How to get back in this thing

E5 Yaz

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But any team in the playoffs has a punchers chance at winning the WS. It's not the NBA.
I think this year is different ... considering how far ahead of the field the Yankees and Astros have been. I'm usually on the side of "any playoff spot is better than none at all," but this season feels different and, given the FA2B, I'd say this is the outlier season where you want to be realistic instead of hopeful
 

Cesar Crespo

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I think this year is different ... considering how far ahead of the field the Yankees and Astros have been. I'm usually on the side of "any playoff spot is better than none at all," but this season feels different and, given the FA2B, I'd say this is the outlier season where you want to be realistic instead of hopeful
It largely depends on what the difference in value is from being realistic vs being hopeful. If there is a haul to be had, they should probably take it.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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Yes, considering the 1st round is only 3 games. But any team in the playoffs has a punchers chance at winning the WS. It's not the NBA.
I understand how it works. This also isn't the NHL where seeding/playoff success has no correlation. The Sox are a below average hitting team. They're a below average pitching team. "Get lucky" shouldn't be the driving factor on the future of your franchise.

7 wild card teams have won the world series. Each one of them had something to lean on heading into the playoffs.

2019 Nationals - top 5 offense, Scherzer/Strasburg combo to carry playoff series.

2014 Giants - top 10 offense, solid defense, great bullpen, completely dominant MadBum.

2011 Cardinals - Top 3 offenses in baseball, great starting pitcher depth, excellent bullpen.

2004 Red Sox - don't know much about these guys.

2002 Angel's - top 5 offensive unit, top 5 pitching unit.

1997 Marlins - Cinderella story, still had a top 5 pitching group.

In retrospect, while each one of those teams had a wild card spot, they were also good enough on their own merit to win a World Series. The addition of the extra wild card games doesn't change the calculus that you still need to be a good baseball team to win in the playoffs.

So, if the Sox aren't good with the bat, and they aren't good on the mound...then we just pray everyone sucks and we get super lucky?

Nobody here wants the team to be bad. But it is. The front office should have one job right now - pivot quickly and maximize the assets that aren't in their future plans.
 

Rovin Romine

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So, if the Sox aren't good with the bat, and they aren't good on the mound...
Remind me again if "the Sox" were using the same rotation and starters this past week-and-a-half as they were in early June?

Also remind me whether or not a team can add post-season players before the trade deadline?

That's pretty much been the entire discussion around here for the last few weeks.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Nobody here wants the team to be bad. But it is. The front office should have one job right now - pivot quickly and maximize the assets that aren't in their future plans.
Like I said in a later post, it largely depends on the difference in value between selling now and not. Though some would argue any return is better than none. I'm not against selling and maximizing value. But if they somehow make the playoffs, they have a chance of winning the WS. I think there's a really good chance the team doesn't make the playoffs though. Like 90%+ chance. One that justifies selling if the value is there.

I'd almost argue they have a better shot of winning the WS if they make the playoffs than actually making the playoffs.

It's also July 30th. If the Red Sox manage to make the playoffs, they will definitely have something to lean on. Such as winning lots of games at a high % in August and September.
 

E5 Yaz

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Remind me again if "the Sox" were using the same rotation and starters this past week-and-a-half as they were in early June?
Eovaldi has returned with, thus far, a decrease in velocity and effectiveness.
Are you suggesting that Wacha and Hill will return as effective as they were before the injuries, and that will help the Red Sox get back into a WC spot?
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Remind me again if "the Sox" were using the same rotation and starters this past week-and-a-half as they were in early June?

Also remind me whether or not a team can add post-season players before the trade deadline?

That's pretty much been the entire discussion around here for the last few weeks.
They haven’t gotten a win from a starter in over a month. But what is the ideal rotation you have in your mind? Sale seems unlikely to return this year; if he does, hard to believe it will be as a starter. Paxton is yet to throw live BP. Let’s imagine Hill and Wacha come back. So you’ve got…

Eovaldi 96 era+
Pivetta 98
Wacha 159
Hill 102
Crawford 103

So, this is fine, and it’s an improvement over what they’ve been throwing out there…but is it really good? If Eovaldi pitches like last year and Pivetta like he did in the playoffs and Wacha like he did earlier this year and Crawford continues to improve….it’s a lot of ifs especially considering the schedule.
 

