Wednesday, July 27, 2005


just words about a game -

We needed that kind of win. I've been saying it for days. But not at that cost. According to early reports, things seem to be ok, but as I watched Mattie Clement lay still on the ground... Yeah, I don't think I have to say it. We all felt it, that sick wrenching twist in our stomachs. Suddenly the game meant very little.

And yet it went on.

Reluctantly at first, many of us continue watching the game. Our hearts aren't into it, though, and perhaps Chad Bradford's wasn't either. Or maybe he just sucks. It was pretty tough to get worked up about it at that point.

And then the score began to swing back and forth. The drama of it was mercifully distracting. I felt somewhat fortunate for the fact that the station carried by last night was the devil rays'. They were good enough not to mention it, most of the time, except for when they had an update from the hospital. I think they only showed the replay once. Not that I could forget, but it was easier at that point to focus on the game.

Negative CAT or not, we were inches at most away from losing that guy. That tends to make a baseball game seem pretty small. If Mattie was "alert and coherent" as they say, it's possible he cared more about the outcome of this game than anyone else. He seems like the kind of guy who may even try to pin the blame on himself. "Jeez, if only I hadn't tried to block that line drive with MY HEAD, we wouldn't be in this crappy situation, down by two in the ninth..."

In the end it was Johnny who made the biggest play, followed by yet another just minutes later. But let us not forget that it was a team effort to keep us in it, led by our Captain and "unofficial captain" - a back-to-back rally-starting duo who together went 5/7 with four walks last night - and contributed to even by the newest member, Boston's own young Manny Delcarmen. These guys wanted to win last night, and not because they are paid to, but for something more profound. Because they are professional athletes, not doctors, and that was all they could do for their teammate.

This morning I read that Mattie might miss a start. MIGHT. A start, as in ONE. I don't even know what to say to that, as it seems incompatible with the the image in my mind, of Mattie, crumpled and motionless on the mound. I'm really, really glad you're ok, Mattie. Overwelmingly happy. We all are.

Sunday, July 24, 2005


The Point(ed) Question

I just got back from NH. I was there for less than 24 hours. The things we will do for our friends when they get married... well I'm sure my man didn't mind, either. Anyway, I rarely drive I-84 at night. When I do, I am reminded of why. I should just expect to be stuck crawling at 5 mph at some point on that road; they are always doing construction somewhere. I appreciate that they try to get most of it done at night; I just wish they would consider taking Sundays off in the summertime. Really, it may as well be rush hour. And I'm sure I'm not the only one who has noticed - if they are working on two miles of one lane of the road, for some ungodly reason, they feel the need to block off two lanes for ten miles. Thanks a lot, CT D.O.T., or whatever you call yourselves.

On the way home I heard Christin on the radio for the first time. She's been on the air for almost a year now; the only reason I've never heard her before is that I'm a complete space cadet. I guess I shouldn't tell you what station she's on (since they don't use their real names on the radio, apparently) but I could hear her whenever I'm up in Mass or Seacoast NH, which I am quite often; I just always forget. But today I saw her at this shower (which was actually fun, not at all stuffy like some I've been to) and she had to leave early to get on the air and for some crazy reason I actually remembered that and turned her station on for the ride home. Just minutes later, I had already forgotten. Halfway through a promo spot I realized that this was my friend talking. She does all the female voice promos for this station. Plus she was also on the air at the time. Yet every time I heard her, I had to remind myself that it was her. Not that it doesn't sound like her, because it does... and yet it doesn't, and it's weird.

But while we're on the subject, I may as well post a couple pics Christin just sent me tonight from Lori's camera. I promise to finally quit posting late stuff about last weekend after that.

so there's me, Pat and Christin. I realize that some people have been wondering what Pat looks like for a long time now. Well here you go.

The four of us are "pretending" that something is going on on the field here. Some of us are more convincing than others. (way to play along, pat & jere. terrible job.)

This weekend our boys played in Chicago. I was hoping for better, but I 'spose I ought not complain as the white sox are pretty damn good. But regardless of the split, I have to say our boys seem to be playing with a bit more gusto this past week. And I'm starting to like Cora. DEFINITELY an improvement on Vazquez. Although that's not exactly a tall order, is it? I could not help but notice our new boy Tony up at the plate in a key situation where you just know Bellhorn would be striking out. And Tony Graffinino... struck out.

Both last night and today, I rolled into my man's house during the game. Both times, I arrive to find the game ON, and my man watching, on the screen in the basement. And he knew what was going on. And he discussed plays earlier in the game with me. But he still insists on calling runs "points". The man believes that all scores are points. I disagree. All competitive events have scores, absolutely, and I believe those scores are always represented by numbers. I do NOT believe those numbers are all "points". In sports where there are different types of scoring, with different corresponding values, such as football and basketball, those scores are referred to as points. In games where each scoring event is of equal value, the score for that event is always one as far as I know, and is referred to by the name of the score. In golf, these are strokes (and less is more.) In Soccer, various forms of hockey, water polo, even fuseball the scoring events are referred to as goals. And in baseball, there are RUNS. Personally I don't believe that these scores are actually technically points, but my man does. So please help me out here, and agree with me in the comment thread. Or not. Also let me know if you can think of any sports where the scoring is all on equal value in which the value is something other than one OR the score is referred to as a point. Ping-pong, maybe? In Tennis, there is the term "match point" so I suppose... no, I believe there are different values involved in tennis. Although I've never understood WHY.

