Saturday, July 5, 2008

Floyd Strikes out the A's: Sox - Oakland Game 3

There’s was no better buzzkill for my excitement to see Gavin Floyd pitch than finding out that the Sox would have Toby Hall behind home plate. Apparently, the jinx is wearing off and despite having the worst catcher in the history, the Sox bring in another win and save face in the third game of the four in their home series against Oakland Athletics with a final score of 6-1.

Pitching tonight was 25-year-old prodigy Gavin Floyd. Maybe I give the boy too much credit, but I’m sure everyone agrees with me when I say that he had a great outing tonight. And unlike some of our older gentlemen pitchers, the boy can get in the game. He caught a straight shot for a great double play, adding to his effort of 6 strikeouts, and no earned runs. As a response to Hawk’s comment (No, not the one about loving Judge Judy…) about Gavin Floyd pitching as well as Vazquez, well, let’s not bestow such an “honor” on him. We don’t want to jinx him. To finish the game, Thorton and Linebrink were brought in. I’ll save my complaints about Linebrink for another time. You can’t always have perfect pitching.

Some excellent offensive moments came from Swish’s home run (Who is this guy? And what has he done to easy-out Nick? More on this topic Monday.), Anderson’s 2-run homer, Cabrera’s 2-RBI double, and Alexei’s solo home run. In terms of offense, I will say that the pressure that the managers are putting on Anderson and Wise (Letting them know they need to fight for their jobs. And speaking of, how about voicing your opinion on this matter in the poll? ) seems to be working. Both men are making great showings whenever they get the chance to play. O.C.’s been struggling a bit lately (Or, as my notes say, “What’s going on in that head of yours, little buddy?”), but seemed to have found his stride again.

But there are still parts of the offense that are anything but brilliant. When you have a team of sluggers, you’re taking a risk. But when you take this risk, wouldn’t you expect it to pay off? While today happened to be better than the last two games, there were still traces of the offensive struggles of the previous days. Today, Crede, Dye, Hall, Thome, and Quentin all fell short of the mark.

TCQ (That's THE Carlos Quentin) got a double, but the only way I can explain it is that he tripped and fell into it. Lately, he’s been an offensive mess. Like Crede, the only thing constant for Carlos is the rate at which his average is declining. (Ouch! It doesn't mean that I don't love them!) Thome is excused today because he’s been hitting well in the past few games, Dye has also been hot enough that he shouldn’t be held responsible for having an off day when everyone else had his back, and I don’t expect much from Hall anyway (He got on base on an error today. I think no one was more shocked than he.). And then there’s Joe. To his credit, he’s convinced me that he’s getting back on track. If you check out his hitting chart, he has a clear pattern. All his home runs and the majority of his doubles have been happening in left field. Sure, this might mean he doesn’t have range OR that he has a formula that works, and from what I saw today, he’s been working on aiming. Joe, are you reading this right now?

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