FanDuel - WFBC

October 13, 2013

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle:

A place to discuss the sports stories that aren't making news, share links that aren't quite front-page material, and diagram plays on your hand. Remember to count to five Mississippi before commenting in anger.

posted by huddle to general at 06:00 AM - 25 comments

Coverage of the Red Sox-Tigers game by FOX couldn't have been more annoying. Towards the end the constant shots of worried, distraught fans, one after another, was mind-numbing. It's the first time I was almost forced to turn off a potential no-hit bid, 1-0 game because I couldn't take it.

posted by dyams at 08:02 AM on October 13

Benoit takes so long to pitch FOX didn't know what to do. Games like that are why some people hate baseball. That was the longest 1-0 game I have ever seen.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 08:15 AM on October 13

I think a lot of near no hitters have been broken up with one out in the ninth over the years. With that one hit being the only hit of the game for the team that was being no hit.

This scenario was burned into my brain in 1969, when Tom Seaver one hit the Cubs. Still one of the most amazing games I've ever watched. I think that summer alone, there were three or so of those games. And I think this type of game happened to Seaver at least twice.

But I guess that's all small potatoes if you're Dave Steib.

posted by beaverboard at 09:34 AM on October 13

My all time favorite one-hitter was a Mike Mussina near-perfect game, which happened on September 2, 2001 as the Red Sox hosted the Yankees on the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball game of the week.

The game had been a real pitcher's duel, 0-0 through 8 innings before the Yankees plated one in the top of the 9th off David Cone, who'd scattered 6 hits through 8 1/3 before that run. Meanwhile, Mike Mussina has been cruising, and now with a 1-0 lead he enters the 9th and gets two quick outs. The Sox send up the certifiably nutty Carl Everett as a pinch hitter, and Mussina gets ahead on a 1-2 count, one strike away from the win and 1-0 perfect game.

Wouldn't you know it? Everett laces a clean-as-a-whistle, no-doubter single into left center, and is promptly replaced by a pinch runner. Trot Nixon, the 28th Boston batter, runs the count to 3-2 before a weak ground out ends the game.

It was still a loss, and the Sox did nothing that year, finishing with 82 wins and a full 13.5 back of the Yankees in the AL East, but man was I jumping up and down with glee when Everett hit that single. Mike Mussina was probably a great guy, but this was pre-2004 and the idea of the Sox being humiliated by the Yankees with a nationally televised perfect game at Fenway was too much to take.

This game 1 loss was a tough game to take as a Sox fan; they had multiple chances to score, including a bases loaded situation in the sixth on three walks by Sanchez... but seemed to be perpetually fooled and overaggressive with his breaking stuff, swinging at balls out of the zone and then bitching mightily as they walked off (that last Ortiz at bat, he looked completely lost!). They can score runs in droves, but couldn't scrape out even one run last night, and seemed they were pressing and overeager.

By the end, a part of me wasn't even sure if I wanted them to get a hit in the ninth, except that similar to the Mussina game I describe above, it was still a 1-0 game, and with that hit we got the tying run on and down to second, and Drew did have that loud foul ball that if he'd been 2 milliseconds later on his swing would have been a walk-off homerun. In a way, getting no-hit in the loss would almost have been better, putting a real fire into the team for being humiliated; losing as they did, there's a lot second guessing of "We could have won with just one piece of timely hitting", or if the DP turn in the 6th had been a hair faster, the inning would have ended before the Jhonny Peralta single that scored Cabrera making it 1-0... and the team might come out for game 2 with less fury, and less to prove.

Kinda crazy to have two 1-0 games in the LCSes on the same day. But as someone on SoSH pointed out, the Sox are basically playing with house money: they're in the ALCS, and most people figured they'd be near the cellar of the AL East when the season started. Way ahead of schedule on their "rebuilding" from the year long nightmare that was Bobby Valentine. And this series is far from over. It could be a sweep, it could be a seven game series, but these are two very talented, well-matched teams, and only one of them can win. I hope it's the Sox, and a lopside win tonight would do a lot to send the series back to Detroit 1-1 with the "momentum" feeling like it's going our way.

posted by hincandenza at 07:10 PM on October 13

Jags Cover! Jags Cover! Jags Cover!

posted by beaverboard at 08:28 PM on October 13

David Ortiz, you magnificent bastard!

(And I'm cheering AGAINST the Red Sox!)

posted by grum@work at 12:41 AM on October 14

K...that didn't work...never mind...

posted by MeatSaber at 12:57 AM on October 14

Yeah, the SoSh board went positively nuclear after that shot- there were several pages beforehand of outright begging for the improbable slam, and then... it fucking HAPPENED.

I still say I agree with the above statement that this whole LCS is "found money" for the Sox (although now it really underscores how much impact Ortiz has to that lineup, and how hard it will be to replace him), but at least we have a series again, and it looks like a doozie! Both of these games have been epic- thrilling, nail-biting, tense, close games showing off the excellence of both teams' talents.

posted by hincandenza at 03:15 AM on October 14

I presume "WEEI" is the noise Hunter made.

