74 thoughts on “Talkin’ Baseball: The playoffs edition.

  1. It’s funny, for a while I kept hoping Kazmir would implode to lessen the blow of the trade, but at this point I’m rooting for him to do well…perhaps in my subconscious I am just hoping we are letting him get some seasoning in FL before he returns home to NY!

  2. Whats amazing to me is how many pitchers have had neg. contact with Peterson and he’s only been gone 6 mo. – the guy was called the guru just a year ago now they all seem to be coming out of the woodwork…Kazmir reminded me of the peterson comments about Zambrano..

  3. Jd- when Jerry said we need players to take team at bats and not individual stats – who was he referring to I’d say Reyes but who else

  4. Did you guys hear about Charlie Manuel’s mom? For some reason, i don’t want the phillies to lose as bad as i did before this. :o

  5. Red Sox up 2-0 in the first. A walk and two hits after two quick outs.

    Roger Clemens used to say that rallies start with two outs. Bummer the Mets hitters didn’t get that memo.

  6. How does Crawford get picked off with 2 outs like that? 2 outs you stick to the bag to keep a rally going.

  7. Sam(7):

    To quote Homer Simpson: “Doh!”

    Crawford wasn’t even very far off the bag; he was looking toward the outfield. Sheesh.

  8. The Red Sox look like the late 90’s Yankees to me. I like the Sox team but they have that look that they KNOW they are going to win every playoff game they play.

    I have been flipping back between the great CFB games today and the LCS but I am amazed at how successful Dustin Pedroia is. I can’t even call him a gritty player, because gritty players don’t threaten to win MVPs…

  9. Hi guys … just got back home. Had to go the Apple store to get some work done on the computers. My post earlier was done on a friend’s cell phone. Nice to see the Rays back in this.-JD

  10. ed (4): Catching up. Yes, I think he was talking about Reyes, but that was inclusive of everybody. The Mets were horrible with RISP, and that includes the whole roster.-JD

  11. Bryan (11): That’s a great comparison. It’s even more pronounced with Manny gone.-JD

  12. Sam G.: Really good game. These are two gritty teams. The Red Sox are more tolerable without Manny and Schilling. Their fans, of course, like Yankee fans, at times can be untolerable.-JD

  13. Darling was talking about the Mets’ bullpen and the loss of Wagner. About how without the closer the roles change. While all of that is true, and the closer situation was a mess after he left, it must be acknowledged that the bridge to Wagner was awful before his injury.-JD

  14. Nice idea by Pena on the bunt. Delgado did that once this year. I’m convinced if Delgado worked on his bunting, that against the shift he could get enough hits to lift his average to close to .300, which would eliminate the shift. Just a thought.-JD

  15. It’s true about the bridge to Wagner being awful, but I still think they manage a couple more wins in September if he doesn’t go down. Afterall, without him, that awful bridge had to be extended out further yet still only led the Mets to a giant hole. If you have Wagner, you can better utilize the reliable err occasionally trustworthy types more effectively.

  16. TJ (20): No arguments there. I’m just saying it’s too convenient to blame the pen’s problems on losing Wagner. Don’t forget, he blew seven saves by himself.-JD

  17. Is there any greater example of teamwork in action in sports than the perfectly executed double-play?-JD

  18. Wheeler needs to take a breath and get his head back in the game. He’s got “that look” right now.

  19. Sam G.: He does. Expressions from the crowd are like they’ve already accepted the worst.-JD

  20. It seems like the Red Sox play more close playoff games than any team I’ve ever seen. Maybe that is part of the reason they have that attitude where they know they’ll win (even when they don’t — if that makes sense)…

    It should be interesting to see how the Rays’ young players react after losing the lead late…

  21. Oh no doubt he was shakey himself. I do think they could have limped into the playoffs had they had him however. I doubt they would have made it far in that case anyway. But I do think they could have limped into the playoffs.

    Frankly the only guy I liked out of the pen in the end was Joe Smith. Maybe Feliciano for lefties. Though I am somewhat curious if Duaner can have a better season next year. Perhaps he had just hit a wall after having not pitched in so long prior to this year? Beyond that I’d give Ayala and Stokes a look and if Heilman cannot be dealt I would hope that injuries harmed him more than he cared to admit.

