Results tagged ‘ JD Drew ’
Now, I was there firsthand tonight. However, as I was working, I am not sure how everything transpired. I know Miguel Cabrera got hit near the wrist OR on the knob of the bat area. I know Victor Martinez was not happy getting an inside fastball thrown to him. The first inning and a half took so long to go by, that all I knew it was 8pm.
A fan seated in the last row of the 3rd base field box seats had just stopped me to buy some ice when Youkilis got plunked and all bedlam broke loose. Youk charged the mound, the whole park was on there feet as dugouts and bullpens emptied out. Chants of: “Youk, Youk, Youk.” From my view, it look like Youk had a nice take down and the excitement was electric in the little band box. The umpired then held a conference as another chant of “Throw him out” went up. The umpires then through out Porcello.
A little later, another on-field fracas took place when Terry Francona came out to agure with the 2nd base umpire after he called Drew out trying to steal second. Francona was hot, and as he turned to head back to the dugout, he got tossed by the ump. Francona went off more, and the crowd started a “Terry” chant. Any replays I saw, showed that the play was CLOSE, but I think the umpire got the call right.
After I got home, I caught some of the discussion on MLB Tonight. Mitch Williams and Joe Magrane were discussing the incident. Both of them agreed that Porcello did not throw intentionally at Youk. Williams had said the pitch was a two-seam fastball. Magrane or Matt Vasgersian (I think it was Matt) said wouldn’t you throw a four seam fastball if you were going to hit someone. Williams said, “Yes, plus it would hurt more.” Now, I don’t really know the difference between a 2 seam and 4 seam, but in my opinion, he was not trying to hit Youkilis. They also made note of Porcello’s reaction after he threw the pitch. You can tell from his reaction, that he is upset that the pitch hit him. I agree with Williams and Magrane, after further review.
During this discussion, MLB Tonight showed the incidents in last night’s game where Brad Penny hit Cabrera. This was followed by Edwin Jackson hitting Youkilis in the ribs with a pitch. That was OBVIOUSLY intentional. Youkilis would have been less in the wrong charging Jackson. However, Jackson isn’t a 20 year old rookie, so maybe Youkilis was a little apprehensive about charging Jackson.
Even worse for Youk, he got tossed down to the ground by the rookie. I was actually looking forward to be able to see the incident when I got home, because it looked like it was a good take down by Youk from my view along the 3rd base line. Unfortunately, Youk was wrong to charge the mound, and ended up getting thrown down and I would judge as the loser in the brawl. Finally, to add insult to injury, the Sox are going to lose his bat for anywhere from 5 – 8 games.
Oh yeah, one last thing. This incident overshadowed the performance of rookie pitcher Junichi Tazawa. Tazawa got his first career win. He went 5 innings, allowing 3 runs (1 earned) on 4 hits and 2 walks while striking out 6. He was probably a Nick Green error (another one?) from allowing zero runs, thus probably being able to got 6 or 7 innings. In the first, Tazawa got Carlos Guillen to ground into what seemed like an inning ending double play. However, Green’s throw was terrible, and the Sox weren’t able to even get 1 out, never mind the 2. This allowed a run to score, and eventually 2 more scored.
However, Tazawa pitched well despite the errors, and shut down the Tigers the rest of the night. This is looking like a nice signing for the Red Sox. He pitched well in his debut in New York, despite giving up the game losing HR. He’s got good stuff, and I’m looking forward to seeing more from him.
In the end, even though Youkilis was wrong to charge, that incident may have been a spark plug because later that inning, Jason Bay CRUSHED (and I mean CRUSHED) a 3-run HR to tie the game. Also, luckily, for the Sox, they may end up being able to absorb Youkilis’ upcoming suspension with the likes of Mike Lowell. He may be showing the lingering effects of his hip injury, but the guy can still hit. He and Tazawa (along with Bay’s bomb) were the stars of the game, but the Youkilis brawl stole the show and is what everyone will be talking about the next day or so.
