Let's Talk about the manager -- The John Farrell Thread

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joe dokes

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lambeau said:
Agree with all this--Morales a horrible move, a game-losing move notwithstanding the fact that Vic Torino rescued his manager.
 
 
 
Farrell is a very calm,reassuring hand on the tiller, but he does not steer particularly well: conventional to the point of not asking,"Why am I doing this? Does Prince even have a split?"
 
 
 
 
Morales v Fielder was fine. Prince may not have a split but Morales does.  Morales v VMart not so fine.
 
As for Farrell's "steering," really? He says over and over and over that he's making certain moves with things like defense and baserunning in mind. And what were two of the biggest advantages the Sox had in this Series....defense and baserunning. Nobody's perfect, and the criticism of particular moves can be warranted.  But the over-arching stuff like "he does not steer particularly well" is mind-boggling to me.
 
What spoke volumes to me was the sight of him standing there with his arm around Drew's shoulder while Drew was being interviewed post-game by someone.
 
 
And this to me comes right out of the same cloth that allowed Farrell to "change his mind" in the TB series.
 
 
Red Sox manager John Farrell said before the game that “it’s been very difficult” to sit Nava this postseason.
“He’s a good hitter and he’s been an important part of this team throughout the course of the year,” Farrell said. “We’re also at a time of the year where the environment is different. That’s not to say he doesn’t perform in this environment, but we have a different feel and a different personality on the field when Jonny’s in the lineup.
“Call it a hunch, call it whatever you might. That’s what it boils down to. It’s not easy to leave that lefthanded bat [of Nava] out of the lineup.”
Farrell’s hunch paid off in the Red Sox’ series-clinching 5-2 victory. Gomes doubled to lead off the seventh, a ball high off the wall that would have been out of most parks. Four batters later, Gomes walked home on Shane Victorino’s grand slam.
Nava was 3 for 11 in the four games he did get in; Gomes, who went 1 for 4, is 5 for 25 the postseason thus far.. But the Red Sox are 6-0 in games Gomes had started and he had contributed in some way in those games, if not always with hits.
“You’ve got to be candid, you’ve got to be truthful and honest,” Farrell said. “As is [Nava] with himself.”
The Red Sox used a fairly strict platoon for much of the season with Nava starting against righthanded pitchers and Gomes against lefthanders. But Gomes hit righthanded starters better than expected [.265 with an .889 OPS in 145 plate appearances] during the regular season.
Gomes also is a better base runner than Nava, something Farrell values.
“The smaller things, defense and base running, the way this series has unfolded, are integral and have a huge impact in the outcomes,” Farrell said.
 
 
Well, it has worked but I'm unsure of how much credit should go to Farrell. It seemed like he had to have a private discussion with Ben after Game 3 in Tampa to get Bogaerts off the bench as a PH and another after Game 4 to get Bogaerts in for Middlebrooks. Farrell, if anything, has seemed reluctant to make the move to Bogaerts, stretching back to his call-up late in the season. Farrell seems to have adopted Tito's "stick with your guys" thing (which can be good) and a strong preference for "veterans". Nothing short of a catastrophic injury is getting Drew out of the lineup at this point. But Middlebrooks - who is not a veteran - seems to have lost his job to Bogaerts, which we can all be grateful for regardless of where the idea came from and who had to be convinced behind closed doors.
 
 
Do you seriously believe that someone in the FO told, suggested or even hinted to Farrell who he should play?  Are you so jaded by managers and coaches who take the easy way out that you think he was out and out lying when he said, "we tried it that way; it didn;t work, so I tried it the other way." Just because the history of sports is littered with arrogant assholes who couldn't admit a mistake if their lives depended on it doesn't mean that it can't happen.
Drew did not come out of the lineup because Farrell thought defense would be especially  important in this series.. It was.
 

Mighty Joe Young

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czar said:
Probably been covered already, but Farrell's bullpen management has been horrendously Jekyl and Hyde. Positive example: I cannot praise him enough for his willingness to go to Uehara for >3 outs (including the 5-outer Game 5). He has also done a good job of correctly recognizing batters who are susceptible to Breslow outside of the traditional L/L splits.
 
However, the bullpen is constructed such that he has two high-leverage setup arms -- Breslow and Tazawa.
 
Runners on 1st-2nd with no outs in the 6th inning of a 1-0 game is pretty freakin' high leverage. You have to use your best guys there. Sure, you're leaving yourself open to the possibility of Morales pitching in the 8th, but you won't get a high-leverage situation in the 8th unless you put out the fire in the 6th (Workman did a great job, aided by horrendous baserunning).
 
