Wednesday, January 7, 2009

4 Things:