Boston has only managed to win five of its last 10 games but it remains just a half a game in back of New york in the most heated division race in the Majors. The Red Sox are 77-49 overall; 38-24 at home and 39-25 on the road.
Seeing as both starters have had relative success against either club, it wouldn’t be surprising to the series decided by the bullpen- which on paper Chicago decidedly has the upper hand.
Adam Dunn, Gordon Beckham, Brent Morel or Mark Teahen, and Alex Rios were thought to be the guys that would put the southsiders among the best in the American league.
Pitching isn’t exactly like riding a bike, but as long as Peavy’s mechanics are fine, his command should come back to him. It’ll take repetition before his command is back to where it was from May-July of 2010, but it should come back quicker than his velocity and stamina. That being said, whatever results Peavy sees in spring should be taken with a grain of salt given his command will take some time to return. But, if by some miracle, his command returns after a handful of spring outings and he’s able to locate within the strike zone well, his return schedule could be sped up.
What worries me is that I’m not sure Owens will be able to simply hit the ball harder. His extra-base numbers in the minor leagues are not impressive: 24 in 2006, 13 in 2007, 12 in 2008 (all with AAA Charlotte). He may not have it in him to get 30+ extra base hits in a season, so if he’s going to stick for at least a year, he has to turn himself into an on-base machine.
James Shields maintained the edge in an all-star caliber pitchers’ duel against lefty ace sale jerseys, but was pulled after 103 pitches. Shields (2.52 ERA) gave up two hits in eight innings, striking out nine and walking two. Sale (3.42 ERA) gave up one run on six hits in 7 1/3 innings, fanning five and walking none.
The Giants averaged 27.1 putouts, the Tigers averaged 26.7 and the Pirates averaged 26.1. The team with the least number of putouts was the Cubs, Orioles, Nationals, Indians, Diamondbacks, Athletics, and Pirates.