Game #131 Lineups and Outlook
I tried to warn folks not to fall in love with Matt Andriese. His underlying numbers were edging in the wrong direction pretty much linearly as a starting pitcher, but they wanted to hold on to the initial impression. Last night was the nail in the coffin for those folks. I think Andriese could be very fine as a reliever. The type of guy that gets you 6-9 outs, preferably in low leverage. With his inability to hold runners you would prefer he starts innings, and there’s value in that, especially for league minimum. The problem is that he just doesn’t have enough of any one thing to be a starter. There is a lot to like, but there just isn’t enough of it. There is no harm in letting him finish the season out as one of the six starters, but the starting pitcher ship has sailed for next year, in my opinion.
I don’t see any value to be had in this game today as the line is pretty close to what I would expect. The Red Sox are a strong favorite for good reason. They’ve got a powerful lineup, and after a rough initial foray in the American League, Drew Pomeranz has re-established himself as a pretty good pitcher. He uses the straight fastball for called strikes and to set up the cutter that he is very good at burying inside on righties. When you think you have that figured out he uses his best pitch, the curve, to end the at bat. He’s good. Better than I expected. Add in that the Rays offense seems to come and go like the tide, and you’ve got yourself an ass-kicking on tap.
The Red Sox advantage continue in the pen where they have to legit closers and some other guys that can be effective when they are able to be used properly. Read: the starter goes deep and they only have to face same-handers. If the Rays have any chance today it will be by jumping all over Pomeranz early and taking advantage of every single mistake he presents. There might not be many, but in this park a big inning can really transform a game.