I know that might be asking a lot since most managers don't like using their 7th/8th inning guys outside of the 7th/8th (so this isn't a Farrell-specific issue), but I cannot properly elucidate how insanely frustrating it was for Farrell to have the quick hook with a fatigued Buchholz (four-seamer had dipped to 89 mph!) but then put in a pitcher who had a sizable probability of throwing gasoline onto a fire against two of the Tigers better hitters.
 
EDIT: To clarify this point, the two highest LI moments (for Tigers hitters) of the game were:
V-Mart vs. Morales (3.33)
Fielder vs. Morales (3.04)
 
The next highest LI for a RP (Buchholz took the next spot) was Tazawa vs. Cabrera at 1.87.
 
I don't want my top two LI situations (>3 is pretty damn high) going to the 4th-5th option in my bullpen.
In general I agree with most of this. But I would make two points in Farrell's defence .. He seems to believe is set roles for his relievers (regardless of whether that's a good idea) .. And right now Workman and Morales are in the 6th inning high leverage role. Workman on merit and Morales .. well history I suppose.

Secondly, and more importantly, both Morales and Workman were up at the start of the inning. The game leverage wasn't > 3 when he chose Morales and Workman. 12 outs is too much for just Tazawa, Breslow and Koji so you have to get something from the other guys.

If I'm Farrell I would have piggybacked Doubront with Buchholz .. getting him up way before the sixth .. and bring him in after the first guy got on.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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For those criticizing the Morales decisions, what was the right move?  Certainly, I don't think it was "leave Clay in."  That can be argued, sure, but it's a coin flip at best and to my untrained eye, he had zilch left and seemed to know it.  Second is bring in Workman right away.  I think the prevailing assumption if that's the argument is that Morales has been a horrible pitcher that cannot be trusted.  I think we now can conclude that's true based on what we saw last night and his appearance in the ALDS, but was that really the obvious case before last night?  He was a very very good pitcher in the regular season, after coming back up -- around a .250 ERA over several games, with clean innings against the Yankees and even these very Tigers in a very tight game in Fenway.  Unlike Workman, he has post-season experience.  You put him on the roster to be your fourth best bullpen option, and it was time to use that option.  For better or worse, there's a drop off after the third best option, but with a game 7 looming, it was too early to go to one of the big three.  So, bring in Breslow right then?  I'm a definite no on that.  The Sox were losing in a non-elimination game in the sixth inning, and Breslow has become much more than a LOOGY -- he's now a 7th/8th inning set up man who pitches to both sides of the plate, and in the moment looked like he could still be needed in that role.  So, who, Dempster with a possible all-hands on deck game 7?  Peavy?  Do we even know that anyone besides Morales could have warmed quickly enough?
 
So, that leaves not bringing in Workman once the bases were loaded.  Coin flip to me between him and Workman.  Bases loaded no out in the sixth inning of a one-run game sucks.  There are no great options -- even Breslow.  Hope they get one, feel fortunate if they get two.  The way the inning played out, it all seems so obvious, but I don't think it was obvious at the time.
 

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Aside from not telling Victorino not to but, and the Morales disaster... the one situation I really disagreed with him was 2 outs, bottom of the 6th, 2nd and 3rd, down 2-1....... and letting Saltalamacchia hit and not going to Nava or Carp. Is that fan over-management thinking? The way Saltalamacchia has been going it just seemed after Napoli K'd there was no chance in hell of the inning turning into anything, it was a borderline miracle Salty even got the bat on the ball for his IF popup. I'd have sent up the PH and then let Ross take the last 3 innings.
 

Toe Nash

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He may believe in set roles and that may be useful in the regular season but those are adjusted in the playoffs and I think the players understand that. Koji is giving more than he's had to. Breslow came in in the 6th twice against the Rays. Tazawa came in in the 6th in game 5. They pitched well even though those weren't their "roles."
 
Ideal is probably to get Breslow up to start the inning, but I don't think anyone would have had a problem with Workman there either. Morales is just a horrendous choice in a tight game with runners on.
 

JimBoSox9

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...
However, the bullpen is constructed such that he has two high-leverage setup arms -- Breslow and Tazawa.
...
Runners on 1st-2nd with no outs in the 6th inning of a 1-0 game is pretty freakin' high leverage.
...
EDIT: To clarify this point, the two highest LI moments (for Tigers hitters) of the game were:
V-Mart vs. Morales (3.33)
Fielder vs. Morales (3.04)

The next highest LI for a RP (Buchholz took the next spot) was Tazawa vs. Cabrera at 1.87.

I don't want my top two LI situations (>3 is pretty damn high) going to the 4th-5th option in my bullpen.


I agree and think Breslow needed to be the move there. At the time there was a decent chance you'd never see leverage like that again for the rest of the game, and I consider it a settled issue that Morales has unreliable control coming out of the pen.

