Game 18: Orioles at Red Sox

This time I’m starting off with it… Save us Brian Matusz, you’re our only hope! He has 100% of the Orioles’ victories thus far, and is the team’s best chance for a W right now. The O’s will need to score some runs off of John Lackey though.

Sox line-up:

Bat Pos Batting Def
Scutaro, Marco R SS .270/.352/.333 -1.2
Pedroia, Dustin R 2B .271/.302/.322 0.8
Martinez, Victor S DH .262/.318/.377
Youkilis, Kevin R 1B .234/.333/.438 -1.1
Lowell, Mike R 3B .300/.391/.450 0.7
Varitek, Jason S C .316/.350/.895 -2
Hall, Bill R RF .188/.381/.188 -0.4
Hermida, Jeremy L LF .270/.308/.595 2.3
McDonald, Darnell R CF .375/.545/1.125 -1

Lackey:

K/9 BB/9 HR/9 GB rate FIP^ xFIP^
4.5 3.9 0.6 45.3% 4.35 5.24

That 5 year, $85.2 M contract isn’t quite paying off yet.

His stuff^:

Looks like Lackey is going with the cut fastball much more this season, at the expense of his fastball and slider. It also looks like he’s getting more sink on his fastballs than he did last year, even if it hasn’t resulted in any more groundballs. His velocity is only in the 89-90 mph range, and he’s not missing many bats with an variety of heater. The curve has good movement, and he throws it quite a bit. Change has some sink, and is also a solid offering. Even without as many K’s, Lackey can be successful by mixing things up and spotting his pitches.

O’s line-up:

Bat Pos Batting Def
Montanez, Lou R LF .235/.235/.235 0.1
Jones, Adam R CF .203/.224/.365 -2.9
Markakis, Nick L RF .270/.373/.397 -1.6
Tejada, Miguel R 3B .260/.327/.420 0.8
Wieters, Matt S C .311/.364/.393 1
Scott, Luke L DH .167/.245/.354
Wigginton, Ty R 2B .279/.373/.674 -1.2
Hughes, Rhyne L 1B .000/.000/.000
Izturis, Cesar S SS .222/.271/.267 1.1

Hughes gets his first start, after being called up to the majors.

Matusz:

K/9 BB/9 HR/9 GB rate FIP xFIP
11.1 3.4 0.0 20.0% 1.86 3.76

The huge amount of flyballs is a concern, even if a lot of them are harmless pop-ups. He’s pitching very well though – no doubt – and is making that Rookie of the Year prediction look pretty good so far (if the team can get him some wins).