for October 2002
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October 31, 2002
programs fortifying Sox
Ian Browne, mlb.com
The Red Sox won't start filing into Spring Training in Fort Myers, Fla., for three months. But the vacation that started on Sept. 30 came to an unofficial end on Oct. 21, when many Sox players started their workout programs orchestrated by Chris Correnti, the team's assistant trainer and rehabilitation coordinator. A behind-the-scenes figure, Correnti received exposure in the summer of 2002, when Pedro Martinez and Derek Lowe vied for the AL Cy Young Award. Both pitchers religiously followed Correnti's program last winter and weren't shy about discussing its impact on their success.
October 30, 2002
Have You Gone, Enn Raudsepp?
Jonah Keri, Baseball Prospectus
When I was little, I thought sportswriters had the coolest job in the world. ... I hate myself now for thinking that way. Mainstream sports journalism has become a wasteland for self-serving, pompous backbiters, eager to make their bones at others' expense. ... If a writer wants to get famous by ripping the sports star du jour rather than offering insightful commentary, so be it. ... what set me off today was a blatant breach of journalistic ethics. ...
After Game 7 of the World Series ended Sunday night ... We'll let Bob Klapisch, veteran baseball writer for The Record of Bergen, N.J. and ESPN.com, take it from here:
He was dressed and ready for the door within 30 minutes, and obviously resented the thick crowd that had gathered at his locker, delaying his exit. "Back off. You're stepping on my son," Bonds said to reporters. "Back off or I'll snap."
... The passage above appeared in Klapisch's post-Game 7 column for ESPN.com. The next day, with some time to reflect, Klapisch decided to grind his ax and chop Big Man Bonds into itty-bitty pieces. Here's what he wrote for northjersey.com:
And then there was Barry Bonds, who cemented his credentials as the game's greatest player, perhaps ever, but was as cold and surly as ever in defeat. "Back off. Back off or I'll snap," Bonds told reporters who pressed close to his locker.
Quotes get clipped all the time in the newspaper business. ... That's not what Klapisch did here. He purposely distorted the truth to advance an agenda. ... It's not like Klapisch didn't get the full quote, like he missed part of it. He had it, he chopped it to pieces, and he skewered Bonds with it.
It didn't end with Klapisch. Sports Illustrated's Rick Reilly chimed in today with his thoughts on Bonds. Keep in mind, this is three days after Backoffgate first broke. He's had plenty of time to sift through the reams of wire reports on Bonds' post-game comments to get them right ...
The next night, Game 7, left Bonds's dream dead at the Ed, and a few hundred reporters had no choice but to go to his locker to ask him about it. He greeted them with, "Back off or I'll snap."
Why did Reilly do this? ... Scads of other writers have similarly mangled Bonds' statements during these last three days too. So why pick on Klapisch and Reilly? Because they're who I wanted to be growing up.
October 29, 2002
Michael Silverman, Boston Herald
After a four-week layoff, Pedro Martinez began his offseason workout program yesterday at his home in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. He will work out four days a week until December, when he will begin throwing and adding an extra day of exercise.
October 25, 2002
moment tops Aaron's record-breaking HR
1. Cal Ripken Jr. breaks Lou Gehrig's
consecutive games streak: 282,821
2. Hank Aaron breaks Babe Ruth's all-time home run record: 275,451
3. Jackie Robinson breaks baseball ban on black players: 251,564
4. The 1998 home run chase by Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa: 242,279
5. Lou Gehrig's farewell speech in Yankee Stadium: 237,131
6. Pete Rose breaks Ty Cobb's all-time career hits record: 230,852
7. Ted Williams becomes the last player to hit above .400: 203,982
8. Joe DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak: 176,810
9. Kirk Gibson's pinch-hit HR in Game 1, 1988 World Series: 157,716
10. Nolan Ryan's seventh career no-hitter: 146,269
[Is there any baseball
writer out there who agrees with this choice?
I'm going to try to find one. If anyone knows of a supportive article, let me know.]
plan does not translate
Gordon Edes, Boston Globe
The mind reeled. Then I called Larry Lucchino - only after the hotel operator assured me he had given the Sox CEO two wake-up calls. I told Lucchino about the story. ''Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha,'' Lucchino said. ''Nothing to it.'' Click. I shot off an e-mail to John W. Henry. Surely he could use the rent money if the Expos played in Fenway for a year, like Madden had written. Henry, who is never far from a computer, sent me a reply. It was short enough to have been written in Morse code. ''No discussions with MLB,'' he wrote. ''None.''
