Terry Francona finally pulled the trigger and moved Adrian Gonzalez to the outfield and got David Ortiz back into the lineup at first base. It didn’t help, as the Sox managed just one run – and that came on an RBI double from starting pitcher John Lackey – in a 2-1 loss in Philadelphia to the Phillies.

Phillies 2, Red Sox 1: Lackey pitches in, but Boston bats silent – Brian MacPherson has the Red Sox lineup again being shut down by the Phillies starter. More gamers from Scott Lauber | Peter Abraham | Sean McAdam | Tony Lee | Ron Chimelis | Gordon Edes

The two sides of John Lackey – Rob Bradford says that the perception of Lackey inside the Red Sox clubhouse is much different that the perception of it. McAdam has Lackey taking the hard luck loss last night. Peter Gammons had speculated on WEEI yesterday that Lackey might need Tommy John surgery. Edes has Lackey brushing off surgery talk following the game.

Big moves turned into no big deal – Nick Cafardo says that the moves of Gonzalez and Ortiz turned out to be inconsequential. John Tomase notes that the pair manages to survive in the field last night. Edes looks at Ortiz getting a rare start in the field.

Theo Epstein vows to do right by Sox on trade front – John Tomase has the Sox GM saying that he will do what it takes to improve this team at the deadline. Brian MacPherson has Epstein saying that the situation in right field will get better. Edes has the GM acknowledging that his team is not perfect, but will get better.

Low-scoring wins key to Sox future – McAdam says that the Red Sox need to find a way to win some low-scoring games.

‘Agonized’ Terry Francona needs perspective – Ron Borges blasts Terry Francona for using the word “agonized” in relation to his decision to move Gonzalez to the outfield. A typical din from Borges, as Francona is probably the most-grounded person in the Red Sox clubhouse.

Big paychecks have never made the players better – Bill Reynolds says that it is not the fault of J.D. Drew and John Lackey that they are being paid ridiculous amounts of money.

Epstein set to wheel, deal – The Globe notebook from Abraham has the GM vowing to be active up to the trading deadline. The Herald Red Sox Notebook reports that Clay Buchholz may not pitch again until after the All Star break. The Red Sox Journal has the Sox finding a way to get Ortiz and Gonzalez into the lineup. The CSNNE.com notes from McAdam has the lineup shift not paying off.

Celtics keep focus amid uncertainty – Steve Bulpett has the Celtics trying to go about their business with the lockout looming. From all indications, I will guess that there will not be an NBA season in 2011-2012.

Stakes high as NBA nears a lockout – Shira Springer has more on the labor situation.

Cloudy future for Glen Davis – Mark Murphy looks at an uncertain future for the Celtics free-agent forward.

Boston Bruins have salary cap space to spend on free agents, but talent is scarce – Mike Loftus says that the Bruins could make moves if they want to, but the free agent class is very thin.

Bruins: Chara probe not a big deal – Stephen Harris has the Bruins not worried about Zdeno Chara’s upcoming interview with Montreal police.

In defense of Max Pacioretty – Slow news day, DJ Bean?

For once, a Boston Tradition that lives up to the name – Jerry Thornton with a very good recap of The Tradition.

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16 thoughts on “Lineup Shift Can’t Lift Punchless Sox

  1. Funniest thing I heard today. John Lackey got angry in the postgame presser when someone asked him about Tommy John surgery and said "You keep throwing stuff against the wall and hope some of it sticks. That's straight made up".

    To which Gerry Callahan said "That's not a denial!". Umm, yeah it is, Gerry.

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  2. Is it me or is the Gonzales to right field hysteria a lot of much ado about nothing. Its not like the Sox took their best Defensive tackle and made him into a blocking back like the Patriots did with Richard Seymour. Its not like the Sox took their best defenseman and made him into a forward on powerplays like the Bruins did with Chara during the playoffs when they parked him in front of the net. Its not like the sox took their most efficient returner and slot receiver and turned him into a two way playing defensive back like the Patriots did with Troy Brown. All the Pats did was take a BASEBALL player and asked him to shag flies for 9 innings in the outfield. To hear media people like Tony Mazz talk about it you would think moving a superstar player between the outfield and first base has never happened in Boston (Yaz). You would also think it will mean the end of Gonzales ability to hit and play first. It is utter nonsense. The game is not that hard. Players move to different positions all the time…even good ones. Occasionally a position player pitches. Occasionally a Pitcher plays the outfield for a few innings. In this case a guy who has been playing baseball since he was a kid was asked to play right field for 9 innings. He got one attempt to field a ball and he did it cleanly. No freak play, no end of the world. I just do not understand why there was so much hysteria….unless all this talk of in Tito we trust from the media is non sense.

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    1. I wouldn't say it's much ado about nothing — but it's much ado about very, very little.

      There is a valid point to be made: is it worth making a guy who doesn't normally run (at all) run in the outfield, risking a muscle pull that could put him out of the lineup? And yeah, there's certainly a risk of injury when you take someone and put them in a position that requires a different level of physical output.