The problem, I think, is Tazawa. It appears that he has lost his manager's trust. His playoff usage patterns have indicated a priority of limiting exposure.
So that leaves Breslow as both the only effective LOOGY and hi-lev SU in the pen. That's untenable without robbing Peter to pay Paul at some point. Additionally, Koji was on fumes only 48 hours ago.

I would have gone the other way and emptied my clip at the problem at hand, but there was no 'good' answer there. It didn't work in the 6th, but that decision also made for a smoother post-slam shutdown than might have occurred if Farrell had been more aggressive with Breslow.

In the WS I'd like to see Dempster given a chance to be the 8th inning guy. It gives him a chance to start warming up as early as needed, a clean slate of sacks, and he can tap into his NL stuff and closing experience. Gotta do something, the bullpen is functioning 1 trustworthy arm short right now.
 

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This team and this manager miss Andrew Miller more than anyone could have possibly expected.  Fielder in that spot last night would have been Miller's without a shadow of a doubt were he healthy.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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JimBoSox9 said:
I agree and think Breslow needed to be the move there. At the time there was a decent chance you'd never see leverage like that again for the rest of the game, and I consider it a settled issue that Morales has unreliable control coming out of the pen.

The problem, I think, is Tazawa. It appears that he has lost his manager's trust. His playoff usage patterns have indicated a priority of limiting exposure.
So that leaves Breslow as both the only effective LOOGY and hi-lev SU in the pen. That's untenable without robbing Peter to pay Paul at some point. Additionally, Koji was on fumes only 48 hours ago.

I would have gone the other way and emptied my clip at the problem at hand, but there was no 'good' answer there. It didn't work in the 6th, but that decision also made for a smoother post-slam shutdown than might have occurred if Farrell had been more aggressive with Breslow.

In the WS I'd like to see Dempster given a chance to be the 8th inning guy. It gives him a chance to start warming up as early as needed, a clean slate of sacks, and he can tap into his NL stuff and closing experience. Gotta do something, the bullpen is functioning 1 trustworthy arm short right now.
 
If there's a consistency to this thread, it does seem to be that we want Farrell to do things sooner than he wants to do them -- that is use better guys in the higher win percentage moments even if they come earlier.  Run Berry sooner.  Pinch hit Nava or Xander early.  Now, use Breslow in the 6th inning.  
 
I think many of these arguments have merit, and it does seem to be a recurring theme -- there seem to be stages in the game where Farrell simply things "too early" without regard to the leverage.  Happily we haven't seen what his M.O. would be in an elimination game, because we haven't had one yet, and hopefully never will this year.
 
Last night I think he was managing with an eye on game 7.  With first and second and no out, there is a decent chance the Tigers are going to at least tie the game, even against your premium bullpen.  Even if they don't, I don't think there was any way he could afford to pitch Breslow, Taz, and Uehara for four innings with just a one-run lead after they had gone 3.2 in game 5 with a potential game 7 looming.   So, Workman or Morales (or someone else) was going to have to pitch eventually.  It was not a great situation either way, but I guess I'm convinced maybe the higher leverage situation called for Breslow then, and then hope Workman or Morales can hold a one-run lead or keep it a tie game later.
 

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I can't blame Farrell too much for the Morales decision.  Buchholz is killing them by not getting through the 6th, and they are one reliable reliever short if the starter doesn't get them to the 7th.  Morales against a helpless Fielder seemed like a good enough move, and pitching to VMart with the bases loaded is not a place to put a rookie regardless of what hand.
 
Give Farrell credit for getting Workman out after he had muffed two consecutive grounders back to the mound.  It would have been tempting to say, "they're not hitting him hard, leave him in." But it's also possible his mind would have been dwelling on the two miscues and not on making the next pitch.  Excellent decision to lift him there.
 
And, in the meantime, Workman looked great; maybe they'll be more comfortable with him getting 6th and 7th inning outs as they head into the series.
 

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joe dokes said:
 
Morales v Fielder was fine. Prince may not have a split but Morales does.  Morales v VMart not so fine.
 
As for Farrell's "steering," really? He says over and over and over that he's making certain moves with things like defense and baserunning in mind. And what were two of the biggest advantages the Sox had in this Series....defense and baserunning. Nobody's perfect, and the criticism of particular moves can be warranted.  But the over-arching stuff like "he does not steer particularly well" is mind-boggling to me.
 
What spoke volumes to me was the sight of him standing there with his arm around Drew's shoulder while Drew was being interviewed post-game by someone.
 
And this to me comes right out of the same cloth that allowed Farrell to "change his mind" in the TB series.
 
Do you seriously believe that someone in the FO told, suggested or even hinted to Farrell who he should play?  Are you so jaded by managers and coaches who take the easy way out that you think he was out and out lying when he said, "we tried it that way; it didn;t work, so I tried it the other way." Just because the history of sports is littered with arrogant assholes who couldn't admit a mistake if their lives depended on it doesn't mean that it can't happen.
Drew did not come out of the lineup because Farrell thought defense would be especially  important in this series.. It was.
 
