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PeteWard
09-02-2011, 06:34 AM
The Sox have reached THE pivotal point in what has been a frustrating season. Many of you think that time has past. You may be right.

Watching the Tigers pitching vs KC has raised my optimism level though. Ordonez is heating up which makes a good hitting line-up even more formidable but they look so very, very beatable.

What do the Sox need to do? Losing the series will be the absolute end, but do they need to sweep or is 2 out of 3 good enough at this point?

LITTLE NELL
09-02-2011, 07:13 AM
We have 6 left with the Tigers, we need 2 out of 3 in Motown and a sweep when they come to Chicago in 10 days.

Zakath
09-02-2011, 07:35 AM
We have 6 left with the Tigers, we need 2 out of 3 in Motown and a sweep when they come to Chicago in 10 days.

Sounds about right, as that would erase 4 games of the 5.5 game deficit.

Other than that, we're going to need some help from the scrubs of the American League (Oakland and Baltimore) to take some games from the Tigers. Detroit goes better than .500, and it's almost impossible to catch them.

Bucky F. Dent
09-02-2011, 08:53 AM
5.5 down with 28 games left. We need this series, if not a sweep!

SI1020
09-02-2011, 08:56 AM
Two out of three keeps faint hope alive. Anything less means it's over.

Chez
09-02-2011, 09:13 AM
The Tigers bullpen has been leaky lately. Albequerque returns early next week (which will help them). Valverde is the shakiest 40 for 40 in the history of 40 for 40's! Sox bullpen is deeper and more effective than the Tigers'. I think the key is for our starters to keep the game close and then pound Detroit's bullpen in the 7th and 8th innings.

PeteWard
09-02-2011, 09:21 AM
The Tigers bullpen has been leaky lately. Albequerque returns early next week (which will help them). Valverde is the shakiest 40 for 40 in the history of 40 for 40's! Sox bullpen is deeper and more effective than the Tigers'. I think the key is for our starters to keep the game close and then pound Detroit's bullpen in the 7th and 8th innings.

If it gets close, I think Valverde will choke big time,

russ99
09-02-2011, 09:21 AM
Gotta set the tone tonight early vs. Verlander, since we let him off the hook last time.

The pressure is a lot more on them than us.

How strange is it that I have more confidence in the Sox offense vs. Cy shoo-in Verlander than in the next two games vs. notorious soft tosser Brad Penny and then Scherzer who always seems to pitch well against us?

amsteel
09-02-2011, 09:28 AM
My honest opinion is that the Sox will cave big time in these high leverage games. Clearly I would love to see them win all 6, but this isn't 2005, or even 2008. Have they shown at any point this year they can come through in the clutch over a period of 2-5 games?

Given, the transfusion of youth in the recent weeks has given the team a different dimension, but for as good as Dayan and Alejandro have been Dunn and Rios have been just as bad. And we all know OG's proclivity for continuing to play the vets over the new guys.

doublem23
09-02-2011, 09:30 AM
The pressure is a lot more on them than us.

:rolling:

What? We can't afford 1 mistake this weekend. Even if we take 2 of 3 from them this weekend, we're still facing a steep climb uphill. 4.5 games is quite a bit to make up over 25. And that is before you consider the fact that 10 of the Tigers' last 13 games against the A's, Royals, and Orioles who second-to-last, last, and last in their divisions respectively.

I'm not trying to be pessimistic. Hell, quite the opposite, let's just enjoy these games, root hard for the Sox, and not worry about all the rest of the stuff, because, really, unless we win at least 5-6 of the last 6 games against the Tigers, it doesn't really matter, anyway.

Chez
09-02-2011, 09:39 AM
I'm sure fans of all 2d and 3d place teams do this, but this is the time of the year when I always look back and think if we had just won half of all those games we let slip away in April and May . . . Argh!

hawkjt
09-02-2011, 10:02 AM
I am focused on the loss column. Sox take 2 of 3 and they are 3 back in the loss column. Then they go to Minny,while the Tigers go to the Tribe. Pick up a game in the loss column next week,and when the Tigers come to Chicago, Sox pick up another. That leaves them 1 back in the loss column with 14 to play. Lose one less than the Tigers over that 14 games and we have that familiar scenario...one game playoff, in Chicago.

It has to start this weekend. I am braced for the strong possibility of losing tonite,but I like the pitching matchups on Sat and Sun.