Saturday, July 23, 2005


Trophy in the land of no NESN

Thanks to jere for pointing it out... apparently I made it into an article I was interviewed for. Zach got a fact wrong, but considering the random information I gave him, I'm shocked he made sense of his notes at all. Zach seemed like a very nice guy and claimed to be a red sox fan. And I believe him, but I'm wondering what a yankee fan would tell people if he were given this assignment.

Even though jere had mentioned to me that the trophy was coming to Ridgefield, he's always telling me dates to remember like when ESPN will be carrying the game & such, and I promptly forget every single time. He knows I do, so I hope he doesn't stop telling me these things - since I never remember anyway, I could see how he might think "what's the point?" But really, jere, I want to know. I'll have to start writing these things down or something.

So you've probably guessed by now that I had "NO IDEA" that the trophy would be around on Thursday until I got a call a little past eleven am. It was Bobby, a yankee fan, informing me that his buddy Jon B. was going to see the trophy in Fairfield, where it would be hanging out from 12-1:30. Well I believe I've mentioned how BUSY I've been this week, so I told Bobby there was no way I was goning to make it. However, when I finished that project at 12:40, I high-tailed it out of there and called Bobby for Jon B's number.

Jon B., standing in line with his nephew & friend in the hot sun, was thrilled to hear from me. Somehow the dude had neglected to bring a camera. I agreed to purchase one on the way. Each time I talked with him, he became more frantic, telling me to hurry, so when I saw the cars I quickly parked and started running. I found Jon B. in line, about six people back. He almost ended up at the trophy with no camera. And there I was, also with no camera. Jon took a pic, which I will get eventually, I'm sure. Also the woman behind me agreed to take one with her digital and e-mail it to me. I would expect this type of friendly gesture from any good sox fan, but this was especially nice of her since I had just cut right in front of her and a few hundred other people. Of course, I haven't gotten it yet, so maybe that's her revenge. At least I have the article to prove I was actually there.


Bloggers Rock

As most of you know, I was at the Hot Stove, Cool Music show last weekend, sitting with Twitch & Empy, and Empy's friend Dave. (By the way, these people all have real names, which I do actually use, but if they don't put it on their site, I don't put it on mine.) I had met Empy back in May, but this was my first time meeting twitch, which I very much enjoyed. Also, I realized the other day that I owe her a drink; I look forward to paying her back.

I know they say you should be careful about people you meet over the internet, but I haven't had a bad egg yet. And if you believe what these SG people are writing about their get-together last weekend, (which I'm not sure about, BTW), it seems that sox bloggers are just good people. It kindof makes me want to have a big-ass blogger party, but I'm guessing that Newtown, CT is not convenient for many of you. Then I thought maybe my week at the cottage in Plymouth would work... until I realized I have no way to see the game there, it being in a national forest no-cable-allowed and all. I don't think you all would be too happy with me if I lured you all down there and then told you we couldn't see the game. But really, if any of you are content with radio, let me know.

So I'm disappointed with myself for not getting pics of the four of us at the show, or the other four (witch city & friend, jere & pat) who I kept visiting. Because the last thing you people want to see is yet another pic of Bronson...
Before he went on, I had to wait over at gate D for awhile for Christin to slip me a $20 I had lent her. While there, a some dude arrived to see Bronson, who actually came out to the gate to meet him. Other than three completely burnt security people, I was the only one to see bronson there. It would have been awkward to whip my camera out at that moment... I really wish I had a new cell that takes pics. Mine is old and antiquated.
But anyway, if you are wondering why Bronson always seems to be looking at me in my photos, well I am, too. This time I really thought his expression changed when he looked in my direction. Yeah, I'm sure I'm just imagining things.

But I'm pretty sure that I'm not imagining this photographer staring at me, wondering why I am bothering to take pictures from afar when I could just use a photo taken by professionals who are very close.
I guess it's because I would rather have crappy pictures, as long as they are mine. But thanks for rubbing it in my face about how close you are.

The music was decent, but I guess I'd have to say what I enjoyed most about the show was hanging out with my blogger cohorts and their friends. Oh, and also not having to stand in line at the bathroom. Once it was totally empty, and that was kindof creepy.


last night

wow. That game got pretty awful quickly, there. But just before all the crap, I heard a gem from a White Sox announcer: "We got ourselves a little ducksnort." eh what does that mean, exactly? Just a perk from my which was so choppy for some reason tonight that I also did not actually see either of those homeruns off Wakefield in the 6th, and choose to believe that they did not actually happen.
* as I write this, Stern hits his first mlb homerun. Nice job, boy. Keep it up; you've got two totally hot outfielders to compete with all of a sudden. (thanks theo.)*
You know what's nice about this white sox network? I've just heard an announcer question a call that went his team's way, for at least the third time tonight. They were talking all night about how knuckleballers don't get half their strikes called. That's nice honest announcing there.

