Monday, May 15, 2017


MAY 15, 2017

So I know the Red Sox have had a slew of injuries. The most serious in the pitching department: David Price, Carson Smith, Tyler Thornburg (Travis Shaw said thanks, he loves hitting in his new park), and Steven Wright (gone for the season). Smith and Thornburg are on the 60-day disabled list.

So where once there was a plethora of starters, now the team is praying that (A) David Price is healthy and can pitch again, and (B) that no other starter’s arm falls off. Drew Pomeranz, who made it through three innings Sunday, may be OK and not miss a start.

Chris Sale has been phenomenal (4-2 with poor run support). Watching Sale pitch is a joy. Must viewing. He doesn’t mess around. Get the ball. Throw the ball. And when he has two strikes on the batter, Sale is deadly efficient. He can tie Pedro’s record - 8 straight games of 10 or more strikeouts for a 2nd time. Sale is a true ace. One of the best.

Rick Porcello has been good and gotten no runs and bad when the team has provided  support (2-5, 4.01 ERA). A return to the Porcello of 2016 would help.

The real #2 pitcher on this team is Eduardo Rodriguez who has been consistently good (1-1, 2.80 ERA). He should sue for lack of support as the team has been agonizingly bad at scoring him runs.

That leaves Drew Pomeranz (keep your fingers crossed) and the PawSox. There are two options at Pawtucket: LHP Brian Johnson who has had a spot start, and RHP Hector Velazquez, who pitched for two teams in the Mexican League last year (over 240 innings). I saw Velasquez throw a no hitter for 6 innings vs Gwinnett, and get pulled for pitch count. The next start Velasquez went another 2 1/3 innings before giving up a hit.

A Google search shows Boston got the 28 year old by negotiating with his team Piratas de Campeche. Boston beat out the Yanks for him. Velazquez has an arsenal, but has not made it to the majors. Velazquez (2-1, 1.55 ERA) will get a shot. He’d have to be added to the 40-man roster. That happens if the Sox put Steven Wright on the 60-day DL.

Hopefully, Johnson and/or Velazquez are short term solutions. They could still contribute down the road.

If it weren’t for Craig Kimbrel, the Red Sox bullpen would be more of a mess. Kimbrel has been the closer equivalent of Chris Sale. When Kimbrel has that curve ball, he is devastating. Kimbrel has now struck out 13 of the last 15 batters faced.

Joe Kelly is starting to stabilize. Maybe Chris Sale told him to use his best pitch – the fastball when it’s 3 and 2. LHP Robby Scott has been very good (0.96) as the lefty specialist, but usually only faces a couple batters.

The rest of the relievers have started to regress. Barnes is not the same, probably from overuse. Hembree and Ross, Jr. have taken turns getting hammered. Fernando Abad has been OK (2.61 ERA), but I don’t trust him for more than an inning. Kid pitcher Ben Taylor (4.22) has also suffered from overuse.

If Boston doesn’t get either Carson Smith or Tyler Thornburg back this year, that bullpen will be an adventure in trying to get to Kimbrel, who already has two 5-out saves.

The team has looked dead at times. There has been more life shown by the zombies in The Walking Dead. When the camera pans to the Red Sox dugout and they show manager John Farrell, I get nauseous. He is not a good ‘thinks outside the box’ manager.  In fact, he’s not a very good ‘thinks inside the box’ manager. His pitching coach Carl Willis underwhelms me. The problem, as FootJoy pointed out, is that with Torey Lovullo gone to Arizona, there isn’t any strong candidate to replace ‘Flummoxing Farrell’. If it gets bad, I’d give PawSox manager Kevin Boles a shot. He’s managed many of these guys at Portland and Pawtucket. Oh and Manager Farrell – please take Benintendi out of the cleanup spot. That’s too much pressure for such a young player.

•Ryan Hannable ( – 5/15) had Falcons coach Dan Quinn revealing the reason that Atlanta blew a 25-point lead. After watching the game film, Quinn said that his defense had never played into the 90’s (opponent’s plays) and his defense was gassed. The Patriots set a Super Bowl record with 93 plays. Actually Dan, your team lost because you called some dumb plays. Quinn the Eskimo. Come in out of the cold.

• You wonder how much the loss of closers will hurt the Yankees and Orioles. Aroldis Chapman (inflamed rotator cuff – out at least a month) and Zach Britton (forearm strain – out 45-60 days) are now on the DL. That puts more pressure on Dellin Betances for NY and Brad Brach for Baltimore.
     Sportzine is available at thanks to Buffalo Steve Lenz
• The Astros lead the AL West (26-12). The other 4 teams are under .500. The Nationals (24-13) lead the NL East and the other 4 teams are under .500.

• The Providence Bruins are on the verge of elimination to Hershey down 3-2 in games in the Calder Cup playoffs. Bruins goalie Zane McIntyre gave up his first 1st period goal Sunday in 10 games. A good chance that McIntyre is Rask’s backup next year.

• Aaron Hernandez’s lawyers will go after almost $6 Mill the Patriots may owe since his conviction was overturned due to a Massachusetts principle (if you die during an appeal, your conviction is vacated). Is there a clause in the contract that protects the Patriots?