Sox won't share Fenway
Jeff Horrigan, Boston Herald
Officials from Major League Baseball, the Montreal Expos and the Red Sox completely shot down a report yesterday that said the Expos were considering a move to Fenway Park for the 2003 season. ... "There is no truth to it,'' Red Sox CEO Larry Lucchino said through a spokesman. "There is absolutely no truth to it.'' Rich Levin, MLB's executive vice president for public relations, said the story didn't even merit an official response from commissioner Bud Selig. "It's nonsense,'' Levin said. "That's all that needs to be said.''
many as 20 Expos games could be in Puerto Rico next year
Ronald Blum, Associated Press
As many as 20 Montreal Expos home games could be moved to Puerto Rico next year under a plan baseball officials discussed Thursday before Game 5 of the World Series. ... Charlotte, N.C., Portland, Ore., and Washington, D.C., have also been considered for Expos' home games, but the focus is on Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, one lawyer familiar with the discussions said Thursday on the condition of anonymity.
October 24, 2002
Baseball Awards: Cy Young
Greg Spira, Baseball prospectus
Winning a close race with Barry Zito and Derek Lowe, Pedro Martinez followed in the footsteps of Randy Johnson, Greg Maddux and Roger Clemens by winning his fourth Internet Cy Young Award. Zito was actually named on more ballots than Martinez and finished a extremely strong second.
1 2 3 4 5
Pedro Martinez 954 596 295 56 30 1931 15385
Barry Zito 775 666 449 71 24 1985 14894
Derek Lowe 256 571 859 142 43 1871 11321
Balls: My MasterCard Memorable Moment
Derek Zumsteg, Baseball Prospectus
MasterCard's whole priceless campaign ... ties all of the great qualities of those moments--courage in the face of racism, triumph from defeat, respect and dignity in retirement--to the faceless brand of MasterCard. ... Memories are personal: infused with meaning from what you bring to the games, who you're with, events in your own life. They're not for sale, and that's why I'm offended by this campaign. Voting doesn't determine anyone's most memorable moment. It solves nothing, but the very process is just another part of the strip-mining of baseball ... Baseball wants to make money. It's a business, I understand. But while I've grown accustomed to the constant branding of everything around us, I'm saddened that baseball saw fit to buy and appropriate the memories of every fan, and hold them up to be judged as right or wrong in a balloting process.
looking Fenway way
Bill Madden, New York Daily News
How's this for a wild pitch: The Boston Expos. The Daily News has learned that there have been preliminary discussions at the highest levels of baseball about having the MLB-owned Montreal Expos share Fenway Park with the Red Sox next season. According to a source with knowledge of the discussions, the Expos would play in Fenway for one year while MLB continues to search for a buyer - and a suitable permanent location for them.
October 23, 2002
Sox submit plan for Fenway expansion -- 300 seats envisioned atop Green
Scott S. Greenberger, Boston Globe
The Boston Red Sox are moving forward with plans to put more than 300 seats on top of Fenway Park's legendary Green Monster, build nearly 250 more seats on the right-field roof, and add restrooms and a picnic area to the cramped concourse near right field. In an application submitted to the Boston Redevelopment Authority late yesterday, the team also asked for permission to make permanent improvements to Yawkey Way, which it began closing during home games at the end of last season to create more space for concession stands. Plans for the street include a video board and a replica of the Green Monster scoreboard.
October 21, 2002
Bonds usually not a smart choice
Derek Zumsteg, espn.com
It's hard to believe at some level that pitching to a guy who hits as well as Bonds can be a winning proposition, but it is; in almost every situation, putting another man on greatly increases the scoring chances for that inning. Pitching to Bonds is dangerous, but it still will get you an out around 50 percent of the time, and you've got to get 27 outs to end the game. To put it another way, you're five times more likely to get an out than to have him hit a home run. You can win that game. Plus, every time you walk Bonds, you're increasing the chance you're going to see him again. Which is bad.
did they pitch to Ruth?
David Schoenfield, espn.com
shouldn't we pitch to Ruth? I've said before, and I'll say it again, we
pitch to better hitters than Ruth in the National League."
