Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Game 32 - Red Sox

Indians 10, Red Sox 6
Record: 19-13

This morning brings news that the Sox have demoted B.H. Kim from the rotation, fast on the heels of his second consecutive subpar outing. After watching him pitch last night, I'm in wholehearted agreement with the decision.

I've swallowed the Kool-Aid parcelled out by sabermetric-minded Sox fans (mostly of the SOSH persuasion), and believe that Kim has the potential to be a highly successful starting pitcher. But even my untrained eye notes with alarm that his pitches aren't moving, his velocity is down, and he's having trouble finding the strike zone. On top of that, he frequently looks peevish and fidgety - not exactly the picture of confidence. This Sox team only has room for one headcase starting pitcher, and Derek Lowe's filling that role.

Bronson Arroyo moves back into the rotation, and Kim becomes a long reliever, which will give him a chance to stretch out his arm over time, regain his confidence, and get back to being the pitcher many people believe will make the difference this season. That, or we'll realize he's hurt and won't ever reach his potential.

I'm reverting to Bad Sox Fan so far this season - prone to profane outbursts when things aren't going well, and wandering away from the good feelings of the Era of Positivity. A 4-5 record against Cleveland and Kansas City will do that. More than the record, though, is the fact that this team hasn't yet had the moment that makes me believe unequivocally. To be fair, last year's team didn't have it until September 1, when Trot Nixon's grand slam beat the Phillies, so they've got time. I'm still highly confident in this team, but they've got to start winning the ones they should win.

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