Anyway, I'm aware I've been pretty lame this week. My real life has taken in exhausting fashion. Mind you, I've been watching the games, and the two I saw last night were studies in beauty. Both come-from-behind 5-4 wins. Tonight, not so great, but things are looking up as I turn the yanks on to see them down 5-1.

Yeah, I wrote all this last night before slaving away on samples till 4:30 am. guess I forgot to post. But at least the angels did the good deed and kept that lead over the yanks; final score 6-3.

Friday, July 22, 2005


a little more on pink - in the stands last saturday

I've been happy this week that people are willing to tolerate my pink. It was especially nice of Sam to give me a free pass, since I let her know about it pretty far in advance specifically to taunt her. (those of you who know me well will take that as an indication that I very much like & respect sam. the rest of you are baffled, I'm sure, and I don't totally understand it either, so I offer you this in lieu of an explanation: in a family of four girls, taunting is a way of life.) Also it was nice of Peter to suggest that my face was glowing, not shiny. I don't think anyone believes that, but even still, Peter N. has officially become my favorite commenter. Flattery will really get you places (although I'm not sure if that's where you wanted to go.)

Anyway, I totally understand the objection, but I'd like to bring up one of the positives regarding pink sportswear. To your right you will see the absolute cutest girl in the ballpark last saturday. Her hat is backwards to promote a ninth inning rally, but sadly our boys did not cooperate. This girl was cheering and yelling out players' names. How can anyone say she is not a real fan?

When I was a kid, liking pro sports was considered to be tomboy-ish. To me this was a good thing, since my neighborhood was all boys and I had to be able to hang with them, but I'm sure that's not the case for everyone. Pink sportswear lets little girls know that baseball is for them, too. And I'm all for that. This means more and more female fans as the years go on. Maybe someday girls will be able to make intelligent comments on professional sports without getting strange looks. And maybe this will be a direct result of pink hats for little girls. Just a thought.

The cute little girl, by the way, is part of the family from Savannah that I mentioned. We staked out a spot behind section 19 last week directly behind their seats. At least, we all thought they were their seats, until four yankee fangirls showed up claiming otherwise. And unfortunately the yank girls were correct, the family was in the wrong row. So they all got up to move, and in the process the mom you see up there (sorry, we got pretty friendly with this family, but did not get any of their names.) accidently spilled beer all over my foot. Although it's a little hard not to mind a beer-soaked flip-flop, I was not upset with her at all. As the game went on, however, I became rather irritated that it did not spill on these yankee fans instead. In fact, for a while I seriously considered buying a beer specifically to spill on the girl in front of me. (I was sticking to water so I could survive the whole day, and later the mom came up to me and apologized again, and had bought me a water.)

Please note that even the sweet little girl is irritated by jeter girl in front of me. Honestly, it wasn't what she was saying; I am used to yankee fans (although I was perturbed by how many of them managed to get tickets at Fenway) it was the fact that she would not shut up. She had one of those whiny voices that slowly grates on your sanity. She was talking a mile a minute. On the cell, to her friends, on the cell again... I'm telling you, the girl did not shut up the entire time. I'm really glad I didn't have any weapon-ish things on my person because I started to feel quite violent before she and her yankee posse finally decided to leave in the 6th inning. (jeez, I realize that's how it's done at their place, but if you drive all the way to boston, wouldn't you want to stay for at least most of the game? not that I'm complaining.)

At this point, Jere, the good witch & I claimed seats. Unfortunately that involved gving up our standing room directly behind, and whadda-ya-know, that standing room got taken over by your token loud-mouth, yelling not just near, but directly into jere's ear. "time to find some new standing room," jere said after a couple minutes, and witch city took off with him. I had a feeling we would not find a decent view, so I decided to stay put. Pat and my two friends were still standing behind me, so Christin hopped up into a seat. Oh, by the way, meet the Marks sisters (not to be confused with the Marx brothers) Christin & Lori.

Their seats were supposed to be pretty much exactly across the ballpark from where they ended up. They opted for standing room with us instead of center field bleachers, and getting to hang out with my friends makes me really like this standing room deal.

These are the girls I saw game one of the world series with, out in NYC, and had to hold them back when a yankee fan called our boys "dirtbags." (maybe a shot for every homerun wasn't such a good idea...) A week later, the three of us were at the parade together.

And I love these girls, even if they are wispering here about how weird bloggers are.

