Saturday, May 26, 2012

Rebuilding For Success: Benchwarmer Baseball Week 1 & 2

The Savin Hill Sox got off to a hot start for the 2012 season with a three game sweep of the Georgetown Canal Mules. Jon Lester, R.A. Dickey, and Brandon McCarthy got the wins with strong pitching performances. The second half of the week didn’t go so well as the Sox got swept by the Generation of Heroes. Jon Lester picked up a loss to go to 1-1 while the other two losses were credited to the bullpen.

Week 1 Lineup: Coco Crisp OF – Ben Revere OF – Jamey Carroll DH – Joey Votto 1B – Nick Markakis OF – Jason Kipnis 2B – Erick Aybar SS – Brent Morel 3B – Crhis Iannetta C
Bench: Dan Murphy – Will Venable – Jed Lowrie – Nolan Reimold – Eduardo Nunez

The offense was led by Joey Votto (.364 - 3 RBI - 3 2B), Jason Kipnis (.250 - 6 RBI - 5 R - 2 HR – 1 3B), and Chris Iannetta (.176 – 5RBI - 2 HR).

Rotation: Jon Lester – R.A. Dickey – Brandon McCarthy – Bud Norris – Jeffrey Karstens
Spot: Andrew Miller – Felipe Paulino

The starting pitchers had a 2.20 ERA for the week in 6 quality starts and a 3-1 record. Jon Lester was the pitcher of the week with two quality starts including a one-run complete game to kick things off. For the week, he had a record of 1-1 with an ERA of 2.40 and WHIP of 0.933. Lester struck out 10 in 15 innings while walking 5.

Bullpen: Jonathan Papelbon – Brett Myers – Mike Adams – Kevin Gregg – Fernando Salas

Bullpen losses occur in Benchwarmer when your team loses, but your starting pitcher has good numbers. So, the two losses that the bullpen picked up for the week don’t reflect bad real world performances on their part. In fact, only three pitchers were needed out of the bullpen and their combined ERA for the week was 1.38. Brett Myers had 5 saves for the week with an ERA of 0.00 and WHIP of 1.00. Myers struck out an impressive 8 batters in 5 innings proving that Houston was correct in giving the closer job to him (especially with how bad Melancon has been, bet the Red Sox want Lowrie back). Papelbon had 3 saves with an ERA of 2.50. Mike Adams also pitched effectively for this strong bullpen.

Week 1: 3-3
Season: 3-3

Week 2 was a little rougher for the Sox as they were only able to tally two wins. R.A. Dickey picked up his second win of the season with another strong outing. Bud Norris went to 2-0 as well as he pitched just well enough for the offense to power the team to victory as they pounded out 15 hits and scored 7 runs.

Week 2 Lineup: Murphy 3B – Reimold OF – Iannetta C – Votto 1B – Markakis OF – Kipnis 2B – Aybar SS – Crisp OF – Carroll DH
Bench: Lowrie – Venable – Morel – Revere - Nunez

Nolan Reimold only played two games during the week, but he batted .444 with a home run which was the only one that the team hit all week. Dan Murphy, Erick Aybar, and Jason Kipnis all batted over .400 for the week while playing all six games. Kipnis had 3 stolen bases, hit a triple, and scored 5 runs to pace the team in those categories.

Rotation: Lester – Dickey – McCarthy – Norris – Karstens
Spot: Miller – Paulino

In a complete turn-around from the previous week, the team’s ERA for week 2 was 7.36 and the only quality start was turned in by R.A. Dickey in his first start of two on the week. Lester’s 7 runs in 2 innings was the worst of a bad week.

Bullpen: Papelbon – Myers – Adams – Franklin Morales – Salas

The front end of the bullpen had a strong week. Papelbon, Myers and Adams combined for 17 scoreless innings. Papelbon put up 5 saves in six games while striking out 6 in 6 IP. Myers picked up 2 saves in six games while striking out 8 in 6 IP and a WHIP of 0.00. Even with bad performances by Salas and Morales, the bullpen’s combined ERA for the week was 2.57.

Week 2 was the first week where I made any adjustments to my roster. I release Andrew Miller who was injured and down in Pawtucket and Fernando Salas who is a completely different pitcher than last year (currently 0-3 6.32 ERA – 2.04 WHIP and in the minors). To replace them, I picked up some bullpen help in Bryan Shaw (0-2 3.32 ERA – 5 Holds – 1.05 WHIP currently) and Robbie Ross (5-0 1.99 ERA – 0.88 WHIP – Can you say vulture?). The rebuilding continues.

Week 1: 3-3
Week 2: 2-4
Season: 5-7

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