23 November 2007

Red Sox Relievers in Review

Red Sox Review, Part 2: Relievers
For relievers, the stat set is IP/ERA/WHIP/K-BB/HR/SV/W-L/Grade
They're sort by IP. No predictions for most relievers, they're so irregular.

Hideki Okajima 69.0/2.22/0.97/63-17/6/5/3-2/A
Oki was possibly the free agent signing of season if it wasn't for the ridiculous season Carlos Pena had for the Rays. Oki was everything the Sox could ask for and more. When combined with the Sox front office deciding to rest Oki before the playoffs, thus creating the unstoppable (until he met Matt Holliday) pitching machine. I'm guessing on a bit of a regressive for Oki in 2008, but I'm hoping he doesn't pull a Shinjo Takatsu. 

Jonathan Papelbon 58.1/1.85/0.77/84-14/5/1-3/A+
He is the best closer in MLB. There, I said it. Not only did he have a monstrous regular season, but he was the meanest MF-er in the playoff. Sure, J.J. Putz might have gotten more saves and a few Cy Young/MVP votes, but Papelbon was simply dominant. I think we can settle on the idea of leaving him as closer for the foreseeable future. I cannot remember the Red Sox ever having such a dominant closer except maybe when Flash Gordon was at his very short peak. 

Mike Timlin 55.1/3.42/1.08/31-14/7/1/2-1/B
You know, I didn't realize what a decent season Timlin had in 2008. Low WHIP, OK K/BB, decent number of innings pitched. Not sure what he has left in the tank, but if his Sox swan-song was his World Series Game 4 performance, he couldn't have chosen a better way to go out.

Kyle Snyder 54.1/3.81/1.42/41-32/7/0/2-3/C
Look up "mop up guy" in the dictionary, and you'll find Kyle Snyder. I did get the honor of seeing him pitch in Oakland in 2007. He was OK minus the game winning home run he gave up to Eric Chavez in extra innings. Well, I guess thats not OK. His K/BB is pretty miserable, but like Julian Tavarez, he's a good swing man ... if he's cheap.

Manny Delcarmen 44.0/2.05/1.02/41-17/4/1/0-0/A-
Wow, Manny Delcarmen tended to be like Jekyl-and-Hyde in 2007. He really did a good job in the regular season of getting his K/BB down from 2006 and his WHIP was sparkling. However, in the post season he was wild again, looking like he was overthrowing. That being said, I think he's going to be a great 7-8th inning pitcher for the Sox in 2008, but I wouldn't put all my eggs in the Delcarmen basket just yet.

Javier Lopez 40.2/3.10/1.33/26-18/2/0/2-1/B-
Ugh. Why do we have this terrible LOOGY on the roster anyway? He was worse versus lefties than righties in 2008. The lefty sidewinder let righties hit .176 against him (in 21 innings) while lefties - who he is supposed to get out, mind you - hit .293 against him (in 19.2 innings). .293! He turned every lefty he faced into Kevin Youkilis! When you combine that with his miserable K/BB, I think the only thing the Sox should be doing is telling him how to collect his ring in 2008 and thanks for the memories.

Joel Pineiro 34.0/5.03/1.62/20-14/3/0/1-1/D (Sox Stats)
Piniero was a grand experiment that failed, so he was traded to the NL and worked out OK as a starter for the Cardinals. He started 11 games for the Cards and gave them a 3.96 ERA and 1.27 WHIP, so they rewarded him with a 2 year deal. Good for him. Look for him to be a little better than league average throwing in the NL Central.

Brendan Donnelly 20.2/3.05/1.16/15-5/0/0/2-1/C
Started promising, had TJ surgery, out for 2008.

J.C. Romero 20.0/3.15/1.95/11-15/2/1/1-0/D (Sox Stats)
Wow, his WHIP and K/BB were terrible, however he did provide me with my best live Sox memory of 2007, when he somehow got out of a bases loaded, bottom of the ninth jam vs. the A's by inducing an inning-ending double play. He pitched well above his talent after getting picked up by the Phils who rewarded him with a 3 year deal (which they will be regretting in about half a year).

Eric Gagne 18.2/6.75/1.88/22-9/1/0/2-2/D (Sox Stats)
I'm not sure what caused Gagne to become a pumpkin when he came to the Sox. Maybe he truly proves the idea that a "born closer" needs to pitch for saves, because as a setup man for the Sox, he was terrible. When I saw him pitch on TV, he seemed to be overthrowing and trying to just throw fastballs. That got him into trouble and he would walk hitter after hitter. I'm guessing he bounces back in 2008, but man, it would be nice to have Dave Murphy or Engel Beltre back for this mess.

Bryan Corey 9.1/1.93/1.07/6-4/0/0/1-0/(B)
People (aka, SOSH fans) liked Corey enough in his 9.1 IP to want him on the Sox postseason roster. I don't know if I'd go that far, but he might make a good middle reliever in 2008, although his K/BB was nothing to write home.

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