So even though the game was not too great (thanks a lot, sveum), the company was excellent (um, except for jeter girl and loud-mouth, i guess.) And unfortunately I am 0-2 at sox vs. yanks games, one at each park. But since the yank rotation is a joke, I was over it immediately. I did feel bad for the family from Savannah, though; having come all this way it would have been nice for them to see a win. I told them I would post pics of them, and surely they have lost hope for that by now. I am pathetic to be posting them a week later. Believe me, this week has been UGLY.
I should tell you that the father grew up a braves fan, but knows his history well enough to have a special place in his heart for Boston. He was given a choice of tickets as a gift: Red Sox @ Atlanta or Fenway. He said it was a no-brainer. In Atlanta people aren't even paying attention at the park, and by the seventh are leaving to go do the next thing. It makes me really proud to be part of Red Sox Nation when I hear things like that. And even though I know they're watching the Braves every day, hopefully these kids always have a special memory of rooting for the red sox at Fenway. Y'all come back now, ya hear?

Wednesday, July 20, 2005


I've heard there are other teams in this league...

and occasionally they do something that we ALL must see, despite the fact that they have nothing to do with the sox. So everyone be sure and check out the hot fight between the tigers & royals from sunday. And if you have, don't forget to watch the archive. well, you probably have, anyway, but I'm just making sure.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005


the trail continues

yep, more lame long-toss photos. That's our new guy, Chad Bradford arriving late (slacker) in the warm-up jacket.

That's all I've got for you tonight; I'm just too tired... but at least our boys won tonight. I'm telling you people, things are looking up. Theo & his crew have been busy, and now they're taking action, and there's no telling how the chips may fall in the end, but one thing's for sure... we are lucky fans to have such things in worthy hands. And in the meantime, I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say we're going to be winning a lot more often.


More just in

Just about immediately after I hit publish, NESN announced that we have acquired 2nd baseman Tony Graffanino. (Hey, you think this guy's Italian?) And no, not for Embree. He's still hangin' in limbo. Surely you can get more info on this elsewhere. I saw something about a .298 average but I'm not promising anything. But for those of you who have been bitchin' 'bout Bellhorn all season, perhaps this will settle the issue. I sure as hell know Alex Cora's not the answer. (although that was a pretty sweet play last inning, wasn't it?)

Anyway, good to know our beloved Theo is hard at work.


Finally, the day has come

Surely you all know this already, but Alan Embree has been designated for assignment. No longer will we need to groan as we see Captain Cheese warming in the bullpen. Sadly, I DID think he was getting better... although still not as good as we need. And his time has finally run out. Did I say FINALLY? I may miss jere's varied cheese references, but I sure won't miss the blown leads.

Now when will they wise up about Sveum?


Half-Empty? It's just an illusion

Yes, here I go again, claiming the glass is half-full.
Here we sit one half game out of first place, and I say we're sittin' pretty, and this is why: As Johnny regrettably demonstrated last night, all streaks must come to an end. The run our boys have been on has been a bad one. A very, very bad one. They've dropped 12 of the last 18 games; that's 4 of the last 5 series. That's a pathetic show of their potential, as we all know. Meanwhile in sole possession of first-place (for the first time since opening day, by the way) are the yanks, on a similar (but opposite) tear of 13 for 17, winning the last 4 series. Normally this would be bad news, for this time of year, but that is a ridiculous win rate for a rotation of their caliber. I hate to see them in first place, but usually it's because they're capable of holding onto it... this time it's just because I hate them. Because no, I really don't think they're capable.
These streaks have run their course, and the end is near for both of them. It's time for our boys to turn it around... and it's time for the Ranger's, A's & Twins to pull those yank hurlers from under cover of prince purple-lips and gary sheffanie and expose them for what they are: mediocre, and overrated at that.


more crumbs

You probably read from Jere that there was no BP on Saturday. I guess 11 am is pretty early for our boys. But some things they can't get out of, like long toss. Jere, the good witch, Pat & I watched our pen and a few starters play catch for awhile.

You would think Bronson would be practicing his guitar on Saturday morning, but thankfully he felt it was important to take care of his arm, too. There is quite a delay on my camera between pressing the button and actually snapping the picture, so I'm incredibly lucky to have caught an action shot like this one.

And here, as you can see, Bronson is clearly looking at me and offering the ball. Well, not really. At least, if he was, I certainly didn't notice at the time. So it was a nice little surprise when I zoomed in on the pic.

So, once again, gotta go. One of the many, many reasons I am limited to such short stints right now is that I am currently watching my neice, Ellie-boom. And while she is currently absolutely captivated by the last scene of Annie, I hear the closing notes as I am typing this, and soon will need to entertain the little angel again.

Ah, yes, she is looking at me, and reaching out her hand now. More crumbs later. (in case you haven't figured out, they will eventually lead to the Hot Stove, Cool Music show. And no, I have no idea what that typewriter-thing and shelf was all about. To be honest, I didn't even notice. Jere is amazing.)

Monday, July 18, 2005



Ack! Our sox have been stinkin' up the homestead lately. Terribly sad, and depressing, too. Even Johnny *sniff* has finally succumbed to the general suckitude. (We really thought you were going to break the record, Johnny.) Well I don't know what to say about tonight's utter failure, and don't have time anyway. But I've left you hangin' long enough, here's the only pic I have, apparently, of me in my pink shirt:
Isn't it amazing how SHINY my face is? I wish it were a better shot of my skirt, which rocks (I wish I could wear it every day.) But at least Pat caught almost half of Jere, and my friends Lori & Christin in the backround talking to the dad of the super-nice family from Savannah, Georgia. More on them later. And also some about other not-so-nice people in our area. But for now I must go. Yes, I'm lame, but I told you these were merely crumbs.