As for tonite, Johnny has to be very good,obviously,and I hope that Ozzie has Dayan at DH with DeAza,Rios,and Juan in the outfield. No margin for error or experiments anymore,Oz. Dunn just cannot catch up to Verlanders heat...simply way too many holes in his swing for a guy who can heat him up upstairs,or drop that breaking ball on him.

With three rightys on the mound for the Tigers this weekend,this will test Ozzies resolve in terms of his propensity to match up lefty vs righty. Maybe Dunn can play vs Penny,who he has seen a lot in the NL?

Just keep in mind,in 2009, the Tigers blew a 3 game lead with 4 to play....so anything can happen if you hang around.

dwitt76
09-02-2011, 10:17 AM
If it gets close, I think Valverde will choke big time,

He is overdue for a BS

enurb
09-02-2011, 10:25 AM
If Rios bats 4th again, it will be upsetting.

kaufsox
09-02-2011, 10:29 AM
The Sox lose this series and it's over. Beating Verlander will be tough, so Saturday and Sunday are the money games. Of course the way the Sox have been in big series in recent years, I'm already nervous.

Dick Allen
09-02-2011, 10:32 AM
Responding to the original question, I choose the latter.

blandman
09-02-2011, 10:38 AM
Do we need a sweep? Not necessarily, but probably.

Will we sweep? Without a doubt. :gulp:

PeteWard
09-02-2011, 10:48 AM
My honest opinion is that the Sox will cave big time in these high leverage games. Clearly I would love to see them win all 6, but this isn't 2005, or even 2008. Have they shown at any point this year they can come through in the clutch over a period of 2-5 games?

Given, the transfusion of youth in the recent weeks has given the team a different dimension, but for as good as Dayan and Alejandro have been Dunn and Rios have been just as bad. And we all know OG's proclivity for continuing to play the vets over the new guys.

The sweep at Fenway when things were going sour was pretty good.

doublem23
09-02-2011, 10:49 AM
Do we need a sweep? Not necessarily, but probably.

Will we sweep? Without a doubt. :gulp:

I'll agree to that. :cheers:

amsteel
09-02-2011, 10:50 AM
Will we sweep? Without a doubt. :gulp:

I like it.

At the beginning of the season if someone asked what's more unlikely, the Sox sweeping a series in Minny, or sweeping a series in DET with the division on the line, I would have said option A, so anything is possible.

Sure, the Twins are more terrible than anyone could have imagined, but hope has to spring from somewhere.

chisoxfanatic
09-02-2011, 10:55 AM
Sox vs. Verlander tonight is going to probably be ugly. I'm expecting the worst. I'm kind of glad that I will have to follow this one from my cell phone.

I honestly think that winning 5 of the remaining 6 with these guys isn't going to be enough. Losing that game on Wednesday really hurt!

amsteel
09-02-2011, 11:12 AM
Sox vs. Verlander tonight is going to probably be ugly. I'm expecting the worst.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/DET/DET201107150.shtml

He's been on fire since then, but it could happen.

CHISOXFAN13
09-02-2011, 11:16 AM
Sox vs. Verlander tonight is going to probably be ugly. I'm expecting the worst. I'm kind of glad that I will have to follow this one from my cell phone.

I honestly think that winning 5 of the remaining 6 with these guys isn't going to be enough. Losing that game on Wednesday really hurt!

I still think it was a mistake for Leyland to push him back. The Tigers win that game yesterday with Verlander starting and move a step closer to clinching.

With Danks on the mound, there's no guarantee Verlander wins this game.

Huge, huge game.

beasly213
09-02-2011, 11:21 AM
The Tigers have a history of falling apart in September. Even in 2006 when they went to the World Series they blew their division lead and won the Wild Card.

DirtySox
09-02-2011, 11:21 AM
Tigers win 2 of 3.

doublem23
09-02-2011, 11:39 AM
Sox vs. Verlander tonight is going to probably be ugly. I'm expecting the worst. I'm kind of glad that I will have to follow this one from my cell phone.

Uh, the Sox have done historically well against Verlander, much better than most other AL teams have done, including his last loss to this point, that game on July 15th when we tagged him for 5 runs in 6 innings. For whatever reason, as a Sox fan, I certainly don't view Verlander as completely unbeatable. We just match up well against him or something, I guess.