  22. Bryan (25): And, they have no problems on the road, either. Your earlier comment comparing them to the Yankees is so accurate. I covered those Yankee teams and see it. Solid pitching. Strong bullpen. A propensity for winning games in unusual ways. Timely hitting. The Yankees didn’t have a basher like Ortiz, but both had exceptional players who performed in the clutch.-JD

  23. TJ (26): Smith was the best reliever in September. … Personally, I think they rushed Sanchez. I lost confidence in Sanchez, but wonder if he eases himself into 2009 if he might be better. … Heilman was injured, and it did hurt his performance.-JD

  24. I think the Red Sox front office gets it too. It’s hard to fault the Yankees front office given their playoff streak until this year, but I just feel that with the way the Sox supplement their team with young, homegrown talent (Pedroia, Youkilis, Lowrie, Masterson, etc..) will make them more sustainable than what the Yankees did going the free agency route to fill all their needs.

    While the Yankees still obviously were more than competitive post-2000, I just didn’t see the type of supplemental players you need to win the biggest games like the Red Sox have.

  25. He had to have been. As up and down as Aaron has been at times, he has too much talent to be that consistently bad. It was big of him to try to claim the injury wasn’t the problem, but it must have been. I’d be okay if they moved him in the right deal but perhaps they shouldn’t. A healthy, productive Heilman is a bullpen upgrade that doesn’t cost a thing.

  26. I’m in graduate school at UC-Davis but living in the Bay Area right outside of San Francisco.

    Of course the only Mets game I was able to get out to here this past year was the day after the ESPN night game/flight to the west that Ollie got absolutely shelled in…

  27. Bryan (30): Although they remained competitive, I thought a defining moment in the change of attitude was the signing of Giambi at the expense of Tino Martinez. I was never a big Tino fan personally, but admit he was vital to their success. Giambi, then Sheffield, and Randy Johnson, and Matsui, was a direction to go with the stars, and that wasn’t their essence.-JD

  28. Bryan (32): Speaking of UC-Davis, I covered the Ken O’Brien Jets. He went there, right?-JD

  29. TJ (31): You’re right. Part of the evaluation process is whether the Mets believe Heilman’s confidence was damaged beyond repair.-JD

  30. Sam G.: That he did. It was as if he shifted to a higher gear after the Crisp double.-JD

  31. That Crisp double was the weirdest double I’ve seen. It just wrapped Upton up. It didn’t look like he lost it just ate hime up.

  32. After this game some of you guys on the Left Coast will still have time to go out for beer. But, it’s late here. Why can’t MLB start these things just a bit earlier? I know the answer, but I like to bitch anyway.-JD

  33. Sam G.: It looked as if he turned the wrong way. Had he turned toward left field maybe he could have run that down.-JD

  34. Not only are the late start times awful for fans on the wrong coast, they’re also bad for those who use public transportation to go to the games. I’m in Jersey and it simply makes more sense for me to take trains into the city. However, the last train back is a little after midnight. Back in ’06 I very barely made it back to Penn Station in time after dealing with fan gridlock just to even get to the LIRR.

  35. TJ (41): When I covered the Yankees there were times I’d take the train during day games. No way at night.-JD

  36. With Shea coming down I may consider getting used to driving to games once they’ve added the additional parking spaces.

  37. Bryan (32):

    Does Davis still have the toad tunnels?

    I’m familiar w/the campus. I had a friend in grad school there when I was living in San Fran (1999-2000). It was HOT in the summer. Very pretty, though. :)

  38. That Seger guy is very distracting… his snazzy and psychodelic suites as well as that horrible toupé, my goodness.

  39. JD (39):

    You’re right: Us Left-Coasters will be able to go out for a beer or five after the game. Heck, I’m prepped to meet up w/some friends for pool at 11:00.