News Update

* the article I was directed to on Friday in the Wall Street Journal was by Allen St. John concerning their statistic "BABE". The formula for this stat is a bit vague, but seems to be in the same vein as BpB and was introduce in August of last year. Also, the concept of "bases per batter" I have consequently heard (through my bro-in-law's lawyer) was a discussion beginning in 2001. (this discussion was apparently rampant in NYC on YES and what-not, so tj jere for not picking up on it and saving me some embarrassment in the first place) So, as suspected, this concept was far too simple to be original. I'm not sure if a link to the article would work from my site; if not, try this link to baseball think factory, where I have truly embarrassed myself forever.

* I am once again hopelessly late with my pics & recount of my adventures on Saturday. They will have to come tonight. I know you're all dying to see me in pink, but you'll have to wait a pinch longer here...

* On Friday, I finally got a lead to my friend Jessie Engel on my statcounter. Naturally, this was after I had left my computer for two days, and the link to her blog has now disappeared from my log. Jessie, I KNOW you check my blog almost every day (usually around 9 AM), so PLEASE go there from yours or at least e-mail me the link, m-kay?

Saturday, July 16, 2005

I am now 3-0 at Jere's parents' place. to say the least. And I got to wake up on the sofa-bed to the sound of the waves crashing on the beach. What could be better? Jere tried to give up his bed for me, which was very chivalrous, but I am the guest who has invited herself, so as to not risk being late in the morning (which I was bound to be, as I am chronically late) and pissing Jere off on what is to be a fabulous day. Besides, a sofa-bed is just fine with me; perhaps if it were just a sofa, I might have considered humoring Jere's good manners.

There seemed to be minor concern for Wellsie's concentration last night before the game. I couldn't understand what people were worried about; the man thrives on confrontation. And indeed he had his game-face on last night, fueled to dominate. We enjoyed seeing the tape of his confrontation; on July 2nd Jere & I were both up behind center field, trying to figure out what was going on.

I remember Jere saying "Johnny's going for the cycle!" at one point, and I come back in the room saying "he's going for the cycle? in the THIRD inning?" At this point the game had been on for quite some time. The innings were rather bottom-heavy. For awhile there I think the yankees had spent more time changing pitchers than actual time at bat. Of course when they started to run out of pitchers, these totals evened out a bit. Yesterday I doubted that the sox would be able to raise Redding's ERA before getting "yanked." Well, a game ERA of 54.00 has done just that: he's gone from 9.10 to 10.57 in just one inning (plus a few batters in the 2nd).

As expected, the rag-tag joke for a pitching staff won't last forever (at least in current form) as king georgie is poised for another acquisition: Leiter. Whatever. They need a lot more than just ONE pitcher. Maybe they should put A-rod on the mound? I mean, he's so great and all... he ought to be able to throw better than Redding, at least. I liken the yanks' rotation woes to our own pen problems, with one enormous difference. I like to call that difference "theo." Is there ANYONE out there who thinks king georgie & the cash-man are capable of doing even half as well on mid-season deals as Theo? No, didn't think so. Money can't buy everything.

OMG. I am late. Yes, I'm here, but jere wants to leave in 5 minutes, and I haven't showered. I didn't notice how late it was getting, since I am the only person awake here. So I've got to rush to publish. Sorry for any typos, folks. And if anyone has access to the Wall Street Journal, Weekend Edition, check out page W8. I have not seen it yet myself, but it ought to be interesting.

Friday, July 15, 2005


I'm wearing PINK

I am my own person. I don't always "go with the flow." I am not afraid to be different. I march to the beat of my own drummer. I was raised this way. I think my mother meant it in the context of "Do what pleases the Lord, not what the world says you ought to do" but I don't believe in that part, so I just do what pleases ME.

I have my reasons for owning pink sportsgear, and usually it's not to wear to games. I understand the distaste for the fashion-colored stuff; I just don't share it. Lately I've been feeling a bit like saying "F-U pink-sports-gear-haters, you will NOT make me feel guilty for owning this stuff." I am not afraid to offend or piss people off, if that's what it takes to be myself. That's why I'll be wearing a pink ALCS t-shirt to the game & concert tomorrow. Because I feel like it, and I really don't care what any of y'all think of that.

Some of you might decide to boycott my site as a result of this. Whatever. If being someone other than myself is what it takes to get you to read my blog, I could do without your patronage. So I hope you do keep coming back, but if you can't handle seeing me in pink, you may want to skip Sunday's post.


One game does not a season make

But there's been some pretty awful ones lately; string enough of them together, and the season starts to look pretty grim, even while still in first place.

What was more depressing:
Curt giving up 2 runs in his first 2 batters of relief OR
the batter that did it to him?

