Thursday, October 31, 2013

Excerpt: "Our New Overlords"

"I don't believe the differences between 2011 and 2012 and 2013 were about soft factors. I believe it was those five guys being more healthy and effective this year, collectively, than they were in the previous season and the last month of '11. Those five were among the Sox' top nine players in the regular season, and four were among the team's top five. The Red Sox' three best players in the postseason were Ortiz, Lester and Ellsbury. Remember that 2011 collapse? Lester had a 5.40 ERA and Buchholz didn't pitch. In 2012, Ortiz played 90 games and Ellsbury played 74. In 2013, those numbers were 137 and 134. Pedroia played 19 more games than he did last year. Lester and Buchholz combined to be high-ERA innings munchers in 2012; this year, they had a 2.98 ERA in 49 starts. (Farrell may deserve some credit here, as the two pitchers show a with-Farrell/without-Farrell split.) Heck, John Lackey was ineffective for Francona, unavailable to Valentine and had a 3.52 ERA in 29 starts under Farrell."