 
At some point, Farrell moved into Belichick territory under the ShelterDog formulation for me: I don't think Farrell is infallible, nor do I always understand what he does, but I do believe he has a solid baseball reason for it.
 
I believe this even when he says otherwise. At the Science of Baseball Seminar, Farrell, while clearly underselling it, indicated that they employ some very advanced stuff that they often only communicate to the players in smaller pieces--they don't want to go over their heads, they don't want to overwhelm, they don't want push-back, and frankly, the players don't always need to know all the reasoning because that's just more to think about and that hurts the ball club, Meat.
 
 
BCsMightyJoeYoung said:
In general I agree with most of this. But I would make two points in Farrell's defence .. He seems to believe is set roles for his relievers (regardless of whether that's a good idea) .. And right now Workman and Morales are in the 6th inning high leverage role. Workman on merit and Morales .. well history I suppose.

Secondly, and more importantly, both Morales and Workman were up at the start of the inning. The game leverage wasn't > 3 when he chose Morales and Workman. 12 outs is too much for just Tazawa, Breslow and Koji so you have to get something from the other guys.

If I'm Farrell I would have piggybacked Doubront with Buchholz .. getting him up way before the sixth .. and bring him in after the first guy got on.
 
As to the bolded, I agree but because he has explicitly stated he believes in this. This is not at the SABR end of his management style, but he believes players do better under settled expectations, and then when certain scenarios come up, they start getting mentally and physically prepared to go in even before the call comes into the pen; it's a managing humans not machines thing.
 
 
SoxScout said:
Aside from not telling Victorino not to but, and the Morales disaster... the one situation I really disagreed with him was 2 outs, bottom of the 6th, 2nd and 3rd, down 2-1....... and letting Saltalamacchia hit and not going to Nava or Carp. Is that fan over-management thinking? The way Saltalamacchia has been going it just seemed after Napoli K'd there was no chance in hell of the inning turning into anything, it was a borderline miracle Salty even got the bat on the ball for his IF popup. I'd have sent up the PH and then let Ross take the last 3 innings.
 
Carp's line is 0/0/0 in the playoffs. We don't know what's going on with Nava but as E5YAZ said elsewhere, we may find out soon.
 
 
Edit: Carp's OPS is 0.
 

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Plympton91 said:
I can't blame Farrell too much for the Morales decision.  Buchholz is killing them by not getting through the 6th, and they are one reliable reliever short if the starter doesn't get them to the 7th.  Morales against a helpless Fielder seemed like a good enough move, and pitching to VMart with the bases loaded is not a place to put a rookie regardless of what hand.
 
Give Farrell credit for getting Workman out after he had muffed two consecutive grounders back to the mound.  It would have been tempting to say, "they're not hitting him hard, leave him in." But it's also possible his mind would have been dwelling on the two miscues and not on making the next pitch.  Excellent decision to lift him there.
 
And, in the meantime, Workman looked great; maybe they'll be more comfortable with him getting 6th and 7th inning outs as they head into the series.
 
Agreed. People love Farrell's use of the pen when he doesn't need innings out of anyone but Breslow, Taz and Koji. But the reality is, sometimes you need more innings out of the pen.
 

Steve Dillard

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I get that he sticks with his guys and see the long term benefits of it. I was and am all for him having Drew for his defense, and I continue to think he'll pull out of it. And I am all for victor Eno for his defense, but the seventh inning was a time where you needed a hit and Eno has shown the inability to make any contact in those situations. Especially against a righty slider guy. That was the time to pinch hit Nava and put him in right. To be honest that's what I would have done.
 

LostinNJ

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The Morales move didn't bother me. If he brought in Breslow, who's used to coming in later, maybe that little difference in the pattern would be enough to throw him off his game. Morales exists on this roster to pitch to left-handers. He's very good at preventing them from getting hits, though not always good at actually getting them out. It didn't work. So that was a lesson for the future, and none of us would be surprised if Morales didn't make the WS roster.
 
I assume they will have a definite plan in place for the Buchholz and Peavy starts in the WS. One of the multi-inning guys has to be ready to come in as soon as the starter begins to fade, and by ready I mean he has to know that afternoon that he will need to be ready to pitch in the 5th or 6th, or even earlier.
 

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rembrat said:
You give any manager a LOOGY or anything resembling a LOOGY and he will use him. 
 
EDIT: Tito had Javier Lopez until Theo took him away.
Tito also had Foulke, not Mike Myers, come in to pitch to Matsui in the 8th inning of Game 5 in the 2004 LCS.
 

geoduck no quahog

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With the Cardinal's poor performance against left-handers, Felix will inevitably see some meaningful innings - particularly in St. Louis where either Buchholz (I assume he's no. 3) or Peavy will need to be pinch hit for if the Sox are behind.
 
