Friday, October 12, 2007

The Lesser of Two Evils? (ALCS preview)

This is one of those series where you'd rather not be a Yankee fan. You don't want Boston to win, plain and simple, but do don't really want Cleveland to be the ones to beat Boston...


If Boston wants to win this series, they're going to have to find a way to beat CC Sabathia or Fausto Carmona. Am I the only one that thinks of 'Faustian tragedy' when I see that guy's name?

Right then. If Cleveland wants to win, they need to beat Beckett or Schilling in Fenway.

If the series just came down to that, I'd give Cleveland the edge in a heartbeat, but the problem is, it's not a best-of-three series.

Boston's got the scarier guys in the lineup, but Cleveland's offense is much more balanced. Grady Sizemore and Asdrubel Cabrera have some serious; Travis Hafner can hit it out in a snap.

[EDIT}: According to some I've been talking to, such as Brent of the MVN network, I've got this wrong, and Boston has the more balanced line up. I've been going on my general impression--Boston's line up seems top-heavy to me, while Cleveland does not--but I've been wrong before.

We'll see what happens here.

Bullpen-wise, Boston's got the better closer, but Cleveland can get by on set up men alone.

So, players to watch: CC Sabathia, Fausto Carmona, Rafaels (2), Travis Hafner, Grady Sizemore, David Ortiz, Manny Ramirez, Josh Beckett, Hideki Okajima, Daisuke Matsuzaka, and, hate it or not, Curt Schilling.

As for the prediction...

This is going to be a good series. Boston's probably going to win at least one at Fenway and lose at least one at the Jake, so that's six games right there.

On the whole, I think Cleveland's got the edge, unless Schilling and Dice-K have some serious game. It's not just the pitching though; Cleveland's offense is better balanced, and they are still the more underrated team.

Cleveland in seven.

(Watch it be Boston in four...)


  1. Cleveland's offense is better balanced, and they are still the more underrated team.

    How are they more balanced? And how will that help them? You're just throwing cliches out there. If you're going to break down the game, break it down.

    Also, being underrated doesn't help them. Not sure why you threw that in.

    Bullpen-wise, Boston's got the better closer, but Cleveland can get by on set up men alone.

    Doesn't matter. Cleveland's going to use their closer, just like they did in game 4 against the yankees. So saying they can get by on set up men alone is pointless. They won't do it.

  2. O.k. I just realized you didn't even know what a balk was. Didn't realize you were new to baseball. It all makes sense now. Sorry.

  3. Yes, Cleveland's gonna use its closer, but when you have both Perez and Betancourt as your set-up men... and even Fultz (2.92 ERA), plus having two Cy Young candidates in your starting rotation, Cleveland easily has the pitching advantage.

    You can say what you want about Borowski, but this isn't April. Wedge isn't an idiot. Having three very capable bullpen arms will give Cleveland that advantage.

    Oh, btw, "getting by on set-up men"?

    Game 1: Wedge closed the game with Betancourt

    Game 2: Wedge closed the game with Perez

    It's not as ridiculous of a statement as you may think it was. He closed two of the four games with his set-up guys. You don't think Wedge knows that Borowski isn't exactly Mo on the mound? He's got better relievers, he knows that and has used them to close the game out.

  4. I'd rather Cleveland wins because I don't want a Red Sox manager managing the All Star Game in Yankee Stadium.

    Looking at the line-ups, they are very close. The Sox have some big name talent that has come up small, namely Crisp, Drew and Lugo. On paper the edge may go to Boston, but that's why the games are played.

    Boston's rotation is deeper imo (3 very good pitchers vs 2 for the Tribe) and I like Papelbon and Okajima over the Borowski and the Indians set up guys.

    And to Brent, game one was a blowout and game 2 was a tie game. Wedge used Borowski in the only save situation in the series vs the the Yankees and I see no reason why he'll change now. I'm rootng hard for Cleveland, but I think it'll be Red Sox in 6.

  5. For anyone who cares, the Lohudblogs are still down but PeteAbe is back up at Blogger temporarily. This link should take you to his blog:

  6. Josh--Thank you so much for the link!

  7. Rebecca, No problem. I know you are one of Pete's regular blog commenters, as am I (as YankeeJosh). If you're anything like me, you've been going nuts without his blog. I stumbled into the link from The Journal News main page and had to share.

    Though PeteAbe's blog being down has caused me to come here more often. LOL Guess it's good for business but you've created a great place for baseball talk and I appreciate it.

  8. Sox have rbis from 4 different guys.

    Imagine if they had a "balanced" lineup!