Thursday, October 3, 2013

Day 186: ALDS: Red Sox - Rays Preview

It's not the matchup I had hoped for, but I guess it'll do. I hoped it would be Terry Francona and the Indians visiting Fenway Park, but alas... we're stuck with the dreaded Tampa Bay Rays. Those pesky Rays. Don't we see these guys enough over the course of a season? Well... here we go again. Game one is Friday at 3pm.

The Sox and Rays faced off 19 times (as is usual with a division rival) and walked away with 12 hard fought wins. Of those 12 wins, half were decided in the ninth inning or later and the Red Sox only outscored the Rays by 14 runs over those 19 games. This series is going to be tight. And nerve wracking, I'm sure. What makes this ALDS even more frightening is what the Rays have done to get here. They won 10 of their last 12 including three straight must-win games.

These teams are pretty evenly matched, but the Rays have a superior pitching staff who collectively had a 3.54 ERA against the Red Sox this season. Last year's Cy Young winner, David Price, didn't have a stellar year, going 10-8, but he certainly had Boston's number. He beat them twice in a span of five days back in July. Matt Moore went 17-4 and he's scheduled to pitch game one. At least they won't see Price twice.

If you're looking at offensive numbers, the Red Sox have a pretty lopsided advantage here. Actually, they have a pretty big advantage over everyone—the Sox led the majors in runs scored with 853—an average of over five runs per game. They were second in hits, first in RBIs, second in team average and first in OBP, slugging and OPS. And their bench guys are amazing. Let's just hope the bats don't fail us now!

The first three games will look a little something like this:

Game 1: Fenway Park, Friday, October 4th @ 3:00pm
Jon Lester (15-8) vs. Matt Moore (17-4)

Game 2: Fenway Park, Saturday, October 5th @ 5:30pm
John Lackey (10-13) vs. TBD

Game 3: Tropicana Field, Monday, October 7th @ TBD
Clay Buchholz (12-1) vs. TBD

I'm going to be scratching and clawing for TV time this weekend since I'll be in the Poconos for a wedding. Maybe it's better that I don't watch... I'm nervous. It's been a while since I've experienced the post season jitters. I can't concentrate.


  1. good prevu. i have my 3 villians to root against on the 'rays' ( whose logo should be sunglasses!)
    1- wolverine 2- mister crooked hat closer and last but not least the rightfielder 'meat ' look alike ,(character from bull durham played by tim robbins)

    1. I'm starting to feel like I hate the Rays as much as I hate the Yankees.