Cesar Crespo

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They haven’t gotten a win from a starter in over a month. But what is the ideal rotation you have in your mind? Sale seems unlikely to return this year; if he does, hard to believe it will be as a starter. Paxton is yet to throw live BP. Let’s imagine Hill and Wacha come back. So you’ve got…

Eovaldi 96 era+
Pivetta 98
Wacha 159
Hill 102
Crawford 103

So, this is fine, and it’s an improvement over what they’ve been throwing out there…but is it really good? If Eovaldi pitches like last year and Pivetta like he did in the playoffs and Wacha like he did earlier this year and Crawford continues to improve….it’s a lot of ifs especially considering the schedule.
To be fair, winning a WS requires a lot of if's to go right. A lot more for this particularly team, but winning a WS is hard.
 

Rovin Romine

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Eovaldi has returned with, thus far, a decrease in velocity and effectiveness.
Are you suggesting that Wacha and Hill will return as effective as they were before the injuries, and that will help the Red Sox get back into a WC spot?
No, I'm suggesting that last night's lineup and starter would not be starting a post-season game.

Which might well be academic, depending on what the FO decides to do re: the trade deadline.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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Remind me again if "the Sox" were using the same rotation and starters this past week-and-a-half as they were in early June?

Also remind me whether or not a team can add post-season players before the trade deadline?

That's pretty much been the entire discussion around here for the last few weeks.
Well, that and if 5 teams are playing for 1 spot, or 7 are playing for 3. Amirite?
 

Rovin Romine

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Well, for a chance of pace on the day, let's update the "How to get back in this thing thread" with something moderately interesting.

Trevor Story has just been reported to have a hairline fracture in his wrist stemming from his HBP. He's shut down from swinging for 10-14 days.

IMO, this is likely one of those last straw events.

A Devers, Xander, JD, Story lineup is very credible if anchored by a league average Vaz, Verdugo (and perhaps Arroyo.) A Josh Bell type rental would give you 5 good bats in a row and remove the 1B problem. But now - do you acquire two bats? Do you hope Arroyo shines a bit at 2B?

I don't know if this changes the FO calculus, but it certainly changes the feel for me. I'm not sure what their internal projections are on all the dinged up pieces - Sale, Paxton, Devers, Barnes, Story, et al., but if there's significant question marks around Paxton, or a mild one around Devers, I think they become sellers.
 

Rovin Romine

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OK. Bumping the thread, even though we have the poll thread going on.

As of today, 4 games out of the WC 3 spot, with BAL, CLE, and CWS between them and the spot. (WC2 and WC3 is currently held by TBR/SEA, depending on what the tiebreaker would be between them.) They need to win 5 games more than BAL, CLE, CWS, TBR/SEA. They'll have 52 game to do that in.

A reasonable target? TBR/SEA are currently 7 games above .500 at a .533 WP - that's an 86 win pace, and they'd finish at 11 games above .500.

For back of the envelope purposes, say Boston needs 87 wins to be in the mix. Yes, I know that does not take into strength of schedule for the other teams. That means 12 games above .500, and they're currently 1 below.

I think it might be useful to view the rest of our schedule (after today's game) in the following chunks.

Chunk 1:

Day off​
Home: 2 ATL, 1 BAL, 3 NYY.​
Day off​
Road: 3 @ PIT, 3 @ BAL.​

I'll pause here. That's 12 games. The final BAL game in this stretch is game number 122 (40 left.) PIT is a weak team, and BAL is the easiest AL East foe to handle and a direct WC rival. How many do they need to win here? I'm guessing they need to take 1 from ATL, 2 or ideally 3 from BAL, 1 or 2 from NYY and 3 from PIT to stay even or gain ground? 7-5. Perhaps doable if they win all 3 PIT games. (That's 1 game above .500.)

***
Chunk 2:

A day off followed by a lot of flip-flop travel:​
3 TOR, 3 TBR, 3 @ MIN, 3 TEX, 3 @ TBR.​
Then a day off.​

This is another 12 game stretch, featuring 9 games against WC opponents. The final TBR game is game number 138. (24 games left.)

Hopefully they'll have some reinforcements by this time, Fenway-Hosmer? Story? Strahm? Good-Barnes? Back on track Pivetta and Eovaldi? While they have to win prior to Chunk 2, I think those games may not be so uneven as they seem now. . .provided we get those reinforcements. But they need to do well here. (At least 2 games above .500, bringing them to 3 up.)

