Friday, July 23, 2010

John Lackey: Finally Earned His First Paycheck

Truth be told, I don't care that Lackey lost the no-hitter yesterday. Sure, maybe that makes me petty but I don't care. I didn't want Lackey and I haven't enjoyed watching him this season. Am I happy when he does well? Absolutely. But it's for the sake of the team, not for him. If he had gotten the no-no, I wouldn't have been angry, but... yeah. I'll just say I appreciate that old friend Josh Bard is the one who broke up the no-no. I didn't approve of the way our front office continuously brought him back and got rid of him. It was small revenge, sure, but he deserved it.

However, if we had lost this game, I would have been angry. I would have been very angry. Not that I stayed up for it. I actually had every intention of staying up for the game, but there was a pitching change in the 8th, and I thought I could just rest my eyes until they came back from commercials, and then I woke up when my alarm clock went off this morning. I couldn't have stayed up until 2 AM even if I wanted to, though.

Manny Delcarmen confuses me. What happened? On June 1st, he was sporting a 1.73 ERA and looking like the best thing to happen to the bullpen since pirate music (slight exaggeration, of course). He was our most reliable arm all through May, and most of June. Then what? He got hurt? Is that really it? Not for nothing, but he was on the disabled list and made rehab starts to take care of his forearm strain or whatever the problem was. June 3rd, the ERA started climbing. Two runs that night on two HR's to Oakland, and one run on June 6th brought it up to 2.67. After that, he enjoyed 5 1/3 IP over 6 appearances of scoreless baseball. Then in his next three appearances, he just completely and utterly fell apart, allowing nine runs on nine hits and two walks in one inning over three appearances. Two of those appearances (June 24 @ Colorado, and June 30th vs Tampa), he failed to record a single out, and then he was DL'ed. His first two outings back, he was great, allowing no hits and no runs in 2 1/3rd innings. Last night? Back to falling apart. 4 Runs on 2 hits in no innings. What's the problem? I don't know enough about pitching mechanics to know if he's doing something differently. When he's good, he's really good, but when he's bad, he is the destroyer of games. How do you pitch 1 1/3rd innings of perfect baseball one night and come back two days later looking like Eric Gagne? It doesn't make sense!

I won't even discuss Papelbon. My patience for him has slowly been getting shorter and shorter since 2008. Someone who bitches about money as much as he does needs to be able to back up his demands in performance. I also don't need to comment about our run prevention defense, considering the run preventors are mostly on the DL.

Wait. I will comment. Our defense is utter bullshit at times. To pick on Beltre for no reason, 15 errors? Seriously, my idea to call him Belteria a few months ago shouldn't have been this accurate. This was the improved defense we were supposed to get? REALLY? You honestly think Mike Lowell would have had 15 errors? The answer is no. Bill Hall has 8 errors. Eight. I know he's a backup, but eight? Marco Scutaro has TWELVE! Our run prevention infield has nore errors than I care to count. They're sloppy. It makes me angry. They're all lucky that they won last night, because that game certainly wasn't won on talent.

The last thing I can say is... it's nice to see them pull victory from the cold hands of ugly defeat. I just wish they wouldn't pull defeat from the warm, loving hands of victory so often. And good job, Patterson. You are the winner of the night.

On a side note, I did not realize that Nava had been optioned back to Pawtucket until I read an article about Mike Lowell helping the PawSox win their game last night. This means two things that I approve of: Mikey is getting close to rejoining the Sox (though I don't dare to speculate for how long), and that Wolverine is back in action. I've missed both of these individuals.

You know what else is going to happen tonight that will also win my approval? The return of Josh Beckett. I will try not to place too many high expectations on Joshua, since he's been crap all year and hasn't won a game since April 10th. But I am happy he's coming back. I've missed him, is all.

And I will stay up for the entire game.

Happy Friday, everyone.

No comments: