Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Some play-off form

Well a great night for the four main play-off contenders in the Central and East...

Excellent, the White Sox have lost... go Indians... erm... no

Excellent, the Red Sox have lost... go Yankees... erm... no

Both the East teams missed a big chance tonight - they could have picked up games on the Indians in the Wild Card and on the White Sox in the AL 'best record/home field' standings.

As soon as last night's game was rained out I thought the Yankees had gained an advantage - as has been commented on in quite a few blogs today, over 50% of double headers end in splits, and given the Sox have had trouble with the Jays all year, I didn't like our chances of picking up the two. However at 5-2 ahead, the Sox should have taken both and opened up a potentially huge one game advantage with just five remaining, instead, we were treated to some "interesting" managerial decisions, with Terry keen to give every pitcher that one hitter more.

One encouraging thing was his decision to bring in Hansen - remember just five days ago we were treated to the "we will not bring in Hansen in high pressure, high leverage situations, that just wouldn't be fair" speech... I guess tonight's situation wasn't considered high pressure because... It would be hard to describe Hansen's performance as encouraging but... it was - he showed off more pitches to at least make hitter's think that they can't automatically sit on fastball, even if many of these pitches struggled to find the zone.

It will be interesting to see how both teams respond to tonight's losses - at least the Red Sox had one positive today, and picked up half a game on the Yankees. Tonight's pitching from the Yankees has been appalling - 8 pitchers have combined to give up 17 runs to a clearly dispirited Baltimore team that has counted off another 24 hours from their countdown clock. Neil M won't believe me, but Michael Kay has just stated that Alan Embree was the Yankees most effective pitcher tonight... that is never a good sign.

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