I agree with CHISOXFAN13. Ballsy move by Leyland to push him back a day. If the Sox beat Verlander tonight, then it's a huge mistake, as the Tigers probably would have won yesterday with Verlander starting instead of 20-year-old rookie. You can't be losing game to the Royals when you're trying to close out a division title.

fram40
09-02-2011, 11:56 AM
I still think it was a mistake for Leyland to push him back. The Tigers win that game yesterday with Verlander starting and move a step closer to clinching.

With Danks on the mound, there's no guarantee Verlander wins this game.

Huge, huge game.

I like the matchup - Danks can match Verlander and Sox win it late versus a crappy bullpen. I think the pitching worked out very well - Danks, Floyd and Buehrle lined up, rested and ready to go.

Hard to believe the Sox can get within one loss this weekend.

Let's go Sox!!

cards press box
09-02-2011, 12:04 PM
I still think it was a mistake for Leyland to push him back. The Tigers win that game yesterday with Verlander starting and move a step closer to clinching.

With Danks on the mound, there's no guarantee Verlander wins this game.

Huge, huge game.

I was thinking that, too. For one game, Danks could certainly match Verlander. Would anybody be that surpised, for example, if the Sox and Tigers are tied in the late innings of this ballgame?

Soxman219
09-02-2011, 12:28 PM
Don't forget the Indians! Both Sox and Tigers still gotta play the Indians who are just as in it as they are. Tigers still gotta play Leaveland 8 more times while us 7. They are also gonna play to win. Sweep the Tigers this weekend and Indians sweep the Royals, then we got a 3-team race.

These games are important, but they ain't exactly do or die.

hawkjt
09-02-2011, 12:33 PM
Verlander's ERA vs the Sox this year - 4.20
Danks ERA vs the Tigers this year- 1.33

Verlanders ERA the last 7 games in 2011- 2.79
Danks ERA the last 7 games in 2011- 2.39

Danks lifetime ERA vs the Tigers is solid also...better than Verlanders lifetime vs the Sox.

Looking for an old-fashioned pitchers duel tonite.
AJ might be back in the lineup tonite,also, giving the Sox another lefty.

blandman
09-02-2011, 12:36 PM
We're going to win three blowouts this weekend, I can feel it. It'll be enough to send the Tigers reeling the rest of the season.

Interest note - we've got 24 games left against the AL Central, and they're our next 24. There isn't a game in that stretch we aren't capable of winning. I feel a REALLY big month coming. 20-4 in that stretch.

Soxman219
09-02-2011, 12:39 PM
We're going to win three blowouts this weekend, I can feel it. It'll be enough to send the Tigers reeling the rest of the season.

Interest note - we've got 24 games left against the AL Central, and they're our next 24. There isn't a game in that stretch we aren't capable of winning. I feel a REALLY big month coming. 20-4 in that stretch.

I hope so, all these remaining teams are beatable. It's up to the Sox now to play to their full potential.

hawkjt
09-02-2011, 12:51 PM
I hope so, all these remaining teams are beatable. It's up to the Sox now to play to their full potential.

My main concern is the #4 and #5 starting postions . Humber has faded,Peavy is fading,and Stewart is unproven. If 2 of the 3 can right their ship, Sox will have a chance.

Nelfox02
09-02-2011, 01:09 PM
Two out of three keeps faint hope alive. Anything less means it's over.


Exactly my thoughts.....

pudge
09-02-2011, 02:00 PM
We're going to win three blowouts this weekend, I can feel it. It'll be enough to send the Tigers reeling the rest of the season.

Interest note - we've got 24 games left against the AL Central, and they're our next 24. There isn't a game in that stretch we aren't capable of winning. I feel a REALLY big month coming. 20-4 in that stretch.

There should be teal all over this post.

blandman
09-02-2011, 02:18 PM
There should be teal all over this post.

You won't be saying that a month from now.

soltrain21
09-02-2011, 02:27 PM
Tigers will win the first two, and the Sox will destroy them in the third game. Making me of all the more pissed off.

Falstaff
09-02-2011, 02:35 PM
If Rios bats 4th again, it will be upsetting.
Ya I keep having nightmares where Ozzie leaves Dunn out of the starting lineup so we have chance to win. But then uses him to pinch hit at the most crucial time each game;:o: inserts Dunn to hit for Paulie or something.

hawkjt
09-02-2011, 02:36 PM
Tigers starting lineup:

Jackson cf
Ordonez rf
Young lf
Cabrera 1b
Martinez Dh
Peralta ss
Avila c
Santiago 2b
Inge 3b

Verlander p.

