Tuesday, July 08, 2008
1) Even though the Sox lost seven out of ten of the recent road trip, they out scored their opponents. This is a good team that ran into some bad luck and got their biggest weakness exposed - middle relievers that don’t throw strikes.
2) Jon Lester may have turned a corner. He has been solid and the very definition of a #2 starter over his last six starts with a phenomenal 27-6 K/BB ratio. Lester has good stuff and recently, he has commanded it.
3) Hideki and Dice-K need to not only be effective consistently but against a more patient lineup than the Twins.
4) Justin Masterson is going to pen where every scouting report, I read, thought he would end up. Southpaws just get too good of a look on Masterson and his second best pitch - slider - is ineffective. As a reliever, Masterson could be a good option versus a RHB or for a groundball (i.e. double play).
5) If Clay Buchholz can handle starting, which I would bet on, Bartolo Colon could head to the pen. The former Cy Young award winner has demonstrated an ability to command his low-to-mid 90’s fastball a la Mike Timlin v. 2004-5. Colon could be another late game possibility for the pen.
6) The Olde Towne Team’s first half weakness could become a strength with Paps (shouldn‘t he be big pimping for PBR), and if Masterson and Colon transition well, Delcarmen stops tipping his pitches (thanks ESPN and Bobby Abreu), and Hideki finds his split change.