The small problem becomes - which game to you get him prepped for? Game 3 or Game 4?
 

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Bellhorn said:
Tito also had Foulke, not Mike Myers, come in to pitch to Matsui in the 8th inning of Game 5 in the 2004 LCS.
 
Don't know what your point is here but Farrell has had UE come into the 8th many a time this postseason. I love your sig.
 

LostinNJ

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I think we should quit making assertions based only on circumstantial evidence. "He's not playing Nava, so Nava must be secretly hurt." "He started using Bogaerts because Ben told him to." He's explained why he's been playing Gomes; we may not like his explanation, but it's right there in front of us. And he has seen exactly the same things from Drew and Middlebrooks that we have; he could actually have figured out for himself that Bogaerts could help the team win.
 
This guy is going to the World Series with a team that, according to the experts, should have finished fourth or fifth in the division. Maybe he knows what he's doing.
 

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geoduck no quahog said:
I don't know. If not for fucking Farrell the Sox would have Avila available on the bench right now.
 
I don't understand what you're getting it, but I'm curious. Explain?
 

Bellhorn

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rembrat said:
Don't know what your point is here but Farrell has had UE come into the 8th many a time this postseason. I love your sig.
Point is that this was a typical LOOGY situation where the manager was smart enough to realize that he actually had a better option. It's not without precedent.
 

joe dokes

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geoduck no quahog said:
With the Cardinal's poor performance against left-handers, Felix will inevitably see some meaningful innings - particularly in St. Louis where either Buchholz (I assume he's no. 3) or Peavy will need to be pinch hit for if the Sox are behind.
 
The small problem becomes - which game to you get him prepped for? Game 3 or Game 4?
 
Not sure what you mean. If Buchholz needs the early relief it'll be Game 3; if not, it might be game 4. I dont think there's much, if any advance prep work for being ready for the particular game. In fact, I'm guesssing he's been told something like, "If any starter shits the bed early you're coming in.  We're gonna try to get you to start an inning, but it might not happen.  Pay close attention to their lefties, because if you come in in the middle of an inning, it'll probably be with one of them at bat."
 

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No complaints with JF's handling of Lester last night.  He was still dealing when he finished the seventh and Farrell had Tazawa ready to go as Jon started the eighth.  Let Taz face one batter (probably so as not to waste his warmup) and then Dempster to pitch the ninth.
 

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I don't think they're worried about "wasting" a warmup.  It really makes very little difference at that point whether he comes in to face one batter or not.  Rather, I think the speculation on the broadcast was right; that Farrell wanted to give Taz a taste of World Series action before potentially using him in a much higher leverage situation down the road.
 

tbrown_01923

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Tazawa's use could have been to allow Dempster to start an inning - although with nobody on base, it wouldn't expect it to make a difference.  But I am never surprised by creatures of habit and  odd managerial logic.
 
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JimBoSox9 said:
In the WS I'd like to see Dempster given a chance to be the 8th inning guy. It gives him a chance to start warming up as early as needed, a clean slate of sacks, and he can tap into his NL stuff and closing experience. Gotta do something, the bullpen is functioning 1 trustworthy arm short right now.
 
So... gotta do something else now?  Or do you decide that Dempster made good pitches aside from the meatball-that-went-430'?
 

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I think letting Dempster start an inning is the right thing to do.  Having him get warm, throw a couple of live pitches, then sit immediately, is probably too far from his routine.
 
I'll be honest, I suggested Morales to my friend.  A 7 run lead and John Jay at the plate (620 OPS vs. L).  I suspect they had Tazawa warming in the 7th (before Papi's HR) in case there was any trouble so just went ahead and used him to get him some game action.
 

rajendra82

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Dempster did fine I think. He was pitching to contact to not put too many Cardinals on at once. The occasional hit , and even the solo home run was a risk he needed to be willing to take to get the game over with.
 

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rajendra82 said:
Dempster did fine I think. He was pitching to contact to not put typo many on at once. The occasional hit , and even the solo home run was a risk he needed to be willing to take to get the game over with.
 
Right - imagine how up in arms we'd all be watching Morales walk a couple guys. When up 8, you throw strikes.
 

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smastroyin said:
I think letting Dempster start an inning is the right thing to do.  Having him get warm, throw a couple of live pitches, then sit immediately, is probably too far from his routine.
 
I'll be honest, I suggested Morales to my friend.  A 7 run lead and John Jay at the plate (620 OPS vs. L).  I suspect they had Tazawa warming in the 7th (before Papi's HR) in case there was any trouble so just went ahead and used him to get him some game action.
 
