Sunday, September 30, 2007

Baseball playoffs

I'm not a fan of the playoff schedule, which keeps getting more and more drawn out to satisfy the demands of television. The Sox, for instance, play on October 3, 5, 7, 8, and 10. Five games in eight days? This is very different than the regular season. For instance, one gets to the playoffs by having a deep bullpen, but that's deemphasized with this schedule.

But I'd rather be playing in a crummy postseason schedule than not. You only need three starters in the Division Series, and the Sox will probably go with Beckett, then Schilling, then Matsuzaka. This would put Schilling in Game 5, and he's been comfortable in big games in the past. I suppose the Angels will go with Lackey, Escobar, and Jered Weaver.

As a sidenote, we all can agree to support the Indians. Go Tribe!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Changed my mind again

Now I'd vote

1. Sabathia
2. John Lackey
3. Carmona
4. Beckett

Lackey is slightly better than Carmona in every way. Carmona beats Beckett based on ERA, innings, complete games, and starts.

Sabathia edges Lackey due to more innings, completely games, and strikeouts. But those two are practically even.

And yes, Beckett went from #1 to #4 on my ballot in three days.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Cy Young Take Two

As Sox fans know, it's never too late to blow a lead. Turns out there was still time for Beckett to change my mind.

With his performance tonight, I think Beckett should have lost the Cy Young to Fausto Carmona, who will lead the league in ERA, and have two more shutouts, one more complete game, and more innings than Beckett. Does that make up for one less victory? Yes, I think it does.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Cy Young

So who wins the Cy Young awards?

In the National League, I'll go way out on a limb and say it's going to be Peavy. When the guy with the lowest ERA also has the most wins, he's tough to beat. When he also has the most strikeouts, he should get every #1 vote.

The American League is trickier. Josh (a) Beckett has the most wins, but no shutouts and just one complete game. C.C. Sabathia has the most innings, four complete games, and a great run down the stretch; Fausto Carmona (who?), has the best ERA and 19 wins; John Lackey has 18 wins so far and two shutouts. Roy Halliday is a horse (7 complete games) but doesn't have the ERA this year. Dan Haren has the ERA and the innings, but there's a big difference between 15 wins and 20 wins.

I go with Beckett, but I wouldn't argue with someone voting for Sabathia.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Pennant races

In baseball, I am a traditionalist. I'm opposed to both inter-league play and the wild card.

One justification for the three division setup is that it prolongs the pennant races.

Well, sometimes. But not always. For instance, this year the playoff teams in the American League have been known for a week: Sox, Yankees, Tribe, and Angels. Whether the Sox or Yankees win the AL East isn't really important.

However, consider the case if the American League still had just two divisions. As of today, the Tribe would be in first place, half a game ahead of the Sox, with the Yankees charging hard two games back. It would be a great race.

I recognize that some years the new format is good for creating excitement, but it's worth noting that some years the regular season is cheapened. That's the case this year.

Friday, September 21, 2007


Let me get this straight, the guy who spent $750,000 on Bonds' record breaking home run ball is going to let people vote on what he should do with it?

I'm with Barry: The guy is an idiot.

My first thought was that this guy was a real jerk, because if you're going to spend $750,000, there are plenty of good ways to spend it.

But it turns out that he's already familiar with philanthropy. This whole auction is just all for publicity.

For what it's worth, I voted to put the ball in the Hall of Fame. Like him or hate him, Bonds is important to baseball history.

Saturday, September 15, 2007


Ok, I was somewhat traumatized by Michigan football these last couple of weeks. It's taken me some time to adjust my expectations, because I really thought we were going to be good.

We're not good. But we're sure not as bad as Notre Dame either. They are atrocious. They really ought to try recruiting some offensive linemen.