    It took me awhile to get used to the Sunday football routine when I moved to the West Coast. I was accustomed to having a certain morning routine before settling in to watch the games. Once I heard the “60 Minutes” tick, tick, tick after the 4:00 game ended, I knew it was time to start winding-down and preparing for the work week. On the Left Coast, however, I still have sunlight (and much of the day) remaining when the last game ends.

    That said, it’s ridiculous that an East Coast playoff game is still in action at 1:00 AM EST.

  40. Patrick (48): It is shameful, actually. There’s a whole generation of kids who don’t get to see history being made. … BTW: Sunday football on the Left Coast is best. You’ve got your two games and part of the day left. … Patrick, have one for me.-JD

  41. Did you see that kid with the Red Sox cap sleeping? Somebody is going to catch hell for that shot.-JD

  42. ALthough I will say I wish the games would end earlier, i hate the whole “its for the kids!” thing.
    As a kid, I kinda sorta liked baseball and even if the games start at 4, I wasn’t going to watch all of it anyway.

    And besides most games are supposed to take about 3 hours on average with alot ending in a 2 hour and a half frame. Its all the walks and pitching changes that make it so long.
    Are they supposed to predict extra innings and all that?
    Lets say they started it at 7pm instead, itd STILL be midnight on the west coast.

  43. Honestly, I don’t know much about the UC-Davis campus or history. I work all day and get to campus for class at like 6:00pm and go right to the Business building…

    I’m still getting used to the West Coast here. Actually, I’m moving back east after I get my MBA. I like the timing for these late postseason games, but I miss half of every Mets game or more working until 5pm.

    It is nice being able to take in the game and then still go to the bars with plenty of time left, though.

  44. This game started at 8:08 p.m. … Saturday night, no reason they couldn’t have started this at 7 p.m. Had they done that people would be talking about history. Now, there’s a lot of people wishing this damn thing would end soon. … Another walk or two, and it will.-JD

  45. Its not what time the game begins/ends its how long it is and you can’t plan that. If I’m anywhere for 5 hours I’m tired as hell, I don’t care what it is.

  46. regaridng my comment 51, I wanna correct myself.
    *Lets say they started it at 7pm instead, itd STILL be midnight on the east coast.

  47. How about this John, trust me when I say this, kids don’t care THAT much. It’s only been a couple of years since I was a legit kid. I grew up with this sorta thing.
    We don’t really care to watch the whole thing…

  48. Benny (51): It’s not just for the kids. My dad is 83 and a shut-in. He loves watching baseball. There’s thousands like him. Most of those people went to bed hours ago. It’s not just the younger generation MLB is dismissing, but an older generation that always supported the game. Something isn’t right, and I don’t want to hear how Selig is such a traditionalist with the timing of some of these games. … There’s no reason some of these playoff games can’t be during the day. Are you telling me there wouldn’t have been people watching baseball today instead of college football?-JD

  49. Obviously, there’s a longer leash to argue during the playoffs. As it should be.-JD

  50. JD (49):

    You’re right — it is shameful. I bet most young kids on both coasts are either in bed or struggling to stay awake right now.

  51. This might be the series for the Rays. Need to get this run in to believe they have a chance to win this series.

  52. John, regarding comment 58, alright, good point. But I still don’t see how you can fault the sport for the length of games, thats not something you can control.

  53. Benny (64): Not complaining about the length of the game. Just the start time. You’re right. An awesome game.-JD

  54. Benny (67): What a dumb question. “What does this win mean to this franchise?” I dunno. What do you think?-JD

  55. Oh and last comment of the night. I feel offended of the broadcast pretending the Rays and Longoria are the only guys to use the occular pitching machine with the tennis balls and the numbers at 100 mph.
    That’s Carlos Beltran’s machine!!! He introduced it to the world and its even in his contract!

  56. Well, that’s the ball game, folks.

    I’m a bit disconcerted that I was hoping the game would end soon simply so that I could get on w/my night. This probably buttresses JD’s point about the late starting time especially since it was a really good game.

  57. Benny (70): I did a story on that a couple of years ago. TBS obviously didn’t do its homework.-JD

  58. All you guys on the West Coast heading out … have one for me. Talk with you guys tomorrow. … Maybe we can talk some football before the playoff game. Good night all.-JD