Saturday, August 25, 2007

Slow Wally

Kid Rock. That's what I call Bonderman. Because they look alike to me. And they both scare me.

KR lost to the Yanks, so NY is 6.5 behind us. We can make it eight going into The Bronx with a win tomorrow and Yankee losses tomorrow and Monday. Worst case, we're five up on Tuesday morning.

Seeing these brilliant Wakefield performances just makes me angrier when I think of that Newsday story by Wallace Matthews, from back in May. (article was taken down, but here's the cached version.)

Take another look at what this underpant* wrote, and know that as hard as it is to believe, I'm not making it up:
What I want to know is, how in the world has Wakefield been able to draw a major-league paycheck since 1992 with the kind of stuff you generally see at a family barbecue?

His knuckleball, or whatever you want to call it, is a bigger menace to the game than steroids, growth hormone or Clomid will ever be. When Wakefield is pitching, the game moves slower than David Ortiz going from home to first. If as many guys in major-league baseball threw the knuckler as have taken performance-enhancing drugs, the game and its fans would have died of boredom years ago.

His two main points, as you can see with the "paycheck" remark and the "game moves slower than..." remark above, are: Tim Wakefield isn't a good pitcher, and Tim Wakefield is a slow worker on the mound.

Regarding point number one: The guy makes the Boston Red Sox starting rotation every year. He must be doing something right. Maybe it's the fact that he has more wins for the team than anyone in history except Cy Young and Roger Clemens. Maybe it's the fact that his ERA is regularly below league average. I'd also like to see Matthews take a swing at a knuckleball.

Regarding point number two: I still can't believe this writer wasn't immediately fired upon his boss receiving the piece. Let alone the fact that it got published. Complaining about Wakefield being a slow worker is like saying "I'm so sick of Pauly Shore winning Oscars." Tim Wakefield is one of baseball's fastest dealers. The game today was only 3:10, despite Wake's offense scoring fourteen runs. The whole "time of game" thing is a flawed method of determining the speed at which a pitcher works, but if you look at that for Wake's games, you'll see a lot of times that start with "2." Let's see what some non-ridiculous reporters have said lately about Tim!

From Ian Browne's blog: "Wakefield vs. Halladay, two of the fastest workers in baseball..."

From the Hartford Courant's blog: "...we'll have a quick game, with Tim Wakefield facing Mark Buehrle, two of the fastest workers in the bigs."

Amalie Benjamin, today, on Extra Bases: "...with two of the quickest workers in the major leagues on the mound in Tim Wakefield and Mark Buehrle."

People don't just say he's fast, they say he's among the fastest. How Wally Matthews sees "fastest" as "slowest," well--I have a theory: The guy only sees Wakefield in Yankees games. Red Sox-Yankees games take a long time, as you may have noticed. That still doesn't mean Wake is taking any more time between getting the ball from the catcher and throwing the next pitch....

Oh, and that line, "His knuckleball, or whatever you want to call it"--wow. I think the guy was just drunk or something.

So, once again, Tim, keep up the incredible work. Wally, continuing being dead to Red Sox Nation.

Pic of Tim Wakefield in Baltimore with Julio Lugo wearing Manny's wristband in the foreground by me, August 2007.

*new term coined by me for someone even lower on the tool scale than (plural) underpants

Hmmm. It looks like Newsday removed that particular column by Matthews. Maybe because they decided it made him/them look silly.
Liquor wouldn't do that to someone. It HAD to be something way stronger. When Timmy pitches, the game is a blur of flutter after beautiful flutter these days. The only things that slow down his starts are his mate's continuous run scoring and the inability of the foe's hitters to get comfortable at the plate before Timmy makes them look plain old downright silly. Let's hope this streak lasts through the cool reaches of October, the time of the year when the tendrils of autumn mix with red-hot World Championship fever. I've got that fever, and it's contagious, as this 2007 Red Sox team, our team, marches right into our hearts. Forever.
Thanks Jere. I'm a happy guy!
I love me some Tim Wakefield. That knuckleball, when it flutters like it's supposed to, is pure poetry. I love it. And I am amazed by Kevin Cash -- the anti-Josh Bard. (No offense to Bard.) I cannot even begin to tell you how thrilled I am that Wakey is up there with the cream of the crop with wins this year. (And if one more person points out to me how many losses he has, I may scream, since he doesn't have the benefit of the no-decision.)
Good call, dawn and peter.

Horse, I added the cached version of the article to the post. It should work...

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