Red Sox Downtime...Matsuzaka Postseason Rotation Status...Minnesota/Detroit Playoff Game Today
"The waiting is the hardest part," Tom Petty wrote, played and sang oh so many years ago and that still rings true. The Boston Red Sox, American League Wild Card winners, jetted to California to begin the preparations for their Thursday (?) game one contest against the Anaheim California Los Angeles Angels. Boston manager Terry Francona has named his three starters and Daisuke Matsuzaka, who was brilliant in his last three September starts, was not among them. Leading off the series will be the ace of the team (YES, he IS the ace), Jon Lester. He'll be followed by Josh Beckett in the two slot and Clay Buchholz, who was shaky the last half of September, VERY shaky. at number three. Why the Lester/Beckett flip-flop? Let's see what the skipper has to say...
“What it really came down to is the fact that when you look at how our rotation was set up - and Beckett knows we feel this way - because for us to get where we want to go we’re going to have to lean on both of them,’’ manager Terry Francona said
Here's Josh being diplomatic as always. He is very aware of what is best for his team...
“I want to do whatever helps us win,’’ Beckett said after his start Saturday. “That’s the key to the whole postseason is to put yourself in the best possible position to win, whether it be a five-game series or seven-game series. We’ve discussed everything, and I’m OK with whatever they decide to do. That’s Tito's job. I’m glad I don’t have that job.’’
Lester/Beckett, Beckett/Lester, I could give a sh*t as long as both are our games one and two starters. What puzzles me is the selection of Clay Buchholz over Daisuke Matsuzaka. The Halos will probably pick this ALDS series to begin on Thursday. What that means is that a four man rotation might not be needed if Tito wants Lester to come back on short rest for game four. Lester could do that, Beckett probably could not. That was part of Francona's thinking process. I'm sure Daisuke will be the first guy out of the 'pen if Clay falters in any way, or if ANY starter is yanked early. Let's just hope that won't happen. PERIOD.
Don't forget that there is a "for all the marbles" game today at 5pm EDT at the Ugly Minnesota Metrodome. My girlfriend Nadia is from there and I'll STILL call it that. But seriously, it should be a great contest that will be televised on TBS and, better yet, TBS HD. Enjoy...when I think of a one game tiebreaker, I shudder as I think of 1978. More need not be said.
I'll read and respond to any and all of your comments on anything and I'll be back with more pre-series comings and goings first thing in the morning. Thanks for stopping in and as always, BE WELL.