 3 on TBS
7pm - Rays @ Red Sox Game 4 (if necessary) on FS1
Late Game (930pm?) - Giants @ Dodgers Game 3 on TBS
If the Cards win tonight, they'd be hosting that last game, which might complicate the late game start since there'd be no game west of the central time zone. Might mean they have to shift the schedule a bit earlier to avoid too much game overlap. Maybe do something like Rays @ Sox at noon, Brewers @ Braves at 3pm, Astros @ White Sox at 6pm, Giants @ Cards at 9pm (8pm central).

It's not like Boston doesn't know how to have the Red Sox and the marathon occur simultaneously, so I would expect the biggest objection to an early start at Fenway would come from Fox. Red Sox are a ratings draw across the country, so I imagine Fox want them in the most prime slot they can, which is not noon or 1pm on a Monday (even if it's a holiday).
 

dynomite

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Can you hit the highlights for those of us that can’t see past the paywall?
Basically after reviewing data from a Sale start on 9/1 they noticed he had more extension toward home than any other start — and got suspicious that the rubber might be tilted, especially given that the Rays ERA is ~ 2 runs better at home than on the road. Buried far down that MLB apparently measured things with a laser and all seems to be Kosher.

Pitchers have described feeling different on the Trop mound while identifying only a certain je ne sais quoi about its distinctiveness. Some compare the Trop mound to standing atop a mountain. Hitters have complained of the difficulty of picking up the ball there.

But upon learning of the pitcher extension data, Sox hitters wondered whether anything about the mound might have been in play, particularly given that the home/road extension differences had only started to show up in 2020. As they took their measurements, there was particular curiosity about whether the rubber was sloped in a way that would increase leverage for pitchers to drive toward the plate, thus potentially increasing extension.
 

Lose Remerswaal

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Wait ... does this allow them to get around the eligibility rules with Iglesias????
This question has been asked and answered at least a half dozen times already, and the basic facts of the situation have not changed. The only thing that matters is this: Was he a member of the organization as of September 1?

if the answer is “No” then there is no way he can be on the post season roster.
 

E5 Yaz

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Wait ... does this allow them to get around the eligibility rules with Iglesias????
Why would you think that taking him off the 40-man roster suddenly makes him eligible for the postseason?
 

cantor44

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And, besides my abject and ridiculous stupidity... I don't see any reason why they would outright him to Worcester. Feels like part of some complicated machination, or working some kind of loophole, that's why I asked. What's to gain by doing this now? Kinda confusing ...
 

nvalvo

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And, besides my abject and ridiculous stupidity... I don't see any reason why they would outright him to Worcester. Feels like part of some complicated machination, or working some kind of loophole, that's why I asked. What's to gain by doing this now? Kinda confusing ...
If they want to add someone to the roster who isn't currently on the 40-man, but who was (as the rules require) in the organization at midseason, they need a 40-man spot.

I'll admit that in looking at the players who fit those criteria, I don't see a lot of obvious candidates for a call up. Muñoz, Cordero, Bazardo, Seabold, and Lopez are all on the 40-man already. (I'll assume they wouldn't call up Casas to DH, although that would certainly be must-see TV.)

Utilityman Ryan Fitzgerald seems like the only guy I would consider for the ALDS who isn't yet on the 40. He would make sense if you were trying to cover a lot of positions with a single emergency backup, maybe because you want to put an injured JD Martínez on the roster but you're not 100% certain he'll be ready to play. Fitzgerald played all over the field and hit .270/.350/.512 between Portland and Worcester. It wouldn't be crazy if the FO decided that as of today, he's a better player than Araúz or even Duran, and he can cover all the positions they can in one roster spot.

Do I think that's especially likely? I do not.
 

cantor44

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If they want to add someone to the roster who isn't currently on the 40-man, but who was (as the rules require) in the organization at midseason, they need a 40-man spot.

I'll admit that in looking at the players who fit those criteria, I don't see a lot of obvious candidates for a call up. Muñoz, Cordero, Bazardo, Seabold, and Lopez are all on the 40-man already. (I'll assume they wouldn't call up Casas to DH, although that would certainly be must-see TV.)

