Tag Archives: Josh Reddick

The Grass Really is Greener on the other Side…

By Andy Lindberg

I love adventures, and any time I can couple an adventure with sports, it is the peak of the mountain for me.  This past week I decided to take an adventure to the West Coast, a place I had never even been close to.  From Sunday night, July 15 through Saturday night, July 21, I was in Oakland, CA devoting my time to rolling through the ‘hood and going to Oakland Athletics games.  I went to five A’s games, to be exact.

It didn’t take long for me to become enthralled with the atmosphere in the concrete monolith known as O.co Coliseum.  Never drawing large crowds, the passion for A’s baseball in Oakland is surprisingly palpable, made all the more entertaining for me by the fact that three ex-Red Sox make up the heart of the batting order.  Coco Crisp, Josh Reddick, and a resurgent Brandon Moss have become starting-nine staples on the east side of San Francisco Bay.

Brandon Moss has hit a single season high 11 home runs since joining Oakland

I was not once bored with watching the 2012 Athletics.  They’re exciting, likable, and can they ever come up with timely hits.  To this point in the season, the Oakland A’s have 11 walk-off hits.  Brandon Hicks and Brandon Moss both had walk-off hits (a home run and a single, respectively) while I was in O-Town.  For a team that is 51-44 on July 24, tied with the Los Angeles Angles of Anaheim (STILL the most absurd name in baseball) for the second AL Wild Card spot, the A’s sport a league-worst .228 batting average.  They are 27th in RBI with 344 and their batters have struck out 764 times, ninth most in baseball.

So why, pray tell, are the A’s a winning baseball team tied for a playoff spot in late July with a total payroll of  $54.5M?  The Red Sox are four games out of a wild card spot, yet have committed $173.2M to a team with a losing record (48-49) on July 24.

Along with timely hitting, the A’s have shown they can pitch, and pitch very well with young arms and an established bullpen.  Pitching wins, and it shows in Oakland and allows the A’s lineup to come up with timely hits and ease the pressure off of struggling hitters.  The A’s are fourth in baseball with a 3.37 ERA.  They have only allowed 769 hits (good for 4th in baseball), have only allowed 321 earned runs (also tied for 4th), have only allowed 77 home runs (good for sole possession of 4th), and have a WHIP of 1.23 (good for 3rd in baseball).  The A’s once again have a stockpile of young talent at the starting pitching position.

Twenty-five-year-old Tommy Milone is 9-6 with a 3.34 ERA and a 120 ERA+ (an ERA+ above 100 is considered above average).  Twenty-three-year-old Jarrod Parker is 7-4 with a 3.00 ERA and 133 ERA+.  Brandon McCarthy and Travis Blackley are both having exceptional years and 25-year-old Ryan Cook is enjoying his first All-Star season in the bullpen.

So what have the A’s done differently than Boston in order to win so much with a payroll roughly $120M LESS than the Red Sox’?  First and foremost, even with limited funding, the A’s have not pursued overhyped free agents nor have they committed to trading away young talent under team control for “win-now” rental players.

I think back on Theo Epstein’s tenure in Boston and yes, the man helped build a two-time World Championship team, but many of the moves he made were, for lack of a better word, atrocious.  Free agent pickups like Julio Lugo and John Lackey were and have been miserable.  One of the worst trades I can remember was trading outfielder David Murphy for Eric “Going, Going” Gagne in 2007.  Since 2007, Murphy has hit .280 in six years with Texas along with a .343 OBP and 106 OPS+ (again, above 100 is above average).  He has 66 home runs and 48 stolen bases.  After the trade, Murphy batted .343 for Texas for the rest of 2007.  Eric Gagne, however, went 2-2 for Boston with a 6.75 ERA in 20 games and was, mercifully, not a postseason-ender that year.  Carl Crawford is yet to be determined, but with how this season has gone and with rumors of Crawford being shopped for Hanley Ramirez, we can chalk that up to another poor Epstein move.

This offseason the A’s swapped outfielder Ryan Sweeney and closer Andrew Bailey to the Red Sox for outfielder Josh Reddick, a player I was screaming to keep knowing Crawford might not be 100% and also having that right-filed slot open.  To this point in the season Andrew Bailey hasn’t pitched in the big leagues due to a thumb injury and Ryan Sweeney has batted .267 with no home runs and 14 RBI.

