Tell us your thought process, Yahoo Sports

Yahoo Sports lists the Top Batters on each team for each box score. Both the winning and the losing team gets to have a player highlighted.

I guess this is mainly for fantasy purposes.

But I found this entry to be a bit strange.
When Dallas Braden threw his perfect game on Sunday, Yahoo Sports dutifully picked a top batter for Tampa.

They picked Jason Bartlett… who like the rest of the team went 0-3.

So what was the thought process? Was his 0-3 a productive 0-3?
Were they happy he didn’t go 0-4?
He DID hit a line drive that was caught… were they giving him credit for actually hitting the ball hard AT someone?

Was it just that he was the lead off batter?

If anyone should have been the performer of the game it should have been Gabe Kapler who fouled off a bunch of pitches in the 6th.

Either way, I doubt there were a lot of people who own Jason Barlett in their fantasy league who looked at his line in the box score and said “YES!”

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So Ugly, Yet So Beautiful

The Red Sox did everything in their power to give this game to the Blue Jays.

They blew an early 4-0 lead. They kept hitting into routine double plays and they couldn’t score after the third inning, letting Toronto hang around trailing by a single run after the 5th.

But the Blue Jays can play the “No after you… I insist after you” game.

Some rancid defense, a bases loaded walk and a truly rotten start by Brandon Morrow made this a dodged bullet in the truest sense of the term.

And if the Angels can pull this one out tonight against Tampa (they are currently tied in the 9th) then the Sox would have gained a game on the Rays, Yankees AND Blue Jays.

It’s never too early to gaze at the standings.

Let’s update the tally.

DODGED A BULLET GAMES – 14

April 4 – 9-7 win against Yankees (On Opening Night, the Red Sox overcome a 5-1 Yankee lead with a game tying HR by Pedroia and a go ahead passed ball.)
April 10 – 8-3 win against Kansas City (Beckett out pitches Zack Greinke and nearly gets decapitated by a line drive.)
April 14 – 6-3 win in Minnesota. (Okajima gets Morneau to pop up with the bases loaded in the 7th and Papelbon wiggled out of a 9th inning jam.)
April 20 – 7-6 win against Texas. (Darnell McDonald introduces himself to Boston with an 8th inning game tying homer and a walk off hit in the 9th.)
April 21 – 8-7 win against Texas. (The Red Sox were down 4-0 early only to win it on Youk’s 2 out 11th inning double.)
April 23 – 4-3 win against Baltimore. (The Sox blow a 3-0 lead but win it on Adrian Beltre’s bases loaded walk.)
April 24 – 7-6 win against Baltimore. (The Red Sox score 6 in the 7th and hold off a late Baltimore comeback attempt.)
April 26 – 13-12 win at Toronto. (The Sox blow an early 5-0 lead but hang on for dear life in a slugfest.)
April 27 – 2-1 win at Toronto. (Buchholz holds the Jays down for 8 but it takes a bases loaded walk in the 8th to go ahead.)
April 28 – 2-0 win at Toronto. (Daniel Bard wiggles out of trouble in the 8th to help Lester shut down the Blue Jays and finish the sweep.)
May 4 – 5-1 win against the Angels. (Juan Rivera misplays Jeremy Hermedia’s 2 out flyball into a 3 run game winning double)
May 5 – 3-1 win against the Angels. (Papi and Beltre homer and the Sox hang on despite squandering many potential rallies.)
May 6 – 11-6 win against the Angels. (Dice-K puts the Red Sox in a 4-0 hole before they even bat. The Sox bats respond.)
May 10 – 7-6 win against the Blue Jays. (Sox blow an early 2-0 lead, take advantage of some errors and hang on.)
TEETH GRINDER GAMES – 9

April 6 – 6-4 loss against the Yankees. (Scutaro’s error leads to the winning run.)
April 7 – 3-1 loss against the Yankees. (Sox leave the winning run on in the 9th only to lose on Granderson’s 10th inning homer)
April 9 – 4-3 loss in Kansas City. (Bard coughs up the lead, denying Wakefield a win.)
April 17 – 3-1 loss to Tampa Bay. (The Sox can’t score with the bases loaded and nobody out in the 11th… lost it in the 12th.)
April 17 – 6-5 loss to Tampa Bay. (The Red Sox comeback falls a run short, leaving two on in the 8th)
April 25 – 7-6 loss to Baltimore. (The Sox blow a 4-1 lead, leave the winning run on second in the 9th, let up 3 in the 10th and could only score 2 in the bottom of the 10th)
April 30 – 5-4 loss in Baltimore. (Tejada ties the game with a 2 out 8th inning homer and wins it with a bloop in the 10th)
May 1 – 12-9 loss in Baltimore. (Dice-K and Wakes get pounded, wasting 2 homers from Ortiz and an early 4-1 lead.)
May 2 – 3-2 loss in Baltimore. (Varitek is thrown at home trying to score with 2 outs in the 8th. Sox get swept in the 10th.

+5!

The season seems like one disappointment after another, and yet they have had 5 more surprising wins than crushing defeats.

Man this game sometimes doesn’t make any sense.

Dice-K tomorrow.
(As for right now, it is still tied at 4 in Anaheim.)

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I know what you are doing, Tyler Clippard

You can fool most of the people, but you can’t fool ole’ Sully.

Clippard blew a save the other day but the Nationals rallied the next inning and he got the win.
Funny… he did the EXACT SAME THING the day before.

That’s right, he got two wins this weekend, all the while posting a microscopic ERA (0.76) and batting average against (.158.)

And now he is being mentioned in some elite company this year. In this season that is filled with Cy Young contenders in the National League, guess which three pitchers are tied for the league lead in Wins?

Roy Halladay and Ubaldo Jimenez each have 6 as you would expect with their Cy Young caliber starts. But who also has 6?

Tim Lincecum? Nope.
Adam Wainwright? Nope.
Barry Zito? Nope.
Johan Santana? Nope.

That would be Tyler Clippard.

He’s got 6 wins and zero losses…

Going into this year the only thing I knew about Tyler Clippard was he won a game for the Yankees against the Mets in the Subway Series…

And that all of humanity was spared hearing John Sterling call him “The Yankee Clippard” for year after year.

But now here he is being the ultimate scavenger.

What if he has 14 more instances in the rest of the year like he did twice this weekend?

What if he becomes a 20 game winner? Does he get included in the Cy Young discussion?

So THAT’S his plan!

He wants to be a Cy Young contender because he’s convinced all the voters just look at win totals.

What if it happens 35 more times in the next 4 1/2 months?

Then he will tie a once thought unbreakable record of 41 wins of Jack Chesbro who did it for the 1904 New York Highlanders (Now the Yankees.).
(Can you imagine winning 41 games in a season?)

Well the only way it ever could be broken is by a vulture reliever like Clippard… blowing games and then picking up the win with an inning of work… 42 times to the record book.

42 times to immortality.

It’s a brilliant plan.

It’s diabolical.

I am on to you, Clippard.

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