Pretty sure no one was warming in the Sox pen in the 7th.  Kept glancing over from my seat in 43, so I don't have the best angle, but I can see the ball going back and forth if they are warming someone
 

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smastroyin said:
I think letting Dempster start an inning is the right thing to do.  Having him get warm, throw a couple of live pitches, then sit immediately, is probably too far from his routine.
 
I'll be honest, I suggested Morales to my friend.  A 7 run lead and John Jay at the plate (620 OPS vs. L).  I suspect they had Tazawa warming in the 7th (before Papi's HR) in case there was any trouble so just went ahead and used him to get him some game action.
 
I was on the monster and had a great view of the bullpen - Noone started warming until after Papi's homer.  As soon as he hit that, Taz jumped up and started warming.  I think at that moment, they put Lester on a PC.  Dempster started warming in B8 and Koji looked to get some side work in. 
 
Addendum:  Let us not forget that Farrell managed to get the umps to get together to reverse that call..
 

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I also think Farrell handled the Reversal perfectly.  He didn't come out screaming like a banshee.  He was respectful and convinced Demuth to check with the others.  Perfectly played.  Also, his discussion allowed the replay to be played various times inside the stadium- not on the main CF board by he way- which allowed the fans to make it clear what an awful call it was.
 
Edit: Apparently they may have shown the play on the main board.  If so, I'm shocked.
 

JimBoSox9

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MentalDisabldLst said:
 
So... gotta do something else now?  Or do you decide that Dempster made good pitches aside from the meatball-that-went-430'?
 
I didn't have the best vantage point, but it sure looked like he was throwing a lot of do-nothing slop up there.  No bite on anything, least of all the gopher ball.  He's a pro, though, and his arm probably has enough rubber and rest in it to have a chance of fixing it in side work.  At this point, it's hard to argue that he should get the ball with a short lead as the #4 option behind Koji-Taz-Breslow, but it's not like anyone else is carpe diem-ing that slot.
 

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JimBoSox9 said:
 
I didn't have the best vantage point, but it sure looked like he was throwing a lot of do-nothing slop up there.  No bite on anything, least of all the gopher ball.  He's a pro, though, and his arm probably has enough rubber and rest in it to have a chance of fixing it in side work.  At this point, it's hard to argue that he should get the ball with a short lead as the #4 option behind Koji-Taz-Breslow, but it's not like anyone else is carpe diem-ing that slot.
 
He came in to pitch 1 inning of an 8-0 win. I'm having trouble seeing the angst here. His job was to throw strikes so the fans could celebrate and get the hell out of there. He did his job.
 

KillerBs

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Nice that our pen is good and rested again. Koji should be good to go for 4 or 5 outs tonight, after 4 days rest. Even though games 3 and 4 look to be ones where we may need to rely heavily on the pen, tonite has to be a quick hook night, if it is still close in the 6th.
 

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Merkle's Boner said:
I also think Farrell handled the Reversal perfectly.  He didn't come out screaming like a banshee.  He was respectful and convinced Demuth to check with the others.  Perfectly played.  Also, his discussion allowed the replay to be played various times inside the stadium- not on the main CF board by he way- which allowed the fans to make it clear what an awful call it was.
 
Edit: Apparently they may have shown the play on the main board.  If so, I'm shocked.
This.  A great job keeping his composure and convincing umps for a huddle. 
 

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Smiling Joe Hesketh said:
 
He came in to pitch 1 inning of an 8-0 win. I'm having trouble seeing the angst here. His job was to throw strikes so the fans could celebrate and get the hell out of there. He did his job.
 
What are you talking about?  I suggested Dempster be locked into starting the 8th of close games for a couple reasons.  Farrell chose that exact usage with a larger lead.  MDL asked 'how about now?'.  I said Demp's stuff looked like slop and I'm less confident than I was yesterday in him but there aren't any 'good' choices right now behind the top 2-3 guys in the pen.  It's called analyzing, brother.
 

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Merkle's Boner said:
I also think Farrell handled the Reversal perfectly.  He didn't come out screaming like a banshee.  He was respectful and convinced Demuth to check with the others.  Perfectly played.  Also, his discussion allowed the replay to be played various times inside the stadium- not on the main CF board by he way- which allowed the fans to make it clear what an awful call it was.
 
Edit: Apparently they may have shown the play on the main board.  If so, I'm shocked.
I don't think they did. If they did I didn't see. I was in  RF and Pesky's Pole blocked my view of the play completely. The crowd seemed to indicate that it was a bad call at first, but all of sudden everyone up in the Grandstand seats went nuts a little bit after Farrell was out there and it was clear to everyone in the park that the replay was just shown on the TVs up there and it was bad call.
 