***
Chunk 3:

Staccato:​
3 @ BAL, a day off, 2 NYY, a day off, 3 KC, a day off.​

This is a shorter chunk - only 8 games. But I think they'll likely have played themselves in or out of the mix by the beginning of this one. Again, BAL and KC are teams they can win against, especially with a theoretical healthy line-up. The final game is game number 146. (16 games left.) If they split NYY, win 2 out 3 v. BAL or KC, and sweep the other. . .4 above .500, bringing them to 7 up.

***
Chunk 4:

Final meatgrinder:​
2 @ CIN, 4 @ NYY, 4 BAL, 3 @ TOR, 3 TBR.​
It's sort of an arbitrary division, but they do get that off day on the road between KC and CIN. Obviously the travel does not favor them, and 10 games of this 16 game stretch are against NYY, TBR and TOR - with Houck and Crawford choosing to sit out the three TOR games.

If they go .500 against NYY, TBR, and TOR, could we go 6 above .500 by sweeping CIN and BAL? Sure - I think it's a possibility if the team's healthy. That's 13 games over .500 and in the mix on the last day.

***


Overall, they have the most control over BAL - 11 games to play (but they have to crush them - not an easy feat this year.) They have 9 against TBR, 4 against CLE, and 0 against CWS.

In terms of other teams that may tumble into contention for the last WC spot, Boston has 4 games left against MIN and 6 against TOR.

So, I don't think it's crazy that they might get in - with the caveat that they turn on the afterburners right now.

I do think it's unlikely though.
 

Rovin Romine

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Just because…. in Chunk 1 of @Rovin Romine most recent plan, Sox went 6-6 instead of 7-5. So they under performed by 1 game which is not terrible.

But the climb is that much steeper accordingly.
Well, the above was a sort of rosy-yet-not-completey-crazy projection to get them to 87 wins or so. (87-75.) They should have been at least 62-61.

They're currently 60-63. That may not seem like a lot of difference but it is, given the few games remaining.

With ongoing and new injuries to Eovaldi, Paxton, (Sale - obviously), Story, Pham, and Hosmer, I just don't see the above happening.

edit- broken math on W-L remaining
 
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Sandy Leon Trotsky

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They are 100% out of it- more in how they’re playing than literally because yeah of course they’re not eliminated yet. But the team is terrible. Devers is slumping, X is injured and clearly frustrated… JDM is broken. They’re looking like the 2011 team at this point when The Collapse was taking everyone not named Jacoby down. And there isn’t anyone playing his part now.
Just get Casas up for the experience!
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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They are 100% out of it- more in how they’re playing than literally because yeah of course they’re not eliminated yet. But the team is terrible. Devers is slumping, X is injured and clearly frustrated… JDM is broken. They’re looking like the 2011 team at this point when The Collapse was taking everyone not named Jacoby down. And there isn’t anyone playing his part now.
Just get Casas up for the experience!
Honestly, this feels more like 2006 than 2011. A team still in transition to the next big run never building any momentum thanks to injuries and down years rather than a team anointed "the best team ever" to start the season seemingly on an unstoppable track to a title until about four weeks to go in the season.
 

jwbasham84

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I agree with this sentiment. That 2011 team seemed destined for a title. This team has only seemed destined for... this collapse. With the amount of holes and injury risks in the lineup, most of us have expected this end result.
 

Daniel_Son

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They are 100% out of it- more in how they’re playing than literally because yeah of course they’re not eliminated yet. But the team is terrible. Devers is slumping, X is injured and clearly frustrated… JDM is broken. They’re looking like the 2011 team at this point when The Collapse was taking everyone not named Jacoby down. And there isn’t anyone playing his part now.
Just get Casas up for the experience!
Does anyone have any idea what happened to Xander? I agree he's injured, but I don't think it was the Verdugo collision... that was on May 20 and he put up an .878 OPS in June. He had a stretch of relative mediocrity in early July (.755 OPS July 1-14) but followed that up with an .859 OPS campaign to end the month. Then in August he's been absolutely putrid. After his 4-hit game on August 5 in KC, he's hitting .173/.228/.289 with 9 hits in 57 at-bats. Something happened to him in late July/early August.
 

Daniel_Son

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Yeah... I'm about ready to stick a fork in it. Eovaldi getting shut down again and Winchowski blowing the game in his place on Tuesday solidified it. This team just ain't it.
 

streeter88

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Swept by the Blue Jays after failing to hit the ball out of the infield with bases loaded no outs tie game bottom of the 9th. 3-20 RISP as a team tonight. Young pitching I get, but you also have to hit the ball.

Lock the thread.
 

Rovin Romine

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After being swept, they stand at 60-65. 37 games left.

