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Posts Tagged ‘Trever Miller’

While Theo is busy taking kudos in Chicago, we still don’t have any news on his compensation, but life goes on.  Eight members of the team filed for free agency; none of the filings are surprising: Conor Jackson, Trever Miller, Bedard, Drew, Wake, Tek, Papi, and Paps.  Okay, maybe I was surprised that Drew chose to file instead of retire.  But everyone knew the rest of them were going to be filing.

Obviously there’s been a lot of talk about whether to keep Papi and Paps on board.  The difficulty with Papi is that he’ll want more money for more years, although his recent performance, certainly in the last season, suggests that that’s warranted.  Paps wants more money.  Like, a lot more money.  You might say we can afford to lose him because we have Bard, but I have a feeling that you won’t know how valuable it was having Bard as a closer-esque setup man packing that one-two punch with Paps unless Paps were to leave and then you’d be fishing around for an eighth inning guy as good as all that.  Trust me, it wouldn’t be Jenks, folks.

As far as Wake and Tek go, we don’t have much to lose by keeping them.  Their market value is relatively low as it is; it’s not like they can leverage high demand to induce a bigger deal from us.  Tek’s powers of leadership are here with this team; it’s unclear how valuable he’d be in another clubhouse since that was always his main contributor anyway, especially in recent years when his plate production has markedly decreased, although it is worth noting that he seemed to share in Tito’s experience of having his leadership be less effective this past year.  Either that or he pulled back on his leadership.  Either way, the results were the results; how much that had to do with Tek is unclear.  Regarding Wake, he’s still an effective pitcher, more so in the bullpen now than as a starter; I guess age does eventually take its toll even on a knuckleballer.  So Wake will have to figure out if he’d be satisfied as a reliever.  Ben, like Theo, will be unlikely to dish out coin if he’s not absolutely sure that he’s paying for the player’s worth alone; if Ben is interested in retaining Wake as a reliever but Wake wants to start and demands a starter’s salary, that could potentially be a problem.

Speaking of Ben, apparently he graduated from Lebanon High School in 1992, so the school has reportedly posted a sign out front that says, “Congratulations Ben Cherington Class of ’92 Free Tickets?” Hey, it doesn’t hurt to ask.

Jackson, Miller, and Bedard were late-season playoff fixes that we obviously didn’t end up needing.  The decision of whether to retain them doesn’t strike me as epically impactful, although given the fact that we’re technically short a starter now, Bedard may make sense if there’s no one better out there.

We picked up Scutaro’s option, probably as insurance until Jose Iglesias is ready to permanently assume the starter’s role.  We declined options on Wheeler and Atchison.

Congratulations to Ellsbury, Gonzalez, and Pedroia on their Gold Gloves! And congratulations to Ellsbury, Gonzalez, and Papi on their Silver Sluggers! All very well deserved; I can’t think of anyone who deserved them more.  Finally, congratulations to Luis Tiant for landing on this year’s Hall of Fame ballot.  It’s about time!

Lackey had his Tommy John surgery on Tuesday.  Supposedly it went well.

This week, the managerial interviews began.  First up was Phillies hitting coach Pete Mackanin.  Then we had Brewers hitting coach Dale Sveum, our former third base coach.  We’ve got Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux and Cleveland bench coach Sandy Alomar, Jr.  Of those four, Mackanin and Maddux would obviously be preferable, which is why Theo is interviewing them also.

Add to our growing list of vacancies a strength and conditioning coach and an assistant athletic trainer.  Apparently we fired Dave Page and Greg Barajas.

Also worth noting is the fact that the Mets will construct a few walls in Citi Field for the explicit purpose of decreasing the size of the field.  Among those walls will be an eight-foot installment in front of the sixteen-foot Great Wall of Flushing, between which will be built a new section of seats a la the Green Monster.  As far as I’m concerned, this is one of the most blatant agenda-pushing moves I’ve ever seen.  So they constructed an enormous ballpark that is forcing well-paid power hitters, like David Wright and, oh, yeah, Jason Bay, to struggle.  Big deal.  You don’t see any other ballclub undergoing offseason construction to shrink the field size just to increase home run production to make more money.  That is ridiculous, and I’m surprised that it’s being allowed.  Maybe Bud Selig is considering it yet another step forward toward making baseball even more popular; we all know how much he praises the home run as a tool to accomplish that.  But still.  I can’t believe this is flying under the radar.

