The Teeth Grinders and Dodged Bullets of 2014

Boston Herald Staff Photo by Matt West.

Boston Herald Staff Photo by Matt West.

OK, I am going to do an experiment this baseball season.

You know, because my daily podcast and following Who Owns Baseball every single day JUST ISN’T ENOUGH!!

But I think it will be interesting to track something.

In 2009, 2010 and 2011, I followed the Red Sox day in and day out figuring out which games they pulled out from the fire and which games they blew. Essentially trying to figure out, as a fan, if they surprised us with victories or did they crush us more.

Did we finish more games feeling like our team dodged a bullet or grinding our teeth in frustration?

Essentially I wanted to be able to track a whole year, not just the end, and see which side the team fell to.

Surprisingly, in 2009, a year they went to the playoffs, they finished with a negative score. They blew games they had a chance to win more than they won games that seemed lost.

In 2010, a year they faded, the number was reversed. In 2011, when the Red Sox pulled one of the notorious belly flops in baseball history, the Red Sox won 48 games they could have lost and lost 46 they should have won.

They finished +2 in a year where they clearly fell apart.

I didn’t do it in 2012 because it was so clear early on that the team was not a contender.

I didn’t do it last year because, well, I had no expectations for the 2013 Red Sox.

I am doing it again this year. But I am doing it a little differently. I would love to see all 30 team’s Teeth Grinder and Dodged Bullet ratio. But even I don’t have THAT kind of stamina. A lot of this is emotion. It relies on the feeling you get when you think “This game is in the bag” or “This game is hopeless.” Tough to do for EVERY team.

BUT I am in the Bay Area for most of the baseball season. My father is a rabid Giants fan. I am surrounded by A’s fans. I can do those three teams effectively.

Three teams, the Giants, Red Sox and Athletics, all have post season aspirations this year.

Which team will make it? And which team will have the highest Dodged Bullet/Teeth Grinder average.

I might as well start, one game into it. Unlike PREVIOUS VERSIONS where I list every game, for this three team race, I will simply record the most recent game and the up to date standings. It will take up less room.

So after Game 1…



A’s blow a wonderful Sonny Gray performance by letting up 2 runs in the 9th and losing 2-0 to Cleveland. TEETH GRINDER

0 Dodged Bullets 1 Teeth Grinder




Giants overcome a 6-2 fifth inning hole to win the game with Posey’s 9th inning homer, 9-8, over Arizona. DODGED BULLET

1 Dodged Bullet 0 Teeth Grinder




Red Sox strand 11 and waste a solid Jon Lester start, 2-1 to the Orioles. TEETH GRINDER

0 Dodged Bullets 1 Teeth Grinder



So I am going to keep up this tally and see how three teams fare. What will it teach me? It will teach me that MAN I am spending a lot of time on the internet writing and recording about baseball!

91 thoughts on “The Teeth Grinders and Dodged Bullets of 2014

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