ALDS (BOS/HOU) series discussion thread (GM1@4:08PM, GM2@2:05PM)

Al Zarilla

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Pom and Sale and pray for hail!!!
Actually, the Braves had two other halfway decent starters in 1948: Bill Voiselle and Vern Bickford. Their BWARs were close to that of Spahn himself that year. Spahn did have a bit of an off year for him in 1948. One of the great baseball poems of all time though. Full version:

First we’ll use Spahn, then we’ll use Sain,
Then an off day, followed by rain.
Back will come Spahn, followed by Sain,
And followed, we hope, by two days of rain.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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Hopefully with the very real chance of rain Sunday and Monday MLB announces game 3 start time soon. I wonder if they know weather will be iffy, they'd make it an earlier start? Would give them more room to playoff and avoid a rain out perhaps.

Living out of State, this is always my biggest pet peeve every year. Schedule always pops up last minute and then I'm left scrambling to get a hotel room, or cancel others I've booked on speculation.
 

The Talented Allen Ripley

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Why not put Joe Kelly in the rotation instead of Porcello or Rodriquez? He was a 10 game winner for the Cards and I think 10 wins for us in 2015? He's healthy now and we need 2 right handed starters. I might put Fister in because he seems to have turned it around. I think Kelly's worth a shot.
Don't know much about baseball, do you?
 

KillerBs

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I start with premise that Astros are markedly better team then Sox and we need to get lucky/be smart to win this series. Haven't felt like such underdogs going into play-offs since the legendaryJimy Williams was at the helm.

Most obvious route for series win is riding 2 dominant Sale outings to low scoring victories and finding way to steal another one.

I would plan for Sale for 7+ and Kimbrell for up to 2 IPs in Game 1, if we have a lead. In this ideal scenario, the pen (outside Kimbrell) gets another day of rest.

I am inclined to agree with those that suggest pushing Pomeranz back to Game 3, on the premise that he could use the extra couple days rest and he gives us best chance of winning non-Sale game vs. McCullers (I think) back at home. Plus it gives us better chance to spread out potential extensive critical Price usage in non-Sale/Pomeranz starts AND allows Price to go at McCann, Beltran and Fisher (?) or force the 'stros to make the platoon move early, which could pay dividends later in that game.

If so, who to start Game 2 from among Edro, Porcello, Fister? I am thinking Porcello is best option here. As bad as he has been, I still think he has a better chance to give us 5+ decent innings than Fister. Hey he's a CYA winner! I worry a little about giving the ball to Edro on the road in the play-offs. This is a bullpen game, with the starter on the shortest of leashes, like real short, with Price warming in 2nd or 3rd if need be. Think of it as the Porcello-Price-Kelly-Carson Smith game. Kimbrell limited to 1 IP for the save here, if he is coming off long outing night before. Gives us a shot vs Kuechel.

That would leave Game 4 to Edro on long rest vs Morton. I would not be surprised to get 6 strong from him in that setting, if the series goes that far. Hopefully pen is relatively rested after Pommy goes 6+ in Game 3. If Price pitches 3 innings in Game 2, is he available for 2 more in Game 4 on 2 days rest?
 

