Thursday, May 13, 2004

Fasty Fast Nine by Nine, 05.19.04

Some quick hits for ya:

1. Daubach needs to be playing everyday. When he's hot, he's money in the bank, and right now he's swinging it. Lefties have hurt his playing time, but when he's going like this he can hit them. Get Dauber in there, Terry!

2. Have you ever seen the Red Sox attempt this many pickoffs at 2b in two weeks, must less a whole season? And is part of the design to have the ball fly into centerfield? Because that's happening a lot. How 'bout we work this one out in practice before we bring it to the field.

3. The Red Sox are really catching Cleveland at the wrong time. Mark The Ninth, in two months the Indians are going to stink and we'll be shocked about these games. This unbalanced schedule plays somewhat like that of the NFL, it's not just who you play, but when you play 'em. Just ask the Bills. In August some team is going to be real happy to see Cleveland on their schedule, but it's not gonna be the Sox.

4. Pokey Reese has changed his stance, but The Ninth can't totally pinpoint the difference. Any sharp eyes out there, please advise. I believe he's closed up a bit and is in less of a crouch, but I'm not certain. Hard to compare when I spent the first two weeks watching him with a bag over my head.

5. They don't call him Doubling Doug Mirabelli for nothing.

6. Bill Belichick was walking around Fenway last night, getting a standing O wherever he went. My, how things have changed. Imagine him walking around old Cleveland Stadium when he coached the Browns? They would've set him on fire.

7. Very interesting piece by Thomas Boswell on the Orioles bullpen strategy. Requires free registration, but it's worth a second. Baltimore is applauding themselves for a bold new initiative called "using your best reliever first." Their starter gets in trouble, they bring in Rodrigo Lopez. When he's tired, BJ Ryan. After him, maybe Rick Bauer, maybe Buddy Groom. Matchups and situations are ignored, it's simply the best guy who isn't tired pitches. Baltimore GM Mike Flanagan is proud of himself, and, to be fair, the Orioles are getting much better results out of a mediocre staff than you'd expect. Attention must be paid. The Ninth suggests however that this may have more to do with Lopez, Ryan, and closer Jorge Julio pitching far better than they ever have before, and, in all likelihood, ever will again. The O's have four relievers with ERA's under 2, and Lopez's is 0.36. Great numbers, but from pitchers like these, it seems more like a fluke than a brilliant new idea. Seems to ol' skeptical me that after a few months, their arms will be tired, their confidence will sink a bit, and they will, as the old song goes, regress to the mean. End of idea. But maybe, in fact hopefully, I'm wrong. New ideas are always a good thing, and it's nice to see people trying creative things.

8. I'm all out of love.

9. No, seriously, that's all I got. Oh, if you haven't read this already, Jackie MacMullan has a great piece on Bk Kim. Some interesting quotes here, especially from Damon.