Utilityman Ryan Fitzgerald seems like the only guy I would consider for the ALDS who isn't yet on the 40. He would make sense if you were trying to cover a lot of positions with a single emergency backup, maybe because you want to put an injured JD Martínez on the roster but you're not 100% certain he'll be ready to play. Fitzgerald played all over the field and hit .270/.350/.512 between Portland and Worcester. It wouldn't be crazy if the FO decided that as of today, he's a better player than Araúz or even Duran, and he can cover all the positions they can in one roster spot.

Do I think that's especially likely? I do not.
And doesn't have to pass through waivers to get assigned to Worcester? He's on a major league contract, no? Seemed like none of that happened ...
 

Lose Remerswaal

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With Munoz it could be as simple as a salary saving situation, putting him back on minor league salary instead of big league. As you know, ownership doesn't want to pay what it takes to make this a playoff team. With Iglesias I don't think this is uncommon with vets who are about to become Free Agents who don't have a chance of making a postseason roster for whatever reason

Posted above before I saw your post. Who are you referring to? Iglesias is a Free Agent. Munoz is fungible.
 

nvalvo

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And doesn't have to pass through waivers to get assigned to Worcester? He's on a major league contract, no? Seemed like none of that happened ...
Are you still talking about Iglesias? He's going to be an FA after the season, and he isn't eligible to play for anyone still playing, so no, I don't expect a waiver claim.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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These moves are actually pretty simple. Valdez and Santana haven't been re-instated from the COVID IL yet. Removing Munoz and Iglesias from the 40-man gives them the space to activate those guys if necessary. Not saying they will be, but they're eligible if they find a need (and certainly Iglesias is not).

Outrighting Iglesias rather than just releasing him probably allows him to stay in the dugout/clubhouse as team personnel, which is apparently something everyone wants.
 

JOBU

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Basically after reviewing data from a Sale start on 9/1 they noticed he had more extension toward home than any other start — and got suspicious that the rubber might be tilted, especially given that the Rays ERA is ~ 2 runs better at home than on the road. Buried far down that MLB apparently measured things with a laser and all seems to be Kosher.
Interesting. Thank you.
 

E5 Yaz

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JD, Sale and Santana replace Wong, Arauz and Durran
 

dynomite

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JD, Sale and Santana replace Wong, Arauz and Durran
Good that JD made it. Do folks expect him to start Game 1? Or is this more of a PH in Game 1, see when he improves enough to start at DH kind of plan?

Also, 2021 All Star Matt Barnes doesn't even make the ALDS roster. It makes sense, but I still don't understand what happened. Regression was expected. Complete collapse (an ERA of 9.26 after July) was not.

Casas as a LH bench bat is definitely interesting. And if I understand correctly wouldn’t start his service time.
But the Sox just announced Casas is headed to the Arizona Fall League (which begins 10/13) so this was not likely. But as an aside it was relatively commonplace last year for rookies to debut in the playoffs (obviously much of that had to due with COVID craziness and the lack of MiLB games): Kiriloff on the Twins, McClanahan on the Rays, and Weathers on the Padres all made their debuts in the 2020 playoffs: https://www.mlb.com/news/big-league-debuts-in-postseason
 

Harry Hooper

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I hope I eat these words, but I hate Perez getting the nod over Wong and Santana over Arauz or Duran
 

chawson

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Man, what’s the actual deal with Barnes? Seems like it could be any number of things, from mechanics, sticky stuff restrictions, lingering COVID stuff, psychological issues, who knows. Being left off the postseason roster is a long way to fall for a guy who was given a $19m extension for being arguably the best closer in baseball over the first half of the season.
 

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Man, what’s the actual deal with Barnes? Seems like it could be any number of things, from mechanics, sticky stuff restrictions, lingering COVID stuff, psychological issues, who knows. Being left off the postseason roster is a long way to fall for a guy who was given a $19m extension for being arguably the best closer in baseball over the first half of the season.
It's mind blowing. It does make one wonder what the hell they're going to do with him going forward, but first things first.

Sawamura has also had a very weird year, especially if you look month by month.
 

chawson

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I hope I eat these words, but I hate Perez getting the nod over Wong and Santana over Arauz or Duran
As someone who’s been hyped on a Danny Santana breakout all season, I have no choice but to double down.

