Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Keep those wagons rolling...

Well both Neil's are happy this evening, though the one constrained by 5 hours and the lack of a Yankee's game doesn't quite know it yet! A very good win over the reigning AL Champs for NH, and the joy of owning Daisuke in a 6x6 fantasy league where the 6th pitching category is complete games for NM.

The last two starts from Daisuke have been the quality we hoped for as Sox fans during the winter hoopla - a combined 16 innings pitched, 2 runs (both solo shots), 3 walks (all in the Toronto game) and 13K - we would probably all have signed up for an average outing that lasted 8 innings with those kind of stats. More importantly, these two starts have been devoid of that one "inning" that had blighted his previous 4 starts - the Tigers had 2 men on in the 4th, but aside from that (even including that) there really was very little drama, no spots where you felt that one pitch may make the difference between the game unraveling and what we ended up with.

As a Sox fan who has never experienced the Sox win a division title - my starting point was 1996 - this team really does seem to have a quality that no other team in my Sox lifetime has had. Even in 2004, the team really didn't come together until the 2nd half, and if truth be told, it always seemed that the wild card was the route to the play-offs that year, even if it did get quite close at times.

And that quality is of course deep starting pitching - the 9 inning effort tonight continues the streak of strong outings by our front 4. You really do feel that every time out, these 4 will give the team a genuine chance to win that game. In Pedro's single year with Curt, we had that 2 days out of 5 (though if I am being honest, Pedro's 'decline', relative though it was, meant that I never really had that feeling with him at that stage of his career with the Sox), but never to this depth. I don't really expect this to continue all year - I think Beckett, Schilling and Wakefield may all regress at points during the year, but given health, it is hard to imagine all of them regressing at the same time, or for a prolonged period...

As I posted earlier in the season, it may be early but it is better to sweep, than be swept... well it is still early (and I may still be saying that in September), but it is better to lead by 8.5, than trail by 8.5! The Sox have had better records at this stage in previous seasons, 26-9 as recently as 2002, but have never had the Yankees this far back in their rear view mirrors. But the stark reality is, there are still 125 games to go, and a heck of a lot can go wrong in those 125 games - see Josh Beckett's hand for all the evidence we need.

3 threw a strike:

At 10:50 am, Blogger s1c said...

Long way to go, but you have to feel good. 8 1/2 up is indeed better than 8 1/2 down.

 
At 5:08 pm, Blogger Neil M said...

My boy D-K goes good!

 
At 11:49 pm, Anonymous Cuentos said...

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