Sunday, August 17, 2008

Jays Win the Battle of the Birds

In this case, the Red Sox' bird is spelled with a 'y', as in Paul Byrd. Byrd made his debut for the Red Sox, and certainly did better than Clay Buchholz has been doing lately. While Byrd was no Jon Lester, he looked like a reliable 4th or 5th man in the rotation. His pitching repertoire is not overpowering, rarely touching 90 mph. He does not strike out a lot of batters, instead, he gets them out with ground outs and pop outs, keeping the batter off balance enough to keep balls from being hit too hard. That approach allows him, on good nights, to conserve pitches and go deeper into games.

Paul ByrdLast night, Byrd pitched into the 8th inning holding the Blue Jays to 4 runs. Not a bad outing, but Roy Halladay, pitching for Toronto, was in the midst of pitching a shutout. Halladay was on his game, and he is a workhorse. If he is pitching well, you have little hope of getting him out of the game and attacking the opposing team's bullpen. Halladay held on to the 4-0 shutout until the first batter of the 9th inning, Dustin Pedroia, sent the first pitch of the inning up into the Green Monster seats. Halladay managed to get the next three batters out to end the game for a final score of 4-1.

After the offensive barrage the Red Sox put on the Texas Rangers, it was no surprise that they would have an offensive letdown, especially against a "real" pitcher, like Roy Halladay. The loss did not harm the Red Sox in the AL East chase as the Rays also lost last night. The Yankees won, but there are more worrisome teams than the Yankees right now, particularly the White Sox and Twins, both team winning last night, and both of them now 1.5 games behind the Sox in the Wild Card standings.
Roy Halladay
But, with Josh Beckett taking the mound this afternoon on an extra day of rest, thanks to Friday's rain out, I like their chances to win this one!

(Photos Courtesy of ESPN)

1 comment:

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