James, as usual, very good zine. Also, you did a great job of addressing the racial slur incident.  Is the answer to the quiz the late, great Warren Zevon?
Mike Curtis
Mike, good guess but not the right answer. Thanks for the kind words.   -   Z

Hey Jim was it that Werewolf of London, Warren Zevon?
Bill Flanagan
Bill, good guess but no, not Warren Zevon. Someone else also thought it was Zevon. Thanks for reading and responding. - Z

Dan Fogelberg.  I have that album if you want me to burn you a copy.
Matt Dawson
Matt, yes it's Dan Fogelberg. I have Souvenirs on LP and on CD, I think. Thanks for the offer.     -   Z

Dan Fogelberg, Souvenirs. I would guess that "Twin Sons of Different Mothers" with Tim Weisberg is the other.
The Wizard
Wiz, right you are - Dan Fogelberg, Souvenirs (There's a Place in the World for a Gambler), Tim Weisberg and their LP Twin Sons of Different Mothers. My brother Brad knew it too and just texted me a pic of the Twin Sons of Different Mothers album from some store in Asheville. Thanks for responding.   -  Z

Hope the Sox continue their hitting ways and I'm hopeful that David Price can make his comeback soon (and make a big contribution the rest of the season).
I'll go with Dan Fogelberg for the quiz answer this week...and I believe he did the album "Twin Sons From Different Mothers" with Tim Weisberg. Fogelberg's "Souvenirs" still gets played here and is a classic. He left us way too soon.
Brad Dawson
You are correct, Brad - it's Fogelberg, Weisberg and Twin Sons of Different Mothers. Enjoyed the photo of the Twin Sons of Different Mothers album.    -  Z

Jim - I believe the answer is Dan Fogelberg--I know he did an album with Tim Weisberg (something about sons & mothers?) the flutist.
Ken Forestal
Ken, yes it's Dan Fogelberg who did an album with Tim Weisberg called Twin Sons of Different Mothers. And you are right. Weisberg plays the flute.

Probably came up with your trivia question because of the Kentucky Derby, right?? Dan Fogelberg (Run for the Roses) died way too soon (he lived for a long time on Deer Isle, Maine). The other artist was Tim Weisberg, and on "Twin Sons of Different Mothers" Don Henley gets an album credit for backing vocals.
Driller Killer
Very good, Driller, and you knew the Deer Isle, Maine connection. I think Fogelberg had his ashes spread there. Didn't know about the Henley backing vocals.   -   Z

Am going with Dan Fogelberg. and that would make the other artist Tim Weisberg with "Twin Sons of Different Mothers" LP.
And how bout dem Yankees for a change? First in a long time we have had anything to cheer about down here in the Bronx...: )
Joe Salvo
Yes, Joe, it's Dan Fogelberg, Tim Weisberg and Twin Sons of Different Mothers. I have Souvenirs which has a bunch of good songs. Didn't realize that Joe Walsh produced it and played on most of the tracks.
Your Yankees have the best record in baseball last I knew (Ed: true when written, it’s now the Astros with the best record). Cashman has done a good job with the trade returns. I wonder if their starting pitching will hold up. They've got the back end secured. Always an interesting summer when the Yanks and Sox are competitive.    -   Z

Re the longest game by innings Sox-Brewers 25-innings won by Chicago 7-6 (5/8/84):
Hey Jim,
Cardinals and Mets also played 25 inning game Sept 11, 1974 won by Cards 4-3. Those were the 2 longest when there was a winner. I'm surprised you didn't mention the longest game in professional baseball history!! But that would be too easy !!
Jim Dwyer
Jim, you are right about the Cards-Mets game tying for longest by innings. Just checked and found the reference. They refer to those 25 inning games as being the longest with a decision which explains about the 1920 game Brad found on his trivia calendar. It was suspended due to darkness. Yes I thought about adding the 1981 PawSox-Red Wings 33-inning game which is the longest professional baseball game. Probably always will be. The umps screwed up that night and didn't suspend it.     -   Z

Fleet Feet Pete greeted Foot Joy with what sounded like ‘You’re my favorite asshole’. Foot Joy responded “Look in the mirror”. Fleet Feet replied ‘No, I said fellow asshole.”
Time to cue up the Hot Club juke box and play Denis Leary’s Asshole.

And speaking of the Hot Club juke box, I’ve learned this year that it can be hijacked. After putting in my $5 for 12 songs, the selections were interrupted by ‘music’ I didn’t pick. There is an app called TouchTunes that allows you to do this. Of course, it costs you more since you’re hopping ahead.

In a conversation with Making His Mark, I had mentioned having tickets to see and hear Bob Dylan at PPAC. We agreed that Dylan is not always in good voice. I mentioned seeing Dylan at McCoy Stadium and he was unintelligible.

Mark said that his father lived on the street in New York City that was used by the photographer who took the album picture of Dylan and his female friend walking down. That album was The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan (1963). Dylan’s then girlfriend Suze Rotolo walks holding tightly onto Dylan. The photographer was Don Hunstein. The site of the photo shoot is described as the corner of Jones Street and West 4th Street (Wikipedia).

So who was that folk rock singer with a smash Joe Walsh produced 2nd album, had 5 albums in Billboard’s Top 20 and did an album with another artist that went to #8? Many of you got it (see Emails): Dan Fogelberg whose Souvenirs (1974) went to #17 and went double platinum. It also gave Fogelberg his 1st hit – Part of the Plan. His first of two collaborations with jazz flautist Tim Weisberg was Twin Sons of Different Mothers (1978). Fogelberg died from advanced prostate cancer. He spent 25 years living on Deer Isle, Maine. His ashes were scattered into the Atlantic Ocean (Wikipedia).

This band had a short career but its group members could be considered one of the first super groups as two joined another super group, and two other members had success playing with other musicians. They had a Top 10 hit and the band is in the Rock n Roll Hal of Fame. Name?


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