At the very least, he’s been a plus CF and his speed and defensive versatility are incredibly valuable. He’s put up a 1.109 OPS in Worcester in 77 PAs this year, and I’d trust him at the plate now more than I did at the beginning of the season. His bat also may be in a better place at the moment than Arroyo’s, which looks kinda broken.
 

themactavish

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If the Sox advance beyond this series, it's hard to imagine Barnes being added in the next series, not unless there is some perceived mechanical issue that supposedly gets fixed (or Barnes comes at least to believe it's been fixed, even if it's all in his head). You'd have to imagine that his confidence after being left off the roster would be pretty low, and absent some psychological boost to it, the next-series version of Barnes presumably will still be (more?) damaged goods. The farther the Sox advance, the greater the fall will seem for Barnes if he's left off additional playoff rosters. I always wondered what happened to Daniel Bard when he went from being great to a mess after the experiment to convert him to a starter. Maybe it was mechanics, or perhaps a combination of psychology and mechanics (cause and effect can be hard to discern), but it always seemed like the problem with Bard was a mind problem, not a purely physical one. It will be interesting to see how all this affects Barnes moving forward, assuming things get "worse" by being left off roster after roster.
 

dynomite

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As someone who’s been hyped on a Danny Santana breakout all season, I have no choice but to double down.

At the very least, he’s been a plus CF and his speed and defensive versatility are incredibly valuable. He’s put up a 1.109 OPS in Worcester in 77 PAs this year, and I’d trust him at the plate now more than I did at the beginning of the season. His bat also may be in a better place at the moment than Arroyo’s, which looks kinda broken.
Yeah close call between Duran and Santana for me.

Obviously Duran has more straight line speed (96th percentile on Statcast to Santana’s 74th percentile) but as you say, Santana does offer positional flexibility, a better bat, and ultimately I would guess they trust him more as pinch runner as well — a career SB success rate of 75% (75 in 101 attempts) and lots of experience at this level.
 

brandonchristensen

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True in that April/May Barnes would be desperately useful right now, but ironically given the team they’re facing it’s par for the course.
I also don’t love Danny Santana over Duran if you need that off the bench replacement. The numbers say Danny is probably better, but watching him - I can’t imagine how.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Not having a closer is so wild. Alex has a massive handicap.
I see Whitlock as the de facto closer but with more flexibility to come into games earlier if the situation calls for it, which isn’t the worst thing in the world.

Not having first-half 2021 Barnes is unquestionably a blow, but one softened by Robles’ emergence as a somewhat dependable late-inning reliever.
 

Harry Hooper

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As someone who’s been hyped on a Danny Santana breakout all season, I have no choice but to double down.

At the very least, he’s been a plus CF and his speed and defensive versatility are incredibly valuable. He’s put up a 1.109 OPS in Worcester in 77 PAs this year, and I’d trust him at the plate now more than I did at the beginning of the season. His bat also may be in a better place at the moment than Arroyo’s, which looks kinda broken.
Ok, you convinced me on Santana!

Whether it's physical or mental, Barnes is much less effective if he doesn't have his top fastball going. If another week of recovery from COVID restores his oomph, then maybe he's active if the Sox get to the next round. BrooksBaseball has him still down about 2 mph in Sept/Oct appearances relative to the first half of the season.
 

shaggydog2000

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I always wondered what happened to Daniel Bard when he went from being great to a mess after the experiment to convert him to a starter. Maybe it was mechanics, or perhaps a combination of psychology and mechanics (cause and effect can be hard to discern), but it always seemed like the problem with Bard was a mind problem, not a purely physical one. It will be interesting to see how all this affects Barnes moving forward, assuming things get "worse" by being left off roster after roster.
Bard had Thoracic outlet syndrome.

https://www.providencejournal.com/article/20160314/SPORTS/160319664

So it wasn't a "mind problem."
 

OurF'ingCity

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I also don’t love Danny Santana over Duran if you need that off the bench replacement. The numbers say Danny is probably better, but watching him - I can’t imagine how.
He’s more versatile - he can play infield and outfield, whereas Duran can only play outfield. I think that’s more or less the sole reason for choosing one over the other.