uk_sox_fan

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Why not put Joe Kelly in the rotation instead of Porcello or Rodriquez? He was a 10 game winner for the Cards and I think 10 wins for us in 2015? He's healthy now and we need 2 right handed starters. I might put Fister in because he seems to have turned it around. I think Kelly's worth a shot.
I'm thinking the answer is Alex Scherff.
Scouting Report: Right-hander with a solid frame, he was the best prep pitcher in the state of Texas in 2017. Fastball sits 93-95 mph, tops out at 98 mph. Potential plus changeup. Breaking balls will need development. May need to clean up his mechanics.
He's 19 (and I remember when I was 19 I wasn't afraid of anything!) and has had a lot of success pitching in Texas. He only recently signed so he doesn't have a lot of mileage on his arm this season and so will come in fresh. A guy that hits 98 and has a plus change (he didn't get to use it much in HS since most batters there couldn't catch up to his FB so the Astros won't have video to study and figure him out) will keep them off-balance all day. Slot him in to Game 2 and push Pom to Fenway on Sunday - I think it's a true no-brainer!
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I would plan for Sale for 7+ and Kimbrell for up to 2 IPs in Game 1, if we have a lead. In this ideal scenario, the pen (outside Kimbrell) gets another day of rest.
I don't think you ever plan to use Kimbrel for more than three outs. If the game situation calls for bringing him into the 8th, so be it. But planning for him to get (up to) six outs is foolish, particularly doing so in lieu of using someone else just to "save" the rest of the pen for the next game. In fact, planning out any kind of bullpen strategy involving assigning guys to certain innings or certain games rather than everyone being prepared to pitch every game is also a bit foolish. You might have an ideal to hope for (like only needing to use Sale and Kimbrel to win Game 1) but you make decisions based on the situation at hand. Other than the next day's starter, I'd argue that the bullpen has to be all hands on deck every game. No saving guys, no resting guys (unless they desperately need it)...always use the guy that strategically makes the most sense at whatever point in the game you need him.
 

nvalvo

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I am inclined to agree with those that suggest pushing Pomeranz back to Game 3, on the premise that he could use the extra couple days rest and he gives us best chance of winning non-Sale game vs. McCullers (I think) back at home. Plus it gives us better chance to spread out potential extensive critical Price usage in non-Sale/Pomeranz starts AND allows Price to go at McCann, Beltran and Fisher (?) or force the 'stros to make the platoon move early, which could pay dividends later in that game.

If so, who to start Game 2 from among Edro, Porcello, Fister? I am thinking Porcello is best option here. As bad as he has been, I still think he has a better chance to give us 5+ decent innings than Fister. Hey he's a CYA winner! I worry a little about giving the ball to Edro on the road in the play-offs. This is a bullpen game, with the starter on the shortest of leashes, like real short, with Price warming in 2nd or 3rd if need be. Think of it as the Porcello-Price-Kelly-Carson Smith game. Kimbrell limited to 1 IP for the save here, if he is coming off long outing night before. Gives us a shot vs Kuechel.
I'm not sure I'm with you, but let's think it through.

Porcello has also been much, much better on the road. Although he has been yielding too many HR everywhere he's pitched, he's allowed a parsimonious .306 OBP on the road and a disastrous .345 OBP at home. Some of that is BABIP, but he also has a higher walk rate at home.

Sale is good anywhere, but better on the road; he has a much higher HR rate at Fenway than elsewhere. Pomeranz has been a tick better at home. Rodriguez' stats are mixed, but I think the difference is mostly an elevated BABIP at home. I think his DIPS numbers are better at home.

So if we go Sale (Hou) - Porcello (Hou) - Pomeranz (Bos) - Rodriguez (Bos) - Sale (Hou) we can maximize everyone's home-road splits, while also putting off days after Porcello's and Rodriguez' starts if the bullpen gets a heavy workload.

But that might not be the most important factor, especially because we're talking about one particular park, one where Porcello has been awful in a tiny sample.

It also costs you a chance to potentially pitch Sale and Pomeranz four times if you're behind. Sale - Pomeranz - off day - Rodriguez - Sale (3 days) - Pomeranz (3 days). Now, that's probably stupid, like the kinds of things that the Dodgers have done in recent years with Kershaw, on their way to losing a ton of postseason games. But you could do it.

I'm honestly not sure what I would do.
 

ricopetro6

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any guesses on the start time if there is a game Monday? I assume, if the Yanks are in, they would get prime time. So, a 2:00 or a 5:00? Since Friday's game is a 2:00 start, would MLB give them another 2:00?
Horrible times for those working, and those trying to make plans or purchase tickets.
 

glennhoffmania

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I'm confused. Isn't game 1 the only game on Thu? Why is it at 4 instead of like 8?