-- Giants manager John McGraw, before Game 2 of the 1923 World Series
The Babe went out and hit two home runs that day and the Yankees would go on to defeat the Giants to win their first World Series championship. While you won't hear Mike Scioscia say such words about Barry Bonds, the anticipation of seeing Bonds in the World Series is similar to the anticipation of seeing Babe Ruth in 1923. And back then, like this year with Bonds, the big question was: Will they pitch to Ruth?
October 18, 2002
Red Sox announced their Arizona Fall League and winter-league assignments.
They are as follows (with 2002 clubs):
ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE
RHP Josh Hancock (Trenton/Pawtucket/Boston)
RHP Andy Shibilo (Mobile/Trenton/Pawtucket)
RHP Marty McLeary (Trenton/Pawtucket)
INF Andy Dominique (Trenton)
INF Kevin Youkilis (Sarasota/Augusta/Trenton)
OF Justin Sherrod (Sarasota/Augusta/Trenton)
RHP Anastacio Martinez (Trenton)
RHP Rene Miniel (Sarasota)
RHP Juan Perez (Sarasota)
C Carlos Alaman (Lowell/Augusta)
3B Tony Blanco (Sarasota)
RHP Juan Pena (Fort Myers/Pawtucket)
1B Juan Diaz (Pawtucket/Boston)
3B Wilton Veras (Trenton/Pawtucket)
OF Mario Campos (Lowell)
LHP Jorge de la Rosa (Sarasota/Trenton)
LHP Mauricio Lara (Sarasota)
INF Bryant Nelson (Pawtucket/Boston).
RHP Isauro Pineda (Trenton)
UTL Alex Ahumada (Sarasota/Trenton)
3B Shane Andrews (Pawtucket/Boston)
1B Todd Betts (Pawtucket)
2B Freddy Sanchez (Trenton/Pawtucket/Boston)
OF Tonayne Brown (Trenton)
OF Anton French (Trenton)
OF Justin Headley (Trenton)
OF Benny Agbayani (Colorado/Colorado Springs/Pawtucket/Boston)
RHP Felix Villegas (Sarasota/Trenton)
INF Carlos Baerga (Boston)
2B Rey Sanchez (Boston)
INF Raul Nieves (Sarasota/Trenton)
2B Angel Santos (Pawtucket)
RHP Todd Erdos (Pawtucket)
LHP Argimiro Guanchez (Ciudad Alianza)
RHP Dernier Orozco (Ciudad Alianza)
2B Melvin Dorta (Sarasota)
2B Juan Salazar (Augusta)
OF Pedro Daza (Ciudad Alianza)
LHP Wilfredo Ledezma (Fort Myers/Augusta)
C Edgar Martinez (Augusta)
RHP Ugueth Urbina (Boston)
C Luis Rodriguez (Pawtucket)
2B Carlos Leon (Trenton)
Colombia Winter League
RHP Sergio Angulo (Ciudad Alianza)
October 14, 2002
My big, fat nightmare
Bill Simmons, espn.com
Q: Did you see Clemens might come back to the Red Sox? Nooooooooooo! Noooooooooooooo! Noooooooooo!!!!!! -- Jake P, Arlington, Mass.
Sports Guy: If this happens, I'm not even bothering with the lighter fluid and the matches ... I'm moving to the West Coast. That's it. You think I'm kidding. Here's the only way I could possibly describe my feelings about a Clemens return: ...
October 12, 2002
the best team win ... some of the time
Tom Tippett, Diamond Mind Baseball
Baseball cliche: "Anything can happen in a short series." Observation #1: Since 1990, the team with the best overall regular-season record has won one World Series.
Observation #2: Since the extra round of playoffs was added in 1995, the team with the better regular season record has won 13 division series and lost 13 of them, with two contested by teams with identical records.
Observation #3: In league championship series play since 1990, the team with the better regular season record (among the two teams in the LCS) has won 12 times and lost 9 times, with one LCS involving teams with the same record.
In other words, it's not easy to go all the way. And this isn't a recent phonomenon. Since division play began in 1969, the team with the best regular-season record in baseball has won the World Series only 8 times in 32 tries. ...
NY 19.0% chance to win
October 11, 2002
Bonds' encore even better than his 2001 performance?
