May 14, 2006


Everyone lagging in AL West (Larry Stone, 5/14/06, Seattle Times)

On two things, all four teams in the American League West would agree:

One, they sure could use another productive bat or three (that goes even for the Texas Rangers, who aren't raking with the reckless abandon one would expect from a club that plays at a hitter's paradise like Ameriquest).

And, especially, two: Thank goodness everyone else is struggling, too.

None of the quartet has taken off and taken control of the division, but none has been buried, either. And the candidates for burial are four-fold: Heading into Friday's play, the last-place Mariners would have been a nearly hopeless 9-½ games out of first place if they were in the Central Division with the White Sox — and first-place Texas, at one game over .500, would have been six games out.

As it was, however, just 3-½ games separated top from bottom, leaving the whole bedraggled gang with illusions (or perhaps delusions) of running off the sort of surge that propelled the San Diego Padres from the dregs to the top in their kindred cauldron of the commonplace, the National League West.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 14, 2006 11:37 AM

Nice comment:

NYY team ERA: 3.74 (3rd in MLB)
Red Sox team ERA: 4.56 (18th in MLB)

Posted by: Brandon at May 14, 2006 1:01 PM

Yes. Last I heard the Mariners were just behind the Damnyankees on that list. It's the hitting that's really terrible around here. The best example was Wednesday's game against the Tampa Bay Bottom Feeders where Jamie Moyer gave up the only run of the game on a balk when he stumbled on the pitching rubber.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at May 14, 2006 1:56 PM


Exactly--the Yanks have been facing those wretched offenses on the Coast.

Posted by: oj at May 14, 2006 2:05 PM

There's something to what oj says.

The Red Sox have so far played 19 of their 35 games against the Indians, Blue Jays, Yankees, and Rangers -- the top four hitting teams in the majors. They're 12-4 in the other games giving up 46 runs or 2.87 runs per game. Given that many of their pitchers are pitching below career norms, and they have good arms in AAA, it's likely the Sox pitching will improve as the season progresses.

The Yanks by contrast have played 5 against Tampa Bay (last in the league in hitting, scored 13 against NYY), 5 against Oakland (next to last, scored 18 against NYY), 3 against the Angels (6th worst, scored 8 against NYY), and 3 against the Royals (7th worst, scored 15 against NYY). In those 16 games, the Yankees gave up 54 runs, or 3.375 per game.

In short, the Yankees have given up 0.5 more runs per game against the bottom 7 teams in hitting than the Red Sox have given up against the bottom 26.

If you had to project forward, based on career records and this year's performance so far, you'd have to project the Red Sox ending up with fewer runs allowed than the Yankees.

Posted by: pj at May 14, 2006 3:04 PM

The biggest difference is that the Sawx pitchers have to face the Yanks potent offense for 19 games, while the Yanks face the Sawx anemic offense in those same 19 games.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 14, 2006 3:48 PM

Don't for get to include those 19 games botht he DamnYankees and the BadSawx get to play against the Tampa Bay Bottom Feeders. That's almost as many games as they get to play against the entire AL West.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at May 14, 2006 4:10 PM

Oh, and lets compare the two staffs against the Blue Jays, a good hitting team whom the Yanks have played 5x, 3-2 record, and the Red Sawx have played 8x (dismal 3-5 record): Yanks have a 5.4 era vs the Jays, and the sawx are sporting a nify 6.3 era.

How bout another good hitting team:

The Yanks who swept the Rangers in Texas, gave up 4.3 runs per game in 3 games. The Sawx? 5 runs per game in 4 games.

You guys can keep denying it, but the Yanks pitching is far superior to the Sawx. The bottom two of your rotation is absolutely dreadful.

(And that's with Torre insisting on using Sturtze and Small out of the pen. The one is gone as of yesterday. And the other won't be long behind.)

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 14, 2006 4:17 PM

Jim - A .750 win percentage against the Yanks will make up for a few off games against the Jays and Rangers.

I'm interested to hear that the hopes of Yankees fans rest on getting rid of pitchers. If you keep dropping outfielders and pitchers at this rate, you'll be world champions by June.

Posted by: pj at May 14, 2006 4:28 PM

Tampa has little pitching but, when healthy, a terrific offense.

Posted by: oj at May 14, 2006 6:59 PM

At this rate Clemens is going to wind up with $30 million of Steinbrenner's loose change, plus maybe a kidney. Not bad for a half-season's work.

Posted by: joe shropshire at May 14, 2006 7:14 PM

It's mid-May and the Tigers are above .600!

Posted by: Dave W at May 15, 2006 11:11 AM