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JimBoSox9 said:
 
What are you talking about?  I suggested Dempster be locked into starting the 8th of close games for a couple reasons.  Farrell chose that exact usage with a larger lead.  MDL asked 'how about now?'.  I said Demp's stuff looked like slop and I'm less confident than I was yesterday in him but there aren't any 'good' choices right now behind the top 2-3 guys in the pen.  It's called analyzing, brother.
 
I think analyzing his stuff when he's just throwing 1 inning of an 8-1 win isn't all that helpful. He's not likely to show the Cards much of anything crafty, he'll save that stuff for another appearance that's in a tighter game IMO. You're up 8 runs, you throw fastballs. If Holliday hits one to Venus, so be it.
 

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JimBoSox9 said:
 
I didn't have the best vantage point, but it sure looked like he was throwing a lot of do-nothing slop up there.  No bite on anything, least of all the gopher ball.  He's a pro, though, and his arm probably has enough rubber and rest in it to have a chance of fixing it in side work.  At this point, it's hard to argue that he should get the ball with a short lead as the #4 option behind Koji-Taz-Breslow, but it's not like anyone else is carpe diem-ing that slot.
 
 
I have no idea why your initial post suggests Dempster should be given a chance to be the 8th inning guy. He is the long/mop up guy that will pitch in blowouts to finish the game.  As SJH notes, he was in there to throw strikes and finish the game and that's what he did. If one of the starters has a rough first few innings, Doubie or Dempster will be the guys you see. Or, if games like last night happen, you will see him finishing up. Dempster did the same thing against Tampa in the ALDS. 
 
Nothing needs to change with his usage.
 

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JimBoSox9 said:
 
What are you talking about?  I suggested Dempster be locked into starting the 8th of close games for a couple reasons.  Farrell chose that exact usage with a larger lead.  MDL asked 'how about now?'.  I said Demp's stuff looked like slop and I'm less confident than I was yesterday in him but there aren't any 'good' choices right now behind the top 2-3 guys in the pen.  It's called analyzing, brother.
 
 
The hell?  Have you watched Dempster all year?  The bolded doesn't make a lick of sense, even prior to what he did last night.
 

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I think Workman is, and should be, far ahead of Demspter on the leverage-related depth chart. I dont even think its close.  If Dempster is pitching in regulation time, something has either gone horribly wrong or wonderfully right.
 

JimBoSox9

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Dogman2 said:
 
 
I have no idea why your initial post suggests Dempster should be given a chance to be the 8th inning guy.
 
I think I know why, but I'll try one more time:  
 
1) Right now there are three hi-lev guys Farrell trusts in the pen.
B) If a hi-leverage situation occurs in the 5th or 6th inning, Farrell has the option of burning one of the guys he wants to save for the 7th/8th, or going with a less-reliable choice.
3) Farrell chose the latter option first (in the form of Morales), and I didn't like the move either before or after it didn't work
D) Ryan Dempster has experience holding late leads out of the pen.
5) Ryan Dempster is also old and mostly a SP
 
Conclusion: My opinion is (was?) that the BATNA to using Morales to pour gas on a fire in the 6th is to be more aggressive with Breslow and Taz and giving Demp the whole game to prep for coming in for a clean 8th if the SUs get burned.  
 
FYI, feel free to disagree with this.  I believe I just said to MDL that I may be headed towards disagreeing myself.  There are solid arguments to be made for continuing to patchwork the bridge to the Big 3, or for leaning on Uehara in the 8th as much as humanly possible, or for giving Workman the same role.  But hopefully you read this like you didn't read the first try and have a little better understanding of the why.
 

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JimBoSox9 said:
 
I think I know why, but I'll try one more time:  
 
1) Right now there are three hi-lev guys Farrell trusts in the pen.
B) If a hi-leverage situation occurs in the 5th or 6th inning, Farrell has the option of burning one of the guys he wants to save for the 7th/8th, or going with a less-reliable choice.
3) Farrell chose the latter option first (in the form of Morales), and I didn't like the move either before or after it didn't work
D) Ryan Dempster has experience holding late leads out of the pen.
5) Ryan Dempster is also old and mostly a SP
 
Conclusion: My opinion is (was?) that the BATNA to using Morales to pour gas on a fire in the 6th is to be more aggressive with Breslow and Taz and giving Demp the whole game to prep for coming in for a clean 8th if the SUs get burned.  
 
FYI, feel free to disagree with this.  I believe I just said to MDL that I may be headed towards disagreeing myself.  There are solid arguments to be made for continuing to patchwork the bridge to the Big 3, or for leaning on Uehara in the 8th as much as humanly possible, or for giving Workman the same role.  But hopefully you read this like you didn't read the first try and have a little better understanding of the why.
 
You are absolutely correct.  I do not understand any arguments about the use of Dempster as 8th inning guy/bridge guy/4th guy out of pen/whatever label you want to use.
 