I walked back into the room and saw the look on Curt's face, then prince purple-lips pulling into home. I heard my bro-in-law taunting me in my head. Before this year, I never imagined it was possible for yankee fans to be any nastier to red sox fans. I guess I never thought about how they would feel about losing. They've talked so much smack over the years, finally being put in their place has made them angry, defensive individuals. A few weeks ago my sister said to me, "you know what the problem is with you, rebecca? you are the kind of fan who is nasty about other people's teams." I didn't know quite what to say. Because I'm not nasty about "other people's teams." I'm nasty about HER team. And not as nasty as she has been over the years. And not even a fraction of as nasty as her husband is. But I'm used to being the underdog, so when the yanks were losing their shirts earlier this year, and king georgie was losing his mind, and my sister & her husband were discussing personnel firings and trade options every night, I didn't talk smack; all I did was snicker. That's what I got accused of being "nasty" for. But now I've gotta hear smack. Bullshit high-and-mighty proclamations and grand declarations of superiority. Meanwhile there is no mention of their rotation (in shambles,) the fact that this is a four game series, or the fact that we are in the middle of a 162-game season. A long season of which they are accustomed to being up by five or more games by this time, and just now beginning to pay attention to. I will not mention it either. I'd rather they be surprised. After all, a month or so ago it was "no one's gonna catch the O's this year; they're on FIRE."

Anyway, the homer off Curt didn't bother me that much. It might've been a nice wake-up call for the type of grit it takes to work out of the bullpen. I was pleased to see him bear down and pull more out of himself after that. I was NOT pleased to see our boys fooled so badly by MO in the bottom of the ninth. Have they forgotton his trickeries? Remind them, Papa Jack, 'cause next time I see MO I want to see his face in anguish.

Honestly, what pissed me off the most last night was the longball by Sheffield. I used to dislike him, but now I hold him in such utter contempt that I can barely stand the sight of him even while he's striking out. "Sportsmanship" and "the love of the game" are not concepts he understands. My client Mark told me yesterday that Gary Sheffield is one of his grandson's favorite players. Does this man realize he is supposed to be a role model? Poor little Jeremy Goldstein is only six years old; he ought not be exposed to evil the likes of "I play for my paycheck" Gary.

And so we move on, as quickly as possible, and hope for more innings tonight like the first, and less like the ninth. We pray that Boomer has something to prove to his ex-cohorts tonight, and we wonder who the hell is this dude Tim Redding, and is it even possible to raise his ERA before they pull him from the game? We're sad that reb has no time to figure his BpB and PoP stats. Well at least I am sad about that. Were it not for the anti-ergonomics of reb's desk, we could have a whole spreadsheet on yankees pitching to look at today, which would surely make us feel a whole lot better. oh well, we shall have to rely on Boomer then (sorry to let you all down).

Tonight I will be watching the game on NESN, in the pleasant company of Jere and his parents. At worst, it will still better than hearing the game commentary of the insufferable Michael Kay. But I am 2-0 at Jere's parents' place this season, so I'm feeling pretty good about tonight. Boys, it's time to turn the beat around.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


Dead Arms

Y'all don't know how relieved I am to have an all-star break right now. It seems that I have developed a rather severe case of tendonitus. It's something I have been denying and ignoring for quite some time now, until finally I simply could not move my arm. One of my sisters is in "pain management", meaning she has quite the regular supply of extra-strength Vikadon, and let me tell you, that stuff did absolutely nothing for my pain. I've switched my mouse to the other hand because I'm afraid if I click it one more time, my tendon may just jump right out of my skin.

This weekend I was called into duty to help my sister while she had her in-laws staying over. Since I could not click my mouse, I needed her pain-killers, AND it was sweltering and she just had a pool built, I really did not mind. Of course this means that I missed the last two games with the O's entirely, which in hindsight seems like a good thing.

But while I was there, resting my arms, it seems I have managed to aggravate them further, this time just the actual muscles, which are rather used to abuse anyway. My l'il neice's cousin Vivi wanted to swim, but her mother could not go in the pool this weekend. So, being the kind-hearted and child-loving gal that I am, I volunteered to swim with her.

I am told that Vivi is three. In height she looks more like six or seven. In my estimation, she is actually able to STAND on the bottom of the shallow end (she would probably have to keep her chin up), but she refuses to even try. I am not making fun of her at all when I say she must be close to eighty pounds. I just know that I was sixty pounds in 3rd grade, and I was a twig not much taller than she is now. Again, I am not making fun of Vivi when I say she looks like a brunette Miss Piggy. She is three years old, for chrissakes, she is not in control of what she is fed or how much exercise is encouraged. Also, I do not know what her medical issues may be (although the most obvious explanation would be giganticism, and apparently that's not the case.) Vivi also has a little temper issue. If she does not like something, she screeches so loud you would not even believe it. And guess what? She did not want to get out of the pool all day long. It was all I could do to get out every twenty minutes to take a swig of my beer. I was holding this girl up in the water for HOURS.

That was Sunday. Yesterday I woke up and could not move either arm. And I'm a painter, so this is kindof a problem. I'm feeling a bit better today, but in case you're wondering why I'm not bloggin' away about the fact that I thought bobby abreau would NEVER make his tenth out, well this is why. hopefully my arms will work again soon.