Walter Lis, STATS. Inc. (ESPN Insider)
One year removed from what many considered to be the greatest offensive season in the history of Major League Baseball, San Francisco's Barry Bonds faced an enormous task in 2002. The Giants' slugger set a big league record in 2001 with an amazing 73 home runs, but it was his alarmingly consistent ability to get on base and drive in runs that made him the most potent run-producing offensive weapon in the past 125-plus years of baseball.
So just how does one follow up an incredible, record-breaking, never-before-seen campaign? For Bonds, the answer was simple: get even better. ... Bonds hit .404 after the All-Star break, including .447 in August, leading San Francisco to 18 wins in both the months of August and September.
All-Time Single-Season On-Base
Player Year, Tm OBP
Barry Bonds 2002, SF .582
Ted Williams 1941, Bos .551
John McGraw 1899, Bal .547
Babe Ruth 1932, NYY .545
Babe Ruth 1920, NYY .532
Ted Williams 1957, Bos .526
Billy Hamilton 1894, Phi .523
Babe Ruth 1926, NYY .516
Barry Bonds 2001, SF .515
Ted Williams 1954, Bos .513
Babe Ruth 1924, NYY .513
All-Time Single-Season OPS*
Player Year, Tm OBP SLG OPS
Barry Bonds 2002, SF .582 .799 1.381
Babe Ruth 1920, NYY .532 .847 1.379
Barry Bonds 2001, SF .515 .863 1.379
Babe Ruth 1921, NYY .512 .846 1.359
Babe Ruth 1923, NYY .545 .764 1.309
Ted Williams 1941, Bos .551 .735 1.286
Babe Ruth 1927, NYY .486 .772 1.258
Ted Williams 1957, Bos .526 .731 1.257
Babe Ruth 1926, NYY .516 .737 1.253
Babe Ruth 1924, NYY .513 .739 1.252
(* on-base percentage + slugging percentage)
October 6, 2002
Imperfect 10: The dates that doomed the 2002 Red Sox
Michael Silverman, Boston Herald October 2, 2002
A convention of coroners would have their hands full trying to figure out how the just-deceased 2002 Red Sox met their demise. ... An autopsy would reveal the following 10 clues: April 1 ... April 3 ... May 11 ... June 30 ... July 18 ... July 21 ... July 26 ... Aug. 1 ... Aug. 31 ... Sept. 9
October 1, 2002
Michael Silverman, Boston Herald
Right-handers Derek Lowe and Pedro Martinez are scheduled to begin their offseason training regimens Oct. 21 and 28, respectively, according to Chris Correnti, assistant trainer and rehab coordinator. Correnti earned kudos (and a Rolex from Martinez) for his work this season. Several players will report to Correnti in Fort Myers throughout the winter.
Tony Massarotti, Boston Herald
They were America's Team only a year ago, pinstriped patriots representing nationalism, resiliency and strength. The New York Yankees lost the World Series in heartbreaking fashion last autumn, but only after a country rallied around them following the events of Sept. 11. Now, can we all go back to resenting them and everything they stand for? ...
Bob Hohler, Boston Globe
The campaign for the AL Cy Young Award raged until the final day of the season, when Oakland closer Billy Koch unleashed a broadside at Pedro Martinez in promoting his teammate, Barry Zito. Koch sided with fans who believed Martinez should have made one more start rather than shut down after he posted his 20th victory Sept. 22 in Baltimore.
"I think it's selfish and shows what kind of player he is," Koch was quoted as saying after Zito won his league-leading 23d game. "You have an obligation to the guys on your team. Everybody knows he flat-out has the best stuff in the game. He should lead by example." ...
Martinez, who also is competing with Derek Lowe for the award, finished 20-4 and led the league in ERA (2.26), strikeouts (239), winning percentage (.833), and opponents' batting average (.198). Zito, who went 23-5 with a 2.75 ERA, led the league in wins and starts (35), ranked second in winning percentage (.821), and was third in ERA and strikeouts (182).
"Barry goes out and gets the job done," Koch said. "Hands down, he should be the Cy Young." Zito narrowly edged Tim Wakefield (2.81) in the ERA race, preventing Martinez, Lowe (2.58), and Wakefield from becoming the first pitchers to finish 1-2-3 in ERA since the 1943 Cardinals. But the Sox trio swept the top three spots in opponents' batting average: Martinez (.198), Wakefield (.204) and Lowe (.211). Garciaparra cited Wakefield as the team's most valuable player, and Martinez said, "He might be the biggest reason we won 90-something games."
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