Tough right-handed lineup vs Johnny D.
If the Tigers win this thing,it will be due to Verlander and their hitting.
Sox need both to go cold.

Aesero
09-02-2011, 02:40 PM
If Rios bats 4th again, it will be upsetting.

Skanberg's latest sums it up well.

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6210/6105217318_121759b007_b.jpg

http://smellslikemascot.blogspot.com/

fram40
09-02-2011, 02:40 PM
We're going to win three blowouts this weekend, I can feel it. It'll be enough to send the Tigers reeling the rest of the season.

Interest note - we've got 24 games left against the AL Central, and they're our next 24. There isn't a game in that stretch we aren't capable of winning. I feel a REALLY big month coming. 20-4 in that stretch.

nothing like optimism. I don't see that too often from Sox fans. I agree though - I see a 20 - 8 finish. Does 88 wins take the division?

blandman
09-02-2011, 02:50 PM
nothing like optimism. I don't see that too often from Sox fans. I agree though - I see a 20 - 8 finish. Does 88 wins take the division?

Unless the bulk of those 8 are losses directly to the Tigers, I'd assume so.

blandman
09-02-2011, 02:51 PM
Ya I keep having nightmares where Ozzie leaves Dunn out of the starting lineup so we have chance to win. But then uses him to pinch hit at the most crucial time each game;:o: inserts Dunn to hit for Paulie or something.

If he pinch hit Dunn for Paulie, I'd be calling for his head.

blandman
09-02-2011, 02:52 PM
Tigers starting lineup:

Jackson cf
Ordonez rf
Young lf
Cabrera 1b
Martinez Dh
Peralta ss
Avila c
Santiago 2b
Inge 3b

Verlander p.

Tough right-handed lineup vs Johnny D.
If the Tigers win this thing,it will be due to Verlander and their hitting.
Sox need both to go cold.

Danks owns that lineup. So does Gavin. I'm not worried this weekend.

doublem23
09-02-2011, 02:53 PM
nothing like optimism. I don't see that too often from Sox fans. I agree though - I see a 20 - 8 finish. Does 88 wins take the division?

Tigers would need to go 12-13 or worse.

chisoxfanatic
09-02-2011, 02:56 PM
http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/DET/DET201107150.shtml

He's been on fire since then, but it could happen.
I just don't see Verlander having a 2nd meltdown against us.

fram40
09-02-2011, 02:59 PM
I just don't see Verlander having a 2nd meltdown against us.

we don't need a meltdown. How about two home runs - a solo shot from PK and a two run shot from De Aza (maybe a two run triple) .

Danks shuts down the Tigers and Santos gets the save. Sox win 3 - 1.

doublem23
09-02-2011, 03:07 PM
I just don't see Verlander having a 2nd meltdown against us.

We don't need a meltdown, Danks has been on an even better roll than Verlander over the past 6 or so weeks, a 3-2 or 2-1 win would be fine with me.

Over Verlander's career, only 1 team has given him more problems than us (Cleveland).

blandman
09-02-2011, 03:07 PM
Tigers would need to go 12-13 or worse.

If we take care of business, that's 12-7 against everyone else.

blandman
09-02-2011, 03:08 PM
We don't need a meltdown, Danks has been on an even better roll than Verlander over the past 6 or so weeks, a 3-2 or 2-1 win would be fine with me.

Over Verlander's career, only 1 team has given him more problems than us (Cleveland).

We're going to win 6-0.

doublem23
09-02-2011, 03:09 PM
If we take care of business, that's 12-7 against everyone else.

They do have an awful lot of ****ty teams left on their schedule, but it's a beautiful day and long weekend coming up so I'm all for optimism right now. Tonight's the first night on the road to October. :praying:

Procol Harum
09-03-2011, 09:59 AM
Danks owns that lineup. So does Gavin. I'm not worried this weekend.

Danks sure pitched like he owned their lineup--and was trying to boost their investment value.... :wink:

Tragg
09-03-2011, 12:16 PM
Well today and tomorrow are pretty much the last stand, realistically. We'll see.