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Jeff

Red Sox open their season tonight!

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Jeff   

In about 4 hours I'll be turning on the first Red Sox game of the season. I'm pretty much a diehard; not quite as much as those sickos on display in The Boston Red Sox movie, the kind who would trade their wife and kids for a front-row ticket to a game. But I'd say last year I watched at least two or three games a week and I am very much into the stats, players, etc. I try to make a point of getting up to Fenway to see a game in person at least once a year.

The question is: will even big-time Sox fans still tune in as frequently and passionately now that the Sox have brought it home? I'm thinking that there will be a bit of a drop in game attendance and T.V. ratings. Maybe only a slight drop, but still.

Nevertheless, it'll be priceless when we raise that World Series banner at the 2004 Home Opener, right before the visiting Yankees' eyes! tongue.gifdevil.gif

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This is worth sharing because.....?

Go Braves. Go Tigers (11-2! Home opener.) menacegrin.gif

Edited by Rich Kennedy

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Andrew   

Ouch, that's harsh! Can't you let me enjoy the single week of the season where the O's have a shot at maintaining a .500 winning percentage?

Edited by Andrew

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Things went well for my team, the Cubs, as well. They beat the Diamondbacks 16-6. The only sore spot is Carlos Zambrano getting ejected (after pitching poorly, given his potential).

Keep an eye on Zambrano, I've been making the prediction that he'll pitch either a no-hitter or a perfect game this season.

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Jeff   

Argh, David Wells was awful Sunday night. dry.gif We should've resigned Derek Lowe. The Yank's won 9-2, and Randy Johnson pitched as well as ever.

I do think Zambrano will have a good year. I believe the Sox made a run at him in the off-season, but it didn't work out for us unfortunately.

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Ann D.   

Tonight's the first night for the Cardinals. w00t.gif Here's hoping they have as good a year as last, but with a better finish!

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Argh, David Wells was awful Sunday night.  dry.gif We should've resigned Derek Lowe. The Yank's won 9-2, and Randy Johnson pitched as well as ever.

Wells did very well pitching for the Yankees Sunday night. Doesn't matter what uni he's wearing, he's a Yankee at heart.

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Mark   
The question is: will even big-time Sox fans still tune in as frequently and passionately now that the Sox have brought it home? I'm thinking that there will be a bit of a drop in game attendance and T.V. ratings. Maybe only a slight drop, but still.

Jeff, my boss last year posed this same theory - that the Sox allure was forever damaged by their win, and attendance would dwindle away to nothin'.

'Course, he's from St. Louis, so that might've been the sour grapes talking. 1st.gif

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Jeff, my boss last year posed this same theory - that the Sox allure was forever damaged by their win, and attendance would dwindle away to nothin'.

'Course, he's from St. Louis, so that might've been the sour grapes talking.  1st.gif

I don't believe this for a minute. No offense, but Cubs and Red Sox fans have always appeared a bit lemming-like to me. With the Sox, there will be much wailing and knashing of teeth over the sudden embarassment of riches and how different that feeling is. All at the ballpark.

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Mark   
Jeff, my boss last year posed this same theory - that the Sox allure was forever damaged by their win, and attendance would dwindle away to nothin'.

'Course, he's from St. Louis, so that might've been the sour grapes talking.

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Jeff   
We'll also go back to whining as soon as we have a crappy season - and start reminiscing about the boys of '04.

I'm already getting whiny. angry.gif Two games back as of today, and counting...And Curt Schilling still on the DL.

Still, last year was worth it. smile.gif

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You guys have nothing to worry about. Epstein is your MVP. If you are dragging at the All Star break, but still in sight of contention, you'll have a new team by the trading deadline. That's how Beane does it in Oakland and Theo learned from the master.

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Darren H   

Born and bred an Orioles fan, but it's been really hard for me to care at all about the team during the last few seasons. Signing Albert Belle in '99 then allowing Mike Mussina to go to the Yankees in '01 -- those two moves hurt me more than Ripken's retirement.

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Andrew   

All right! Another O's fan! Are you originally from Baltimore, too, Darren?

I agree with your sense of discouragement about the O's, too - Peter Angelos sure knows how to alienate good baseball people and blow a lot of money on over-the-hill talent.

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Andrew   

Yep, a formidable lineup - alas, no pitching.

I won't be surprised with 3rd place in the AL East, but I can't see them topping NYY or Boston.

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Darren H   

I grew up in Annapolis and have fond childhood memories of watching Jim Palmer, Eddie Murray, Rick Dempsey, Al Bumbry, Tippy Martinez, Scottie McGregor, and, of course, Cal Ripken and Earl Weaver at Memorial Stadium. Good times.

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Andrew   

Very cool, Darren - I have fond memories of that same era; my father was an active volunteer within the O's organization, so we went to many games each year.

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I wonder how the Orioles will do in the AL East overall this year. You guys have Sammy Sosa now, right?

Might Sosa be a bit "deflated" now, though? wondering how his stats will do this year.

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Clint M   

So glad to see my Cincinnati Reds win their first three games (and then lose the next three shocking.gif). Sounds about right, sadly.

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A question for you Red Sox fans: How many walks per game so far? I wonder if Epstein is forcing the patience-at-the-plate principle. This is important for Moneyball teams. Waiting out a pitcher ups his pitch count as well as gives a batter something closer to even odds of waiting for his pitch (or at least not going for pitches he knows he won't hit, even if they are strikes). Low walk totals might mean coming discipliary action or a lineup shuffle.

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Jeff   
A question for you Red Sox fans: How many walks per game so far?

I don't know any exact numbers, but we have drawn a fair number of walks. We have a lot of players (Mueller, Bellhorn, Nixon, and Ramirez, Varitek and Ortiz to some extent) who are just naturally patient hitters.

As for a lineup shuffle, well, we've already seen a bit of shuffling even though we're still very early in the schedule. We did the same thing last year. Nixon has been sharing right field with Jay Payton (Payton hits lefties well), and I believe we started some prospect at shortstop a few nights ago.

Right now I'm pretty impressed with our batting order. Renteria, Mueller, Nixon, and Bellhorn can really hit in any slot, and we have Ramirez and Ortiz at 3 and 4 as usual. Last night's game was sweet (8-5 over the Yankees). biggrin.gif

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I don't know any exact numbers, but we have drawn a fair number of walks. We have a lot of players (Mueller, Bellhorn, Nixon, and Ramirez, Varitek and Ortiz to some extent) who are just naturally patient hitters.

And if any are on board since Henry/Epstein, they were acquired for their patience. That Nixon is a good fielder is icing on the cake. Henry's goal is the A's with a big budget.

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