Friday, September 18, 2009

Welcome to post #1,000!

Five reasons why I think the Red Sox will win the World Series:
  • Starting pitching: I don't want to read too much into one start, but Daisuke Matsuzaka's performance against an Angels team that is second in the American League in runs scored was extremely encouraging. If we can get a Daisuke that resembles the guy who pitched for this team in 2006 and 2007 and add him to Josh Beckett, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholtz, you have a better starting rotation than any of the competition, including the Yankees.
  • Bullpen: With the addition of Billy Wagner, the Red Sox have the deepest bullpen of any of the playoff competitors. My one concern: how will rookie Daniel Bard react to the post-season pressure?
  • The two biggest holes in the lineup have been fixed: Jason Varitek's bat and Nick Green's glove were the two biggest problems with the Red Sox lineup going into the trading season and both have been addressed. Victor Martinez has solidified the middle of the lineup, and the defensive difference between him and Varitek has been hardly noticable. Alex Gonzalez may not have the insane amount of range he had during his 2006 tour of duty with the Red Sox, but he still gets to plenty of balls, makes every play, and has incredibly quick hands.
  • Defense: Unlike their opponents, the Red Sox have "plus" defensive players at four positions: Youkilis at first base, Pedrioia at second, Gonzalez at short and Ellsbury in center field. While Lowell's range is reduced, he makes pretty much every play he can get to. Bay and Drew aren't stellar corner outfielders, they can both more than hold their own defensively. Great defense means more outs and less of a strain on the pitching staff.
  • Experience: None of the other AL contenders have the Red Sox depth of experience in the post-season. Not even the Yankees. While the Yankees "old guard" of Jeter, Posada, Pettitte and Rivera has experienced plenty of October success, key players like A-Rod and Sabathia have struggled in October. Others, like A.J. Burnett and Joba Chamberlain haven't had much of a taste of the playoff atmosphere. The same can be said of the Angels and Tigers.
Add up all those factors, assume no injuries and guys play up to their capabilities, and we could be seeing another parade here in early November.


At 4:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are high if you think the Red Sox can beat the Yanks


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