In addition to myself, SJH, MDL and Joe Dokes all don't understand it either.  I suspect we aren't the only ones.
 

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D) Ryan Dempster has experience holding late leads out of the pen.
 
 
For 3 seasons a long time ago,  Dempster served as a "closer" & got lots of saves.  He did not pitch particularly well though, with a K:BB ratio of less than 2:1 and between 4 & 5 BB/9 all three years.
 
M

MentalDisabldLst

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I'd be leaning towards Workman at this point if we need a 5th- or 6th-inning stopper and aren't in an elimination game.
 
Did Farrell give any comments on bullpen usage in his postgame?  Or was it mostly questions like "pretty good game, huh John?", as I would expect from our media?
 

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Dogman2 said:
 
You are absolutely correct.  I do not understand any arguments about the use of Dempster as 8th inning guy/bridge guy/4th guy out of pen/whatever label you want to use.
 
In addition to myself, SJH, MDL and Joe Dokes all don't understand it either.  I suspect we aren't the only ones.
 
Dogman, JBS is "taking shots at you" because you still haven't acknowledged that you read or understood the one point he's made, which is that using Dempster (or whomever) later in the game than typical might allow you to use Taz or Breslow earlier to put out a fire. He's not sure it's a great tactic, either, but he's trying to think about this, and you're foaming at the mouth about how DEMPSTER SUXXXX! and that there should be no discussion of bullpen strategy on a discussion board thread about the manager. Chill out. 
 
I don't think that this is a good move with our personnel, but it's at least plausible that it might be. It's a variation on relief ace thinking. It might — MIGHT — make more sense to put the good pitcher in the high leverage spot even if it happens in the fifth or sixth, instead of bringing in e.g. Morales to walk a couple dudes first. Then you can play matchups with your weaker pitchers later on. Start Dempster or Workman or Doubront with a clean eighth, and then you can bring in Koji for additional outs if they get into trouble. He's not proposing that Dempster be a traditional eighth-inning setup guy. 
 

Dogman

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nvalvo said:
 
Dogman, JBS is "taking shots at you" because you still haven't acknowledged that you read or understood the one point he's made, which is that using Dempster (or whomever) later in the game than typical might allow you to use Taz or Breslow earlier to put out a fire. He's not sure it's a great tactic, either, but he's trying to think about this, and you're foaming at the mouth about how DEMPSTER SUXXXX! and that there should be no discussion of bullpen strategy on a discussion board thread about the manager. Chill out. 
 
I don't think that this is a good move with our personnel, but it's at least plausible that it might be. It's a variation on relief ace thinking. It might — MIGHT — make more sense to put the good pitcher in the high leverage spot even if it happens in the fifth or sixth, instead of bringing in e.g. Morales to walk a couple dudes first. Then you can play matchups with your weaker pitchers later on. Start Dempster or Workman or Doubront with a clean eighth, and then you can bring in Koji for additional outs if they get into trouble. He's not proposing that Dempster be a traditional eighth-inning setup guy. 
 
Your incorrect assertions about foaming at the mouth or needing to chill aside, (I don't think Dempster SUXXXXX! at all. I think he was very valuable this season as an innings eater) I am insanely relaxed and having a ton of fun because my baseball team is up 1-0 in the World Series and Farrell has played a huge role in that. And, yet, JBS thinks it might be worth making changes because, apparently, he isn't happy about the usage.
 
So, there is nothing to acknowledge regarding his point making any sense.  Using Dempster as anything other than a long man, after the season he just had, is not even worth thinking about, especially in this thread.  Farrell has used Dempster as the long man in all three postseason series to this point, and that makes the most sense.
 
That makes the most sense given these facts:
 
1. Dempster was our worst starter this year and the worst starter over the season is always the long man/mop up guy in the postseason.
2. As Joe Dokes notes, Dempster was last used as a save guy three years ago and wasn't very good despite the number of saves he had.
3. Workman has been much, much, much better in much higher leverage situations in these playoffs.
4. JBS's suggestion that Dempster over Morales would have been a better move.  Maybe, but Farrell played the matchup against Fielder, like all managers do. When he left Morales in to long, he brought in Workman (and not Dempster) in the 6th inning because, clearly, Farrell thinks Workman is the 4th guy/bridge guy/whatever label JBS wants to use.
5. This is how Farrell has used the bullpen the entire playoffs with much success.
 
Given all of that, why does anyone want to think about or make a change?
 
You don't think it is a good move either. So, how is it plausible that it MIGHT make sense or MIGHT be worth thinking about?  Hell, we know Farrell isn't even thinking it MIGHT make sense because he hasn't employed his bullpen that way all postseason.
 
You are now the 5th person saying it makes no sense and yet you want me to acknowledge it MIGHT?
 
I stand by my original statement.
 
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