Friday, August 15, 2003

Showdown - The Boston Red Sox vs. the Oakland A's

The Red Sox resurrected the hopes of a Red Sox Nation already prepared for yet another August collapse, coming back to take the final two games of the series vs. Oakland. Two weeks removed from the trading deadline, all American League fans are surprised that not much has changed:

The Yankees still have a small lead over the Sox.
The Mariners have maintained the distance between them and the A's.
It's still Royals, White Sox, Twins in the Central.
The Red Sox are still a game up on the A's in the wildcard.

Wasn't something supposed to happen? Weren't the A's, with the addition of Rich Harden to their rotation, supposed to blow past the Mariners and Sox with another twenty-game winning streak? Weren't the Sox and Yankees supposed to take off with their new-fangled bullpens? Weren't Gillick's non-trading Mariners supposed to fade? And the Royals STILL haven't collapsed?!

I'm only going to look at the wildcard race today. After playing to a four-game 14-14 tie, The A's and Red Sox sure look like they are going to battle to the end with this one. There's a quarter of the season left, and I thought I'd take a look at the schedules the rest of the way.

Here they are, head to head:

Boston at Seattle, Toronto at Oakland - Edge Oakland
Oakland at Boston - I've got a ticket for this one, baby. We'll call it even.

Seattle at Boston(going to this, too!), Oakland at Toronto - Edge Oakland. The Jays are done.
Toronto at Boston, Baltimore at Oakland - Toronto is better on the road than at home. Edge Oakland.

Uh-Oh.

Yankees at Boston, Tampa Bay at Oakland - Edge Oakland, dammit.
Boston at Philly(1 game) and the White Sox (2 games), Oakland at Baltimore - sigh. Edge Oakland.
Boston at Baltimore, Anaheim at Oakland - Baltimore has a winning record at home. Edge Oakland.

Well, it gets better from here, at least.

Chicago at Boston, Oakland at Texas - even though Chicago is still in it they've been terrible on the road. We'll give this one to the Sox.

Tampa at Boston, Oakland at Anaheim - Edge Sox.
Boston at Cleveland, Seattle at Oakland - Edge Sox.

Baltimore at Boston, Texas at Oakland - We'll call it even.
Boston at Tampa, Seattle at Oakland - Edge Sox.

So, if I'm reading this right, what should happen is that sometime in the next month, the A's will take the benefit of an easier schedule and pass the Sox. But then in the last two weeks of the season, the Sox will put on a frenetic rally, and nip the A's at the wire.

Just like they always do.

BAP Scores -

Toronto 5 Seattle 2
BAP - Tor .639, Sea .447
OPS - tor .792, Sea .603

Boston 4 Oakland 2 from Tim at Musings from RSN


BAP/OBP/SLG
Bos .634/.268/.353
Oak .488/.279/.237
The Sox bullpen comes through!


The Standings:

BAP 24-4
OPS 22-6

Dave's Email

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