Never mind. For some reason CBS isn't showing the CLE game scheduled for Thu.
 

jerry casale

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Actually, the Braves had two other halfway decent starters in 1948: Bill Voiselle and Vern Bickford. Their BWARs were close to that of Spahn himself that year. Spahn did have a bit of an off year for him in 1948. One of the great baseball poems of all time though. Full version:

First we’ll use Spahn, then we’ll use Sain,
Then an off day, followed by rain.
Back will come Spahn, followed by Sain,
And followed, we hope, by two days of rain.
Thanks, I've heard the "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain for 60 years and never heard the full version.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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So now that everyone knows the Yankees are in and will get prime time, can we get a schedule for Sunday and Monday (if)?
Apparently not yet ... extremely frustrating. I guess MLB just assumes no one lives out of State or has to actually make plans to get to a game or games.
 

RedOctober3829

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any guesses on the start time if there is a game Monday? I assume, if the Yanks are in, they would get prime time. So, a 2:00 or a 5:00? Since Friday's game is a 2:00 start, would MLB give them another 2:00?
Horrible times for those working, and those trying to make plans or purchase tickets.
They won't determine game times for Monday until they can know how many AL Game 4's there are. NL G3's are Monday so those are definite and they will be in Chicago and Arizona. Judging by TBS's TV schedule that is online, they have game times at 5:00 and 8:30. If there are 2 AL games, you could see something like either 2:00/5:30 or 4:00/7:30. If there is one game, it will be in prime time.
 

AB in DC

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Moved from other thread:

Whatever one wants to say about Hanley, he was better than the Astros' DHs.
It will be interesting to see how much they use Beltran during the series. He was their primary DH (106 of 162 games) for the year, but he's atrocious against lefties (34 wRC+). So he should probably be saved as a late-innning PH against a RHP reliever.

They also used their backup catcher (Gattis/McCann) as DH 31 times, with better overall results, so we might see that instead.
 

ricopetro6

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wouldn't they have to wait to see if who, i
They won't determine game times for Monday until they can know how many AL Game 4's there are. NL G3's are Monday so those are definite and they will be in Chicago and Arizona. Judging by TBS's TV schedule that is online, they have game times at 5:00 and 8:30. If there are 2 AL games, you could see something like either 2:00/5:30 or 4:00/7:30. If there is one game, it will be in prime time.
they won't know this until after Sunday's games though. Will they really wait until after all sunday's games are played to announce Monday start times?
No wonder there are still so many available seats...people need to know start times(especially for Monday a work day) before they can purchase tickets.
Sticking the Sox with another 2:00 start would be brutal.
 

RedOctober3829

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wouldn't they have to wait to see if who, i

they won't know this until after Sunday's games though. Will they really wait until after all sunday's games are played to announce Monday start times?
No wonder there are still so many available seats...people need to know start times(especially for Monday a work day) before they can purchase tickets.
Sticking the Sox with another 2:00 start would be brutal.
They won't have to wait until after Sunday. If a series is 1-1, they'll determine a game time for Monday. Then, they'll do an if necessary time for the other series. If both are 2-0, they'll set if necessary times beforehand and adjust on the fly if there is 1 game. I didn't mean to imply that they had to wait until after Sunday. They'll make a decision on Saturday probably.
 

Ale Xander

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wouldn't they have to wait to see if who, i

they won't know this until after Sunday's games though. Will they really wait until after all sunday's games are played to announce Monday start times?
No wonder there are still so many available seats...people need to know start times(especially for Monday a work day) before they can purchase tickets.
Sticking the Sox with another 2:00 start would be brutal.
Monday is an off day for a lot of people. (federal and state employees, bank tellers, teachers, etc.)

It's a holiday in most states (about 2/3), including MA, RI, CT, NY, NH ME
 

Al Zarilla

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Thanks, I've heard the "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain for 60 years and never heard the full version.
You're welcome. I love those baseball oldies but goodies.

Sox game seems like it'll never get here. To borrow from a favorite musician, whom I'm really sad is no longer with us: The Waiting is the Hardest Part.
 

joe dokes

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Monday is an off day for a lot of people. (federal and state employees, bank tellers, teachers, etc.)