To hit their target of 87 wins, they'd have to go 27-10.

(Last night was the second longest game played at 4:22. I didn't stay up for the end of it.)
 

Archer1979

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On the bright side, they start out tied in April (maybe March... haven't looked up the schedule yet due to inept laziness).
 

Rovin Romine

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After being swept, they stand at 60-65. 37 games left.

To hit their target of 87 wins, they'd have to go 27-10.

(Last night was the second longest game played at 4:22. I didn't stay up for the end of it.)
As of this AM, 62-68. 32 games left.

To hit their target of 87 wins they'd have to go 25-7.
 

Rovin Romine

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After sweeping, they stand at 67-68. 27 games left.

To hit their target of 87 wins they'd have to go 20-7. Or more or less what the incredible streaking Rays just did.


Note: A reminder that 87 wins as a target might not be enough in any given year. The WC3 spot is currently at a .553 WP, which is 90 wins, not 87. That would be on the high end high for the #6 team for the past 10 years (but not the highest). 87 has always been a rough target.
 

Niastri

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After sweeping, they stand at 67-68. 27 games left.

To hit their target of 87 wins they'd have to go 20-7. Or more or less what the incredible streaking Rays just did.


Note: A reminder that 87 wins as a target might not be enough in any given year. The WC3 spot is currently at a .553 WP, which is 90 wins, not 87. That would be on the high end high for the #6 team for the past 10 years (but not the highest). 87 has always been a rough target.
FINE!

I guess they'll just have to go 24-3 now.
 

RobertS975

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Ten games out with 24 to play. And since they lose any tiebreaker, in reality it is 11 games out.
 

Rovin Romine

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After sweeping, they stand at 67-68. 27 games left.

To hit their target of 87 wins they'd have to go 20-7. Or more or less what the incredible streaking Rays just did.
Well, that was a 5-9 call to arms. They're now 72-77. 13 games left. Best they can do is 85-77 by going 13-0.

Also the current WC3 team (Seattle) is playing at a .550 clip, which would be an 89 win season.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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I happened to click on the first page of this thread and just have to shake my head. 20 pages of how to get back into this thing starting on May 8 and they never figured it out. They're still pitching Brasier in close games. It boggles the mind.

They've learned nothing. At some point they decided to punt, but only after picking up vets that showed they might try to stay in it? And staying above the tax threshold too? They did it half-heartedly like everything else this year.

What a stupid, stupendous waste of a season.
 

BaseballJones

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Except, of course, they DID get back into it.

At the time of the OP, they were 10-16, 8.5 games behind the Yankees, and in third to last place in the AL, 5.5 games out of the third Wild Card spot.

After play on June 26 (so seven weeks later), they were at 42-31, with the third best record in the AL, holding the #1 spot in the WC race.

So they very much DID get back into it. They DID figure it out.

For a little while anyway. Then they fell apart again. For a million different reasons.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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They were playing against trash teams. Then they completely collapsed.

They didn't figure anything out at all. They still stink against divisional teams. The bullpen is still terrible. Ryan Brasier is still here FFS. They had a nice little run that petered out to nothing.

There's nothing positive to say about this season at all. There's not enough lipstick in the world to put on this particular pig. They're not even trainwreck bad like the 2012 team where you could get entertainment from how buffoon-ish they were. They're just boring bad.

The sooner we all forget about this Dollar General-style bad season the better off we'll be. The 1997 of 21st century seasons.
 

Rovin Romine

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The sooner we all forget about this Dollar General-style bad season the better off we'll be.
Honest question - will this be possible? I don't think it will be.

I mean, we get it - Mookie's gone. You'll never let it go. But honestly, you're so unremittingly obnoxious that I'm kind of starting to wish Mookie dies in a bus accident. Because while that would be tragic, it might be the only thing that could get you to stop with your incessant shitting on the entire team.
 

tims4wins

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They were playing against trash teams. Then they completely collapsed.

They didn't figure anything out at all. They still stink against divisional teams. The bullpen is still terrible. Ryan Brasier is still here FFS. They had a nice little run that petered out to nothing.

There's nothing positive to say about this season at all. There's not enough lipstick in the world to put on this particular pig. They're not even trainwreck bad like the 2012 team where you could get entertainment from how buffoon-ish they were. They're just boring bad.