You can see the bullpen catcher catch the ball.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:34 AM on October 14

/double post

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:34 AM on October 14

/Triple post!

One more and I'd have had a grandslam post.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:34 AM on October 14

If Hunter doesn't over run the ball, he might end up making one of the most famous catches in playoff history.

posted by grum@work at 11:39 AM on October 14

If he hadn't, he might indeed have, yes.

posted by Hugh Janus at 01:20 PM on October 14

Yeah, I was thinking about that a lot in watching the replays repeatedly... he really almost caught that, and it would have been an absolute dagger in the Sox along with one of the all time greatest catches.

But that's in some parallel universe; in this one, he didn't catch it, so we go to Detroit 1-1!

posted by hincandenza at 01:47 PM on October 14

The Red Sox have K'd something like 33 times in the first two games. They had less than a 4 percent chance of winning before they scored their first run. They took basically a game and a half to score their first run.

The Tigers have the Red Sox right where they want to, home field advantage and Verlander on the hill (and should be favored to still win the series). And yet the Red Sox have to feel amazingly lucky at this point. Wow.

posted by justgary at 02:44 PM on October 15

The Tigers have the Red Sox right where they want to, home field advantage and Verlander on the hill (and should be favored to still win the series). And yet the Red Sox have to feel amazingly lucky at this point. Wow.

To look at it another way, Detroit might just have Boston right where Boston wants to be. Detroit's bull pen is not the team's strength, to say the least. Witness 4 pitchers each being charged a run on Ortiz's slam, and another reliever giving up the game winner. Boston's batting approach all season has been to be patient at the plate, force the starter to throw a lot of pitches, and get to the opponent's relievers. Granted, Verlander is capable of throwing well over 100 pitches and still being ready to make his next start, but if he shows just one little weakness that results in Leyland going to his bull pen, Red Sox can steal one.

posted by Howard_T at 03:26 PM on October 15

If your path to victory requires getting to the bullpen after Justin Verlander, I don't think it can be said you're right where you want to be.

posted by rcade at 03:38 PM on October 15

To look at it another way, Detroit might just have Boston right where Boston wants to be.

Oh, the Red Sox could certainly win it, but I don't think that proves the Red Sox are where they want to be. But the situation could easily be worse.

posted by justgary at 04:14 PM on October 15

If your path to victory requires getting to the bullpen after Justin Verlander, I don't think it can be said you're right where you want to be.

On the other hand ...

posted by rcade at 07:18 PM on October 15

Ugh. Cabrera and Fielder both strike out with the game tying run on third. Wonderful.

Also, Austin Jackson must be performing historically bad from the lead off position.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 09:22 PM on October 15

Howard may not be Prussian, but he's got some prescient in him.

posted by beaverboard at 10:02 PM on October 15

Howard may not be Prussian, but he's got some prescient in him.

Not Prussian, but with a healthy dose of Portugese, Sephardic Jew among several other strains. My mom was one who seemed to have a bit of ESP with things, but she never predicted a winning set of numbers on the lottery.

Verlander will be available, at best, for game 7 unless he can go on 3 days' rest.. Should Peavy or Lester be able to keep Detroit down, Boston has a good chance to go back home with a 3-2 series lead. While Verlander was outstanding in today's game 3, and the Tigers' bullpen had no bearing on the outcome, it was indeed one small mistake that swung the game. In the meantime, the much maligned - at least among many Boston fans - John Lackey over-achieved. The Boston bullpen is also among the over-achievers, but Uehara has been doing what he did in game 3 for much of the season. It may well be that some of Boston's pitching success stems from manager John Farrell being an ex pitcher and later an ex pitching coach.

posted by Howard_T at 12:13 AM on October 16

Also, Austin Jackson must be performing historically bad from the lead off position.

He's scored one run during these playoffs.

There are 46 pitchers in the National League who had a higher OBP in 2013 (in at least the same number of plate appearances) than what Jackson has put up in these playoffs (.143) so far.

Side note: Holy crap, Zack Greinke did well with his bat this year.

posted by grum@work at 08:34 AM on October 16

Verlander will be available, at best, for game 7 unless he can go on 3 days' rest.. Should Peavy or Lester be able to keep Detroit down

I think tonight's game will be the decider. If the Red Sox win, they get 3 cracks at taking the series. If they lose, they have to take two games from the same set of starting pitchers that dominated them in the first three games.

Greinke's numbers this year are way beyond "outlier". 7 walks when he only had 3 in all previous years (and strangely all 3 came in 2011).

posted by yerfatma at 09:38 AM on October 16

Greinke comes back from an 0-2 hole to drive in a 2-out run!

posted by yerfatma at 04:56 PM on October 16

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