At least the Sox didn't pick up their 10th 5+ run loss of the season. Hooray, late inning runs!
What will you remember most about the Jerry Owens Era?
Jerry Owens now has four hits since his call-up. Surprisingly, two of them were for extra-bases; one was a shot just inside the left field line with the other just inside the right field line. The two singles didn't leave the infield, and would have been routine plays if not for Owens' speed or Derek Jeter's limited range. I don't know if I've even seen him make contact on a breaking pitch yet. He wouldn't get 5 consecutive starts on any other team in baseball, yet on a team which includes Alex Cintron as a key backup plus Joe Crede and Juan Uribe as regulars he doesn't stick out as obviously over-matched. He fits right in.
That's the pitcher I wanted
Back when Mark Buehrle's name was connected with the Yankees, Tyler Clippard was the pitching prospect who I coveted (because I knew Hughes was untouchable) along with Melky Cabrera. He's not a stuff guy in that he doesn't throw hard, but he's got good secondary pitches. He's a lot like Andy Sonnanstine, who got his first start today. They're guys who don't necessarily project to be top-of-the-rotation starters, but can give you quality innings cheaply. I suppose that's the type of pitcher what the Sox hoped Lance Broadway and Kyle McCulloch would become. Unfortunately for the Sox, neither McCulloch or Broadway can match Sonnanstine or Clippard's minor league production.
I'd expect a major league team to mount a respectable offensive against a pitcher like Clippard, but it's tough to argue that the Sox put a major league lineup on the field. Mackowiak is a bench player, Cintron will be out of the majors next year, Owens looks like a 26th man, and Uribe, despite the renewed patience, is pulling off everything and still swinging at some terrible pitches. Oh, and the entirety of the rest of the lineup is hitting below their career averages.
Just DL him already!
Coming into the season, the only injury more predictable than Podsednik's groin or Erstad's ankle was Joe Crede's back. What's really troubling is that Crede's back is acting up at the very beginning of the season when it usually waits until August or September to shut him down for a week or two, and I think he's been downplaying how much it's been bothering him. He was out of the lineup again tonight, and was 1-for-his-last-18 and 3-for-his-last-26.
Completely unrelated, or not, Josh Fields has a .394 OBP in Charlotte a year after posting a .379 mark. Crede's OBP in his two years at Charlotte was .349 and .359.
All the pieces are in place
Not that I blame them -- Percival was clearly breaking down in the years before his retirement -- but with all the bullpen troubles of the Sox, you'd expect them to be represented at Troy Percival's workout.