      But the risk with Gonzales is probably very slim — he's in good shape, he doesn't have a history of leg problems, and he isn't the type to be stupid about things (contra Jose Canseco, who would absolutely find a way to injure himself). I think there's a greater risk that Ortiz, with his questionable knees, would injure himself by playing first — and nobody seems to be talking much about that. Because it's not that great a risk.

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      1. Of course, this could all have been avoided if the Red Sox did not have three different pieces of dead weight in the outfield. (make that two with Cameron now gone). I agree you have to look at the risk, but the risks seem so minimal. If you are Francona, you could not continue to put out the various combos of Cameron, McDonald or Drew.

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  3. Two quick hitters:

    1) This will be a definite first for me, I read Mark Farinella's article in the Sun Chronicle and it was 'gulp' good. The writing on the Dodgers and Dale Arnold was very good.

    2) It is truly amazing how much better Scott Zolak sounds when Andy Gresh is not in the studio with him. Dan Roche is in for Gresh today and the talk is so much better with him on instead of the giant jaw-jacker.

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    1. In SAT terms, Gresh is to Zolak as doughnuts are to Homer Simpson, a camera phone is to Brett Favre and a microphone is to John Meterparel.

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  4. My favorite part about Mazz is that he says if Gonzalez plays in right field he doesn't want to see him overextend himself to make a play in the outfield.

    …the Sox ought to bring Manny out of retirement to coach Gonzo how to do that

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  5. Speaking of Mr. Mazz, he along with Felger spend most of their afternoon show complaining about Theo and ownership's lack of generally not offering 5+year contracts to the big free agent names (prior to this past offseason). Then on tonight's Baseball Reporters show, he nonchalantly tosses out a line like 'instead of offering seven years to Crawford, they could have offered a similar deal to Matt Holliday, and if that didn't work out, so what, they don't always work'. Wait, what???

    Dear mama flippin L0rd – I believe Mazz has officially cracked up. And with regards to critiquing all of Theo's moves, I'll be the first to say he hasn't batted 1.000…but at what point does slamming him for signings like Cameron become beating a dead horse?

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    1. When you think of all of the things that either Felger or Maz have either claimed or predicted, I honestly can't count the amount of times they have been wrong or wind up contradicting themselves. The two or three times they have been right, they will crow and yak about it for months, even years, later. In this case, Maz letting us all know how wrong Theo was with regards to Cameron. Thanks Maz, you genius, but the general public already knew that Cameron was a bad signing.

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      1. I put on 98.5 this afternoon and heard Tony Massarotti talking about how the Sox made a mistake in letting Jason Bay go to the Mets….I immediately changed the station.

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        1. Jason Bay hit a grand slam a couple of nights ago. The first good thing he has done since……. he was signed.

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      2. mandb another great point by you. The funny thing is that during that same conversation Mazz actually made 2 great points.

        1) That Theo's problem is that somewhere in their Sabrametric analysis they have evidence that player x that they covet has similar numbers to player Y who then blossomed. Therefore they assume player X will blossom the same way even though they do not look at the player's intangiables and "makeup"

        2) That a player with an OBP of 370 who hits .315 is a much better player than a player with an OBP .370 who hits .260. His argument is the same one I was making the other day here…that a player who walks a lot even though he is helping to wear down a pitcher…is also not aggressive in RBI situations. Mazz was specifically talking about JD drew who has a .370 OBP but has only scored or knocked in more than 90 runs once in the last 6 years. It was pretty interesting.

        Of course this is mediated by the shear idiocy of their Theo bashing and Tito second guessing.

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        1. I think sabermetrics are a valuable tool. But, I do not think they are the only thing. For whatever reason sabermetrics does not look at clutch situations and it devalues RBI's. Maz mentioned that there could be a chance that Beckett did not have the flu but a possible blister issue. He used good stats with regards to curveball pitches thrown in Beckett's last two starts. It was amazingly reasoned but it gets lost with the melodramatics he uses 95% of the time. Felger and Maz are lucky that Ordway's show has been so bad. I fully believe the day will come when the Big Show is gone and if the replacement has any talent they will beat F&M.

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  6. Part II of my post….

    There may be only one true solution to ridding ourselves of this type of sportsradio – build a time machine, go back to the mid-80s and stop the GM who created WFAN, thinking that 24 hours a day of sports talk a day was a good idea. Back in the days when there was only one or two shows that aired for a couple of hours in the early evening, it sure didn't feel as exasperating to listen.

    The greatest and yet cruelest irony of sports radio is that it's supposed to appeal to the most diehard of fans that enjoy sports, yet I feel the intent of many hosts is to suck the fun right out of it.

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    1. I understand and agree with your overall point, but 24 hour sports radio stations were inevitable. It's what the media has become in general. Every niche in entertainment being catered to with multiple channels (radio, TV, internet) that run 24 hours a day. And whenever that happens with any genre, you get a major watering down of the content provided.

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  7. Thanks for that link to the Jerry Thornton article…refreshingly good! (as compared to most of the drivel available from the usual suspects who pass for the media these days)

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