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Thursday, August 21, 2008

Pickoff Moves, Bedtime Edition

AFLAC! Dodgers 3, Rockies 1

Kinda surprised the Rocks didn't do more against Derek Lowe, but they never really got traction against him save for the run in the first, Matt Holliday's sac fly that proved to be the Rocks' only run of the game. Derek Lowe got himself to 10-10, and mucho thanks to James Loney, who posted a solo homer in the seventh to give the Dodgers an insurance run they didn't need, as it turned out. Loney also drove in the game-winning run on a fourth-inning RBI single. Nice job, just as we were grousing about whether Loney was an elite defender or not over at DT.

Yahoo boxMLB.com recap

Mike Scioscia Still Thinks Justin Speier Doesn't Suck: Twins 2, Angels 1 (12 Innings)


I turned off the TV after the leadoff triple. Hope left the building.

Yahoo box

OT: World Of Warcraft: Wrath Of The Lich King Trailer

My friend Noel is working on this one for Blizzard; here's the trailer. I don't really follow gaming stuff much, but you might take a peek even if you don't, because this is some cool stuff.

Dayn Perry On The Balance Of Schedule For Playoff Contenders

The Angels have the lightest schedule of any AL playoff contenders, but what continues to bug me is that this information isn't generally available; it seems to me exactly the sort of thing that Baseball Prospectus should be providing. Anyway, the commentary:
Remaining Opponents' Avg. Win%: 0.476
Home Games Left/Road Games Left: 21/16
Biggest Series: 9/5-9/7 @White Sox

The Angels are going to win the AL West by a wide margin, and considering how much easier their schedule is relative to every other AL contender, they'll almost certainly wind up with home-field advantage throughout the postseason.


Remaining Opponents' Avg. Win%: 0.472
Home Games Left/Road Games Left: 20/16
Biggest Series: 9/5-9/7 @Dodgers

The Snakes will play the Dodgers six more times this season, with the final three-game set going down in L.A. Overall, give 'Zona the edge in schedule. The Dodgers play inferior opponents, but the home-road splits favor Arizona by a mile.


Remaining Opponents' Avg. Win%: 0.444
Home Games Left/Road Games Left: 12/23
Biggest Series: 9/5-9/7 Diamondbacks

As you can see, the Dodgers play almost two-thirds of their remaining games on the road, and this season they're just 26-32 away from Chavez Ravine. The mitigating factor, however, is that the rest of the way no contender plays an easier slate of teams than the Dodgers do. In rough terms, it's like playing the Reds every day from this point forward. Still, that's a lot of road games ...

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I didn't like the Speier decision either, and I agree he sucks, but truthfully, he did his job. He got guys to hit the ball to places where outs should have been recorded. When you're paying a guy a crapload of money to be a gold glove center fielder, he really ought to make the catch on that ball to center field.
That ball was catchable, but it would have required a highlight reel play to do it.
It hit his freaking glove. He didn't even need to jump for it. He wasn't even sprinting, he was drifting. They may have called it a triple, but it should have been a fairly routine catch.
Huh... I don't remember it that way ... I recall it missing his glove by a good foot or two.
Hunter should have caught the ball. he says himself he lost that game.

when the offense gets just a run in the first on a HR, and nothing after, you have to place the blame on them.

the way the bullpen is going, i'm surprised Arrendondo or Frankie or Shields or Oliver didn't cough it up sooner.

But at this point, Speier shouldn't be on the playoff roster.
Brian -- you're right, it was in the Times game recap:

Hunter blamed himself for nudging the Twins one step closer to the postseason by failing to rob Punto of his game-changing hit.

"I had a bead on it, I just didn't get to it," Hunter said. "It's my bad. I lost that game."

Hunter's a standup guy, but that doesnt' change the fact that Speier served up a belt-high meatball to Nick Freakin' Punto, who hit it halfway up the wall in right. Maybe Hunter usually makes the catch, but the ball was still crushed to the wall. It would have been OVER the wall in most ballparks.

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