Saturday, July 09, 2005


What is the Opposite of Vandalism?

I like to think of it as the removal of unattractive objects seen on public property.

This is another little tid-bit from last weekend, by the way.
Jere, Pat, Kim & I exited the stadium last Saturday, We parted ways with Kim as we were headed in opposite directions toward our cars. So Jere, Pat & I were milling down Landsdowne Street with hundreds of other sox fans and a few unwise individuals trying to drive their vehicles down the road. First let me say that I don't know why anyone would do that immediately after a game ends at Fenway. But to do that with a yankees symbol on your fancy SUV, well I'd say that's just asking for it, wouldn't you?
I was very upset with myself for not taking a picture of the back of this vehicle, still with the little stcky things on it, as proof of where I got it from. In retrospect, I suppose I'm a lot better off that way. After all, there were hundreds of sox fans on Landsdowne and at least a few SUV's trying to get through, and although I would be shocked to find out that more than one of them had a yankees arachnoid stuck to them, it is possible, and I certainly didn't do anything that any other self-respecting red sox fan might have done, and of course there were hundreds of us present, perhaps even thousands who had access to the arachnoid(s) stuck to the back of the SUV(s). So if you're reading this, and you think perhaps it was your SUV that this unnattractive item was removed from... A) if you are a yank fan, what are you doing on a blog called "Reb Sox" ? B) you'll never prove it was me, and C) there are others who might have done much worse, had they seen it. Perhaps you ought to thank me for removing you from possible grave danger.
Oh and by the way, even though this is a related event to my vandalism post, I can't name it "Adventures of Reb & Jere" because for the record, Jere wanted nothing to do with this. I know a lot of you yankee fans read Jere's blog for some absurd reason, so don't get down on him for it; this was ALL ME.

Edit: Jere has e-mailed me to point out the the truck was not public property. Well of course the truck was private property, but I was most certainly on public property when all this occurred, which is what I meant. I really don't know why he has such a big problem with this. It's a stupid plastic arachnid, for chrissakes. It's not like it's actually worth anything. It's not like I actually damaged the car in any way, in fact I most likely saved it from damage. Can you imagine what some drunk college kids might have done, had they seen that? I think a few swift kicks would've had a lot more impact on the value of this "private property" than my silly little prank.

Friday, July 08, 2005


The PoP Question - Again

It's been almost 24 hours since I asked for input on the positive outing percentage cut-off point. About forty "unique visitors" have at least had the opportunity to consider the question during that time. That guy over there on the right is the only one to have put his two cents in, which were... indecisive, shall we say?
(By the way, have you ever met anyone who is psychologically unable to say their own name? Well if you've met Jere, you have. Dude can't even say "cherry" because it sounds too similar. I'm serious. I was talking to him last night, and he inserted my cat's name for his own while reading me a quote.)
So, back to the PoP. It's most likely that no one cares about this stat, and therefore no one cares what would be considered "positive" as they are unlikely to look at it anyway. Best case scenario, there are people who DO care, but consider me to be all-wise and better qualified to make the call. I don't think that's the case, but since no one's chiming in I guess I'd better just figure it out myself.
When I made up this stat, I had no standard to go by, obviously. I just had to relate the numbers to how I felt about the pitching in a particular game to understand the kind of quality that number indicated. My original reaction was that all the really good games were under .500. As I began charting, however, that area between .5 and .6 began to look more and more solid. In considering this question, I have tried to think about it in terms of the simple ratio involved. A pitcher giving up three bases in the span of five batters (.600) is sometimes scored upon, but not most of the time. But the tables turn with the next simple ratio: two bases awarded for every three batters (.667) is quite a bit more marginal as a performance. I think scoring happens a lot more with this ratio. So I'm going to say that anything .600 and below gives the team a very solid chance to win. As I mentioned in the comments yesterday, this would change Miller's PoP from 55 to 81%, and Clement's from 61 to 89%. I would have to say that those numbers more accurately describe my gut feeling on the matter. (By the way, this would move Foulkie to 83% last year and 68% this year, and 68% is still pretty unacceptable. A "closer" is not someone who pitches marginally to horribly, risking the team's opportunity to win, nearly ONE THIRD of the time.)
Also, I realize that there's some stat out there relating to quality starts. Of course that stat is not likely to satisfy me as it's criteria is unlikely to be all that similar to BpB. Besides, this is to measure quality outings, not just starts, which in my opinion makes it immensely more useful. Particularly for Red Sox Nation, as we seem to have some... um, ISSUES with our pen at the moment, eh?
This is officially your last chance to express an opinion on this before I do a lot more calculations. All the raw data is available in the spreadsheets linked on the left, so consider it now or forever hold your peace.


Theo Pops the Question

I know, I know. I took this picture almost a week ago.
It's completely pathetic that it's taken me that long to upload it from my camera.
But it's a lot more interesting now, isn't it?