The sooner we all forget about this Dollar General-style bad season the better off we'll be. The 1997 of 21st century seasons.
Look, this season has sucked. But your statement is false that they played against trash teams. During their 32-12 run (from 10-19 to 42-31):
1-1 vs Atlanta*
2-1 vs Texas
2-1 vs Houston*
4-0 vs Seattle*
2-1 vs White Sox
2-3 vs Baltimore
1-1 vs Cincy
3-0 vs Oakland
3-1 vs Angels
2-1 vs Seattle*
2-1 vs Oakland
2-1 vs St Louis*
3-0 vs Detroit
3-0 vs Cleveland*

14-4 against playoff teams, 4-4 against other teams over .500 (CHW, BAL), and 14-4 against cupcakes. 18 of the 32 wins game against winning teams, with an 18-8 record.

Again, nothing good really came of this season. But the narrative that they got back into it by beating up on weaklings is false.
 

Jason Bae

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Look, this season has sucked. But your statement is false that they played against trash teams. During their 32-12 run (from 10-19 to 42-31):
1-1 vs Atlanta*
2-1 vs Texas
2-1 vs Houston*
4-0 vs Seattle*
2-1 vs White Sox
2-3 vs Baltimore
1-1 vs Cincy
3-0 vs Oakland
3-1 vs Angels
2-1 vs Seattle*
2-1 vs Oakland
2-1 vs St Louis*
3-0 vs Detroit
3-0 vs Cleveland*

14-4 against playoff teams, 4-4 against other teams over .500 (CHW, BAL), and 14-4 against cupcakes. 18 of the 32 wins game against winning teams, with an 18-8 record.

Again, nothing good really came of this season. But the narrative that they got back into it by beating up on weaklings is false.
Honestly, that stretch looks much more impressive now than it felt at the time.
 

BaseballJones

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They were playing against trash teams. Then they completely collapsed.
Included in their 32-15 stretch that vaulted them from third WORST in the AL to third BEST were:

6 games against the White Sox (currently 2nd place in the AL Central)
2 games against Atlanta (currently 2nd place in the NL East with 93 wins)
3 games against Houston (currently 2nd best record in all of baseball)
7 games against Seattle (currently 2nd place in the AL West and a WC team)
5 games against Baltimore (currently 4th place in the AL East but with 78 wins, they're 7th in the AL overall)
3 games against St. Louis (currently 1st place in the NL Central)
3 games against Cleveland (currently 1st place in the AL Central)

So that's 29 games against teams that are either good or very good (or in a couple of cases, top tier) in that stretch of 47 overall. So yes, of course they played some "trash" teams. But MOST (62% actually) of those games were against teams that, you know, are actually really good. And the Sox went 32-15 against them.

They didn't figure anything out at all. They still stink against divisional teams. The bullpen is still terrible. Ryan Brasier is still here FFS. They had a nice little run that petered out to nothing.

There's nothing positive to say about this season at all. There's not enough lipstick in the world to put on this particular pig. They're not even trainwreck bad like the 2012 team where you could get entertainment from how buffoon-ish they were. They're just boring bad.

The sooner we all forget about this Dollar General-style bad season the better off we'll be. The 1997 of 21st century seasons.
Well, depends on what you mean by "figure anything out". They clearly played a LOT better, and not JUST against the "trash" teams. In those 29 games against really good competition during that stretch, they went 18-11 (.621).

So yeah, on the WHOLE, this season has sucked and I'm not happy with it, obviously. But it's disingenuous to point out where the Sox DID play well and just dismiss it entirely, which you've done.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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OK I stand corrected.

My larger point stands. They had six good weeks and then did nothing the rest of the year. If you want to stand on those six weeks and say they accomplished something that's your prerogative. I certainly disagree. I dismiss that run because honestly, what did it get them? Nothing really. They didn't build on it at all.

This season has been a bouillabaisse of mediocrity. A 32-15 stretch and yet here we are at 72-77. That's impressively bad, really.
 
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Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Honest question - will this be possible? I don't think it will be.

I mean, we get it - Mookie's gone. You'll never let it go. But honestly, you're so unremittingly obnoxious that I'm kind of starting to wish Mookie dies in a bus accident. Because while that would be tragic, it might be the only thing that could get you to stop with your incessant shitting on the entire team.
This has nothing to do with Mookie. His dying won't affect how shitty this team is, nor my commentary on it. This has everything to do with the team being unwatchable this year. 200 million+ for 72-77.

I respect your posts. I'm sorry that people taking issue with the low quality of the team offends you so much.

I'll correct myself on one thing: the only thing I'm taking away from this season that's a positive is Bello's last few starts.
 
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