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But Can He Pitch?



Updated: 2017-03-26T10:30:54-04:00

 



Red Sox vs. Twins lineups: Here’s (basically) the Opening Day lineup

2017-03-26T10:30:54-04:00

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We have a glimpse of what the lineup card could look like when the Red Sox open their season.

We’re in the home stretch of spring training, and with the roster getting trimmed down we’re getting closer and closer to seeing lineups full of regulars on the field. On Sunday, the Red Sox will pretty much have that. This lineup is likely extremely close to the one we’ll see on April 3.

  1. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  2. Andrew Benintendi, LF
  3. Mookie Betts, RF
  4. Hanley Ramirez, DH
  5. Mitch Moreland, 1B
  6. Xander Bogaerts, SS
  7. Jackie Bradley, CF
  8. Pablo Sandoval, 3B
  9. Christian Vazquez, C

Starting Pitcher: Chris Sale

There are a couple differences here than what we can expect on Opening Day. The first is that Christian Vazquez is starting behind the plate. The defensive whiz is almost certainly going to make the Opening Day roster and will get a good chunk of the playing time behind the plate, but Sandy Leon will be there to start the year. The other difference is the starting pitcher. Chris Sale is the best pitcher on this team, but Rick Porcello earned the Opening Day nod and rightfully received it.

Besides that, though, it appears this is where John Farrell wants to start the year. All spring, we’ve heard they wanted to put Benintendi so high in the lineup despite his lack of experience. It looks like they’re sticking to that plan, and for good reason. I’d swap Betts and Benintendi, but that’s picking nits.

The one real issue I have is putting Mitch Moreland in the number five spot. He’s one of the three worst hitters in this lineup, so having him there is a little strange. I understand wanting to split up the righties and lefties, but even if that’s the idea why not put Jackie Bradley there and Moreland in the seventh hole? Complaining about lineup order on a day-to-day lineup is kind of gauche and I hate myself for doing it, but I have no self-control.

You can catch this one on NESN or listen to it on WEEI.

EDIT: Might help if I mention that the game starts at 1:05 PM ET.




Red Sox spring training: Another round of roster cuts

2017-03-26T08:41:48-04:00

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We’re getting closer to the Opening Day roster

Spring training is almost over. The last game in Fort Myers will be this coming Thursday, which will be followed by a game in Washington and another contest against the Nationals in Annapolis on Saturday. Then, it’s time for real baseball again. The season being so close means time is running out for the Red Sox to decide on their Opening Day roster. On Sunday, the team took another step towards that goal with their next round of roster cuts.

Want Brentz? Our lines are open. Call now! And tell us who to trade him for in the comments. That’s all we’ve got today. Enjoy your weekend.




Red Sox at Blue Jays lineup: The rest of the best

2017-03-24T12:00:03-04:00

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The Sox roll out a reserve-heavy lineup today.

It’s a light day in Red Sox Nation. A day after Dustin Pedroia raised his spring average to .500 and Pablo Sandoval just kept hitting, the Sox roll out a lineup heavy on second-teamers against the Jays, with a recovered Drew Pomeranz on the mound (1:07 p.m., televised on MLB.tv through the Jays feed). Here’s that with which we’re workin’:

  1. Brock Holt, SS, \o/
  2. Josh Rutledge, 2B
  3. Marco Hernandez, 3B
  4. Sam Travis, 1B
  5. Blake Swihart, DH
  6. Steve Selsky, RF
  7. Rusney Castillo, CF
  8. Bryce Brentz, LF
  9. Christian Vazquez, C

SP: Drew Pomeranz

Supermarket-goer J.A. Happ goes for Toronto, which is to say I saw a tweet yesterday of someone running into him in the produce aisle but can’t find it now.