In other news, the Pats lost to the Steelers, 25-17.  Before the season started, I think we all picked that one as a possible loss.  At least the score was respectable.  The Bruins scored a ton of goals this week.  We beat the Sens, 5-3, and then we absolutely buried the Leafs, 7-0.  Tyler Seguin posted his first-ever NHL hat trick en route.

Boston Globe Staff/Barry Chin
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Yesterday afternoon was just the latest installment in what is shaping out to be an exceedingly mediocre and altogether disappointing September that will require mammoth play during these last two weeks to make up for it.  Seriously.

The latest includes Wake lasting only five innings and giving up six runs, four earned, on six hits.  For those two unearned runs, you can thank Salty for a passed ball in the second and Aviles and his throwing error in the fifth.  Wake walked one and struck out five on 103 pitches, sixty-five of which were strikes.  So basically he threw two more strikes than Lester did on Saturday, but Lester went seven innings.  Either way, both pitchers still lost.

The latest also included a scoreless sixth by Atchison, two runs given up by Andrew Miller, and a scoreless rest of the game by Albers and Trever Miller.

The latest included a two-run double by McDonald in the fourth and a three-run shot by Aviles in the seventh with two out on a changeup.  He put it in the Monster seats.

Ultimately, the latest boiled down to an 8-5 loss, the latest of way too many.  The standings are not in good shape.  We’re ahead of but too close to the Rays in the Wild Card standings for comfort.  Are you comfortable with a two-game lead? I’m not.  Not with the way we’ve been playing.  And if we hadn’t been playing the way we’ve been playing, our lead would be well above two games anyway.  It’s true that we’re currently playing without some of our key hitters; it seems like as soon as one guy gets back, another goes down.   But that’s not even the point.  We just need to get better.  We need to not do things like combine for two wild pitches, four passed balls, three field miscues, four steals, and two errors.  By the way, all of the passed balls and one of the wild pitches occurred during Wake’s watch.  Yes to the knuckleball movement; not-so-much to the run-scoring as a result.  The knuckleball has to be just right, not too flat or too sharp.  Even Aviles, who almost saved the day, made two throwing errors.

The latest is that we have a doubleheader with Baltimore today, and we need to sweep it.

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Honestly, I can’t even believe this.  This is so much like our opening of the season that it seriously scares me to watch us play these days.  Remember in April when we’d lose strings of games, then have a ridiculously good game, and then lose more strings of games? Yeah.  Sounds a little too familiar, doesn’t it.

In the latest frustration, we lost, 9-2.  It didn’t matter that another great play at the plate was made to get Johnny Damon.  Honestly it’s never good to lose but I don’t think it would be as bad if we lost to a team that wasn’t the Rays (or the Yankees, but in this case we played the Rays).  Kyle Weiland started and took the loss.  He only lasted three innings.  He gave up four runs on three hits, thanks in part to a three-run home run with two out in the third.  The other run was scored right before the home run as a result of an RBI single.  So all four runs were given up in the third.  And it all started in the worst possible way: a piece of bat from that single went through Scutaro’s legs, which distracted him from the ball.  Before that, Weiland had faced the minimum in the game’s first two frames.  He walked two and struck out one.  By all accounts, he ended up being horrendous.

Obviously the bullpen wasn’t much better.  Trever Miller pitched a scoreless forth despite inheriting two baserunners.  Atchison pitched a scoreless fifth.  Morales gave up two runs in the sixth thanks to a two-run home run.  Then Albers gave up three runs, two of which were the result of a two-run home run.  Then Andrew Miller and Bowden finished off the game.

The offensive report is clearly going to be short.  We had the bases loaded with one out in the third and scored once when Gonzalez grounded out.  We had runners at the corners with two out in the ninth, and a single by McDonald brought in our second and final run.  Other than those two innings, we either went down in order or something pretty close to it.  Papi and Scutaro with two hits each posted our only multi-hit games.

We have thirteen games left to play.  Beckett is starting the first of those today.  Let’s turn this around now.

Boston Globe Staff/John Tlumacki

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