“O” for Everything

Wow. What an impressive Opening Weekend we had against the Texas Rangers. That was so much fun, let’s do it again. Oh, that’s right — we have 159 games left in the season. Oh joy.

I don’t want to rant because… well… because no one really likes to read someone’s rant. And a rant won’t solve anything.

Where to begin…

Let’s start on a positive note – Big Papi – my favorite player. He got his first two homeruns of the season out of the way early. That was a huge relief. So glad to see him step up to the plate and watch the ball sail out into the bleachers.

But where was everyone else?

I am bitterly disappointed in our starting rotation. Lester’s Opening Day performance was gag-worthy. I could be wrong, but I do not believe he struck out one single batter. *yak* And is it just me or does Lester look HUGE this season? His thighs are the size of tree trunks. Not sure if that’s good or bad. I guess if you are a competition powerlifter, that’s good. Starting pitcher in the MLB – maybe not so good.

Lackey was his usual Lack-luster self. And once again, he was left in too long. When we acquired him two years ago, I never thought he was an “ace.” Roy Halladay, CC Sabathia, Cliff Lee — those guys are Aces with a capital “A.” Everyone says: “Oh, Lackey – he’s a real competitor!” So what? Every Weekend Warrior on a softball field from Maine to California is a competitor. Just because you want to win badly, that does not make you an ace. Winning games, fanning batters, having more than one or two pitches in your arsenal — that is what makes you an ace. And what did he ever do for the Angels? I saw him blow plenty of postseason games for them. I’m just sayin’…

I cannot comment on Buchholz’s trip to the mound because I was not able to watch the early innings of the third game. All I know is we lost another game.

So I have to ask myself: What have these guys been doing all off-season? What have they been doing during Spring Training? They look like they haven’t thrown a pitch in over six months. Geez.

I think too much time is spent during Spring Training on the wannabe players — the guys from Triple-A and the others we invite to camp. I don’t think there is enough time spent on getting our starters ready to compete in April. Yes, April is early and there is still plenty of baseball left to be played. Still, you cannot start the season down 14 games. Well, I guess if you are the Yankees you can and still win a World Series.

I realize these guys still have some rust on them. I get that. But they look like they just got up out of their Lazy-Boy Recliners and decided to play baseball. And whose fault is it? Can we blame the new pitching coach? I would like to because I did not see one positive move on his part all weekend.

Personally, I am glad the Red Sox got knocked around this opening weekend. I have a feeling there was just a little too much complacency in the clubhouse during the off-season. I hope I am wrong, but when everyone and their brother is ranking the Red Sox #1 on paper back in February, I have to believe that has a negative effect on some guys.

I won’t even get into the other performances of the weekend. I don’t have enough time. But let me say one thing about Carl Crawford. He is not going to take the media and fan scrutiny up in Boston very well if he doesn’t start performing. I do not believe he has the personality to let it roll off his back. He is going to get criticized BIG TIME, and he won’t be able to take it. Just watch…

My final thoughts:

  • Being a great team on paper means absolutely nothing. You still have to win games.
  • I think the chemistry of this team is pretty good. I would expect they will band together in the coming weeks.
  • My jury is out on Curt Young, the new pitching coach. He looked lost and bewildered this week, unable to make a decision without looking to Terry Francona for validation.
  • Saltalamacchia needs some major batting practice.
  • Papelbon looked pathetic initially then seemed to find his groove. He is a wild card, for sure.
  • I think Bard will be okay.

Next stop, Cleveland and Josh Beckett… *fingers are crossed*

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