On the Block

ok, I can understand that Jay never wanted to come here. I can understand why a ball-player who has worked his ass off (I can say that, guys; I'm not on feedster) to get a starting outfielder position in the big leagues might be a bit peeved when that job is pulled out from under him. I can understand that perhaps the only way out of the situation was to make a nuisance of himself in the locker room. And I can appreciate that Jay does not share Gary Sheffield's attitude on the matter.

Still I felt like working up this photo a bit. Sadly, it's not even good. As an artist, paintbrush depresses me. I have no control with my mouse, and no clue how to make anything look how I want it to. I made this in photoshop, with every tool imaginable at my disposal, most of which I have no idea how to use properly. But give me a real paintbrush...

Yeah, so anyhow, at least Jay was good enough to try and play well. I don't think he was flubbing any catches out there on purpose, as Gary Sheffield might have in this situation. And he did hit that grand slam for us awhile ago, remember? But I think his attitude has been apparent to all of us even through the tv screen. (and more obvious up close & personal, BTW, which makes me wonder if he's just got an aggravated personality.) I can't see how having him around could possibly be good for team morale. The minor grumblings we've been hearing lately indicate a discord in the clubhouse that must be rectified. I just wish Jay's unhappiness could've been a bit less public. Everyone knows that he is forcing Theo's hand... which means we'll be getting less for him.

I suppose less for theo might still be more than any other GM would get.

Thursday, July 07, 2005


Keith Foulke, and the birth of PoP

With Keith back in Boston and headed for the DL, I've wondered if people actually want to see this. So I asked Jere. He said yes, he definitely wants to see it. So maybe this is just for him:

The moment I completed this chart, and looked at it, I wondered how can I interpret this?

Suddenly I remembered the most interesting part of my very first chart, the one without quantified numbers... I had divided the outings into categories and I had counted up the outings in each category. And in the end it was the most useful to know the percentage of successfull outings. And thus, a new ratio is born. So before we sweep Keith Foulke completely out of our present memory, let us note that his PoP (positive outing percentage) has dropped from 73% in 2004 to 57% in 2005. And yes, I know we don't have much to compare that to, yet... it seems I have a great deal more number crunching in my future.

It seems to me that the PoP is useful for all pitchers, but most useful for relievers. While relievers sometimes suffer from a smaller sample size in batters, the starters have a smaller sample size in outings. The charts, which are very telling for starters, are very confusing for relievers, and the PoP is much easier for the mind to wrap around. Anyway, here it is... another fascinating statistic brought to you by Reb Sox. Do with it what you will.

Edit: the BpB cutoff for PoP is currently set at <.500. Anyone who cares, please take a look at the charts and let me know if you think this is acceptable, or if we ought to move it up to <.600, or something else. Your input is appreciated. -reb

Wednesday, July 06, 2005


BpB Explained

In the past two weeks, I have fielded many questions regarding my statistic, Bases per Batter. It has become clear through that process that a clearer, more streamlined explanation of BpB would be helpful to people. Please take a look at it; I have published this definitive as a guest column over at Most Valuable Network.

For those of you coming here from MVN, welcome! Can I get you some coffee? Oh, right, you are looking for stats. Of course. There are links on the left to two workbooks I've gotten up so far. The first is the Red Sox pitching, and has lots of charts, but the information isn't very detailed. The second, of league leaders, has the breakdown shown for bases calculation.

These workbooks are not up to date. I will do my best to fix this before I leave this morning, but it's a bit of a crunch.

I just returned from the holiday, and ought to have taken care of that last night. But naturally I completely forgot about this column coming out today... as I was distracted by more research. Check back here for more statistics in the near future, including a workbook on closers. Even though he's headed for the DL, I thought we all might want to see the numbers of our dear Foulkie as compared to last year. And yes, I've collected the data from last year. (Some of you may now realize why I didn't even have time to update last night, as I was doing this instead.)

Tonight I will be fooling around with the charts to try and get the lines to show together on one of them, so we can more easily see the differences. It's a good thing I don't have that stuff ready, as blogger images does not want to work this morning. So check back tomorrow for some fascinating analysis.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005


Hold me Back, Please

just a quick note before I travel back to CT:
(once I am there I will no doubt expound on this very subject)

Kill Keith

I'm usually not negative like this. I really don't know what has come over me. Likewise, I don't know what's come over him, and right now I don't really care, I just wanna see blood.

Surely I will have calmed down before I reach home this evening. At that point, I will have a more constructive attitude. I will funnel this energy into research. I will find better relievers. I'm confident I won't have to look far. I could pick a reliever at random and he will be at least marginally better than anyone in our pen. (ok, maybe not Timlin.) So yes, red sox fans, at least there's something to look forward to. As if a bunch of numbers and charts are going to help.

Friday, July 01, 2005


The short story

the good news:
things are looking up. stats to the left are currently enabled. The BpB definitive may be published after the weekend over at MVN; that part I will keep you posted on.

the bad news:
I will be away this weekend. I may be able to post, but will not be able to update stats. whatever, I'm sure you people have stuff going on this weekend, too.

So have a good one everyone, and if you're at Fenway on Saturday, look for me.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?