It's a holiday in most states (about 2/3), including MA, RI, CT, NY, NH ME

It was the Columbus Day holiday weekend, combined with afternoon starts and extra innings that made games 4 and 5 in the 2004 ALCS even more surreal than they already were. Like "I don't know what day it is" surreal.
 

Plympton91

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So game 3 is also in the middle of the afternoon.

Thus, after a regular season in which about 5 of every 7 games are night games, all of the Red Sox first 3 playoff games are in the afternoon.

Just another reason why I've been able to put this made for TV crap shoot in proper context post-2004, 7, and 13.

Is there any demonstrable benefit to the Red Sox playing nothing but day games in the ESPN/FOX Sports Championship Tournament?
 

RedOctober3829

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So game 3 is also in the middle of the afternoon.

Thus, after a regular season in which about 5 of every 7 games are night games, all of the Red Sox first 3 playoff games are in the afternoon.

Just another reason why I've been able to put this made for TV crap shoot in proper context post-2004, 7, and 13.

Is there any demonstrable benefit to the Red Sox playing nothing but day games in the ESPN/FOX Sports Championship Tournament?
At least they are all day games and not being made to play a day game after a night game. Although if the game goes long on Thursday, it will be a short turnaround.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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yanks-Clev at 7:38 on Sun..wonder why they decided Sox at 2:38 instead of 5:00.?
On Sat, the earlier game is a 5:30 start
Football. Starting at 2:38 puts you in a window where first pitch likely happens during halftime of whatever game is on. Hopefully you capture some of the folks who start turning channels until the second half starts.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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The time is ok by me. Now I can come up Saturday, and head to the game Sunday and drive back home afterwards.
 

richgedman'sghost

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So game 3 is also in the middle of the afternoon.

Thus, after a regular season in which about 5 of every 7 games are night games, all of the Red Sox first 3 playoff games are in the afternoon.

Just another reason why I've been able to put this made for TV crap shoot in proper context post-2004, 7, and 13.

Is there any demonstrable benefit to the Red Sox playing nothing but day games in the ESPN/FOX Sports Championship Tournament?
But but think about the children. LOL ...There is an old adage that baseball ratings would increase if there were more day playoff games...Don't you remember sitting around with your dad on Saturday afternoon watching Vin Scully announce World Series games? Not saying I agree with that theory but it's out there.
Ps.. it's officially the TBS/MLBNet/ESPN/Fox postseason tourney..LMAO
 

Al Zarilla

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Football. Starting at 2:38 puts you in a window where first pitch likely happens during halftime of whatever game is on. Hopefully you capture some of the folks who start turning channels until the second half starts.
Wait a while and baseball may be the national pastime again between the kneeling/standing, the refereeing and the concussions. I don't know how much legs the first one has though. Nobody answer this post though, please.
 

InsideTheParker

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As I walked though the room, the guys on mlbn were talking about how much of a difference maker Verlander is/isn't for the Astros. Missed almost all of their discussion. A quick google search turned up this (http://www.espn.com/mlb/player/batvspitch/_/id/6341/justin-verlander) and except for Moreland, Holt, and Nunez, it doesn't look good. Are there better numbers somewhere that are not so discouraging?
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Well, this is less than encouraging. Guess the timing could have been worse, assuming that the worst of it has occurred in the last 2-3 days rather than this being the beginning.
 

Harry Hooper

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Not sure why he signed here if he was gonna have problems with how the team was going to use him. He should have made that clear during negotiations.

As long as he doesn't take some shears and cut his arm off, things will be OK.



Well, this is less than encouraging. Guess the timing could have been worse, assuming that the worst of it has occurred in the last 2-3 days rather than this being the beginning.
Maybe they caught colds playing in the cold and rain last Saturday.
 

Hank Scorpio

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A bunch of guys being sick to start the playoffs is really just perfect... wasn't half the team staggering through death throes back in April too?
 

RedOctober3829

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Chad Finn tweeted that Costas/Kaat will be doing G1 on MLB Network then Joe Davis/AJP/Morosi will be taking over on FS1 for the remainder of the series. I'll be pining for Dave/Jerry/Eck by the end of this series.