Predicting the 2017 Red Sox with Out of the Park Baseball

2017-03-24T11:00:03-04:00

How does the sim game see Boston’s year going? Out of the Park Baseball came out this week, which usually means I’ve done literally nothing but play Out of the Park Baseball. Being on vacation, I haven’t played as much as years past, but I’ve still gotten a chance to mess around with it. If you aren’t familiar with it, OOTP is a text-based sim game that allows you to take over as GM, Manager or both of your favorite team of a fictional team. It is outstanding and one of my favorite days of every year is when it is released. It is also a relatively realistic sim game, so for the second consecutive year I simmed through an entire season — letting to AI do all the work — to see what it thought would happen to the Red Sox in 2017. Let’s go month by month. Preseason First, let’s look at how things go in the month leading up to the season. In this year’s version of the game, they’ve added the World Baseball Classic to the mix, and in the simulation the Dominican Republic took home the trophy with Carlos Martinez winning tournament MVP. In Red Sox world, the team designated Christian Vazquez for assignment in mid-March and the catcher was claimed by the White Sox. Boston also signed Ronald Belisario to a one-year deal. This all led to a very strange roster that included having Joe Kelly in the rotation, Robbie Ross in the minors and Andrew Benintendi at DH. It’s a great game, but it’s not perfect. All-in-all, the game predicts Boston will win 87 games and the American League East. On the prospect side of things, it has Benintendi as its number one prospect, Jason Groome at number nine, Rafael Devers at number 97 and Roniel Raudes at number 99. April The Red Sox got off to a good start in this sim, going 16-9 through the first month of the year and finishing April 1 1⁄2 games over the Yankees for first place in the division. Unsurprisingly, the Kelly-to-the-rotation experiment didn’t last very long, as he was moved to the bullpen after one start with Steven Wright taking his spot. Beyond that, not much went on for the team. They added a little more bullpen depth with Jordan Walden, who signed a one-year deal at the start of the season. Mookie Betts also suffered a concussion towards the end of the month that was to keep him out for up to three weeks. Steve Selsky took his place on the roster. As far as performance goes, two of Boston’s prospects were honored for theirs. Andrew Benintendi won American League Rookie of the Month and Rafael Devers was the Eastern League Player of the Month. May The month of May was a quieter one for Boston, both in terms of record and performance. They ended up going 13-14 for the month, putting them six games above .500 on the season and three games up on the Yankees in the division. Not much was going on in terms of transactions, though. Betts would end up returning to the lineup with about a week left in the month, and Dustin Pedroia was banged up with a couple injuries but was playing through them. At this point in the year, Chris Sale was leading the rotation and Hanley Ramirez was leading the offense. Things were about to get wild, though. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images June Overall, this ended up being another rough month for the Red Sox, and it also gave us a preview of the insane summer Dave Dombrowski was going to put us through. They went 12-16 and fell to second place, finishing June one game behind the Rays. Things got started with a trade that sent Blake Swihart and Jason Groome to Seattle for Danny Valencia. I audibly chuckled thinking of what the reaction would be to that deal in real life. Of course, the reaction would be reasonable. Sometimes, video games are weird. After that, Dan Butler was called up and Mitch Moreland was designated for assignment to make room for Valencia. The latter would clear waivers and take his assignment to Pawtucket. Later in the month, the same would happen to Fernando Abad when the team claimed Michael Mariot of[...]



FanPost Friday - Favorite Baseball Game?

2017-03-24T10:00:02-04:00

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There are many ok video games out there for baseball, some are even passable. There’s also the excellent MLB the Show series. Which is your favorite?

This week, with only two FanPost Fridays separating us from the regular season, we do something relevant, ask what your favorite baseball video game is.

How is this relevant? Well, the new MLB the Show game (which I have had pre-ordered for months, with steelbook!) is coming out on Tuesday, and just like that, I will be a ghost, haunting only my PS4 for the next seven months. Writing for you will not be outofleftfield, but the mere shell of him, as he dedicates the rest of his life to playing every game by every team in every season of franchise mode (15*162, you do the math).

So before this self-induced game-coma comes to fruition, I figure I should ask if there are conflicting opinions.

What is your favorite baseball “game”? It can be a video game, a card game, or any kind of game that you desire. If you chose a video game, what’s your preferred mode of play? Franchise? Career/Road to the Show? Diamond Dynasty? If you chose a card game, how many people do you need to play? Give us details about whichever item/medium you chose.

Video games draw people together. Even bad video games. Card games are very similar. One thing that does not draw people together are screaming children at 7 AM (no, seriously, there are like 3 of them who woke me up at 7 AM. They are at least 10 years old, and just being jerks, playing outside, how dare they). Write about games, not screaming children.