PS. Sorry for my long absence. You may read more about that in the future.
Think about this. The highest paid player on your team doesn’t play versus left-handed pitchers. Could you imagine Albert Pujols sitting or
Manny Ramirez sitting (well, yes I can imagine him sitting, that’s not a good example) or A-Rod sitting? Or, how about Ryan Howard, Carl Crawford, or Ichiro Suzuki? However, when you are this guy:
You don’t start versus left-handed pitchers anymore. Against the first two LHP opposing starters the Red Sox have faced, Scott Kazmir and Joe Saunders, manager Terry Francona has opted to start Rocco Baldelli instead of J.D. Drew. The 14 Million Dollar question is why?
I can see once in a while, to get Rocco some at bats, that he’d replace Drew, Ellsbury, or even Ortiz against some LHP. But 2 LHPs in a row Drew sits for Baldelli?
J.D. Drew is a career .260 hitter versus LHP. Last year, he hit .284 versus lefties but in 2007 he hit .224 against southpaws. In his career versus Kazmir, he was 1-7 with a triple a walk and 3 strikeouts. I can see sitting him versus Kazmir, who is notoriously tough (career .212 BA against vs LH batters) on lefties. In his career versus Saunders, he is 1-5 with a double and a walk. Not a large sample against either pitcher, but Saunders is not tougher on lefties like Kazmir is.
If you compare Drew to Ortiz, Big Papi is a career .268 hitter versus LHP. Last year, though, he hit a paltry .221 against lefties, obviously his injured wrist played a factor in this. In 2007, Ortiz hit .308 versus LHP. In the years 2003 through 2006, Ortiz hit .216, .250, .302, and .278 against LHP.
Now, I’m not saying that Ortiz should sit instead of Drew against lefties, not at all. I’m just using Ortiz as a comparison, as their numbers versus lefties aren’t far apart. However, I would have to think that it is very rare that a team’s highest paid player becomes a platoon player. In Drew’s defense, I do not think he should be sitting versus lefties, however, if his at bat versus Brian Fuentes to end Sunday’s game is any indication, maybe Francona knows what he is doing.
It was nice to see the Red Sox and Angels come together in fellowship on this Easter Day:
Should make for an interesting series when the Sox return back to Anaheim in May. Hopefully, they won’t let as many opportunities to score slip away then, like they did this week. And, hopefully they’ll be able to slow down the Angels on the basepaths. It was nice to see Varitek throw out Figgins trying to steal second, though.
Now it is onto Oakland, before returning back to Fenway for the RED HOT Orioles. I think the Sox will take 2 of 3 from Oakland in this series, but I am not looking forward to those 10 PM start times. Oh well.
It’s only one game in the scheme of it all. However, it is always great to get out of the gate with a win. The best part of the day, was that Josh Beckett was DOMINANT! Will be nice to have the real Josh Beckett this season, provide he remains healthy. Nice looking line:
7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 10 Ks. All on only 93 pitches thrown.
Dustin Pedroia picked up right where he left off. A home run in his first AB. Kevin Youkilis with 2 hits. Everybody seeming to chip in today. Jason Varitek with a HR. Mike Lowell and RBI double. Jason Bay an RBI. JD Drew with an RBI as well and he didn’t leave the game with an injury which is always a plus.
The only real blemish on the day was Hideki Okijima’s performance. Remember two years ago, what happened to Okijima on Opening Day in KC. If the same patterns follows, we’ll be happy with him come August.
As for me, I was at the ballgame. It is always great to be at the park, especially on Opening Day. Even when it is a cold day. I didn’t see any of the pre-game festivities, as I was underneath the RF grandstands, selling programs. However, I did get to see a lot of the game, since the product I was selling during the game wasn’t a hot item to sell today.
Game two tomorrow night, should be another good one. Jon Lester against Scott Kazmir, two of the top lefties in MLB.
Let’s build a streak!