Meanwhile, in Oakland, Josh Reddick has been taking baseballs to Pound Town.  While batting .271, Reddick has super-smashed 21 home runs and 19 doubles to go with 46 RBI.  Hmm, I see a discrepancy in production from Sweeney and Bailey in that trade…

Josh Reddick stares down a Roy Oswalt offering on Tuesday, July 17.

Let us not forget how the 2004 Red Sox came together as a team and gelled.  Their clubhouse chemistry was amazing.  This year, it is looking more like 25 players and 25 cabs.  In Oakland, the clubhouse chemistry could not be better.  Walk off’s are met with Reddick pies to the face and Gatorade baths.  The team fights for every run they can scrap.  The A’s are fun.  The Red Sox are likely done.

Maybe it’s time Goliath took a lesson from David…

Daily Noontime – August 8, 2011

Walking-off with a purpose!

Good Monday to everyone and yes, we’re back! Ha ha, we’re back and ready to roll! Here’s the Daily Noontime for Monday August 8, 2011, have a fantastic day! 

Headlines: 

* Sunday’s series finale between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees was an exciting one, as young Josh Reddick hit a walk-off single to win the game in the 10th inning.

* It’s official, Yankees manager/skipper, Joe Girardi has decided to bench catcher/designated-hitter, Jorge Posada.

* Good news for Philadelphia Eagles fans, as reports surfaced late Sunday about DeSean Jackson ending his holdout and returning to the gridion on Monday.

* Well, yet again, Tiger Woods didn’t win a golf tournament, but instead, Adam Scott won the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.

* Sunday was an exciting day for San Francisco Giants pitcher, Tim Lincecum, who ended the Philadelphia Phillies nine-game winning streak.

* Apparently the Atlanta Hawks will be sold, but will remain in Atlanta, Georgia, which does sound weird, right?

Games to Watch: 

* Boston at Minnesota (MLB) – 7:00pm eastern 

* Kansas City at Tampa Bay (MLB) – 7:10pm eastern

* Pittsburgh at San Francisco (MLB) – 10:15pm eastern 

Video of the Day: 

Yep, Josh Reddick stamped his name in the Sox-Yankees rivalry book! 

Paw Sox Honor Longest Game with a 3-2 Win against Syracuse

Umpire Dave Koza (left) and Denny Craig (right) were honored prior to the start of the game.

By Brian Willwerth 

PAWTUCKET, RI – On Monday night at McCoy Stadium, the Pawtucket Red Sox played a regular, nine-inning baseball game.  30 years ago that night, the PawSox played a game that lasted longer – much longer.

The team marked the 30th anniversary of the longest game ever played in professional baseball.

In 1981, the PawSox and Rochester Red Wings started a game that would last 33 innings, and wouldn’t even be completed until June 23rd. The home team eventually pulled out a 3-2 win.

During a special pre-game ceremony, the team honored two men who were there for that historic moment.  Denny Craig was the home-plate umpire on that night 30 years ago.  Monday night, he was back behind the plate again, waiting for a ceremonial first pitch thrown by Dave Koza.  It was Koza’s single in the 33rd inning that finally ended the epic clash.  Craig and Koza received a warm reception from the crowd of 5,350 – considerably larger than the number of people who attended that fateful night back in 1981, (a sellout crowd attended the conclusion of the game.)

Of course, there was a game to be played Monday night.  The PawSox earned their fourth straight victory, a 4-1 win over the Syracuse Chiefs.  Pawtucket got a strong outing from Matt Fox, who pitched six strong innings.  He only allowed one run – a long home run by Corey Brown over the centerfield wall in the second.  But that would be the Chiefs’ only run – and lead – of the night.

The PawSox came right back in the bottom of the inning with a pair of runs, highlighted by a tremendous home run to left off the bat of Tony Thomas.  The home team added three more runs in the third, two of them coming on Josh Reddick’s second home run of the season. After three innings, the PawSox held a 5-1 lead.

The scoreboard for the rest of the night would feature nothing but a bunch of zeros.  It was eerily similar to that night back in 1981 when there were many more goose eggs on the board.  But instead of ending two months later, the final out of Monday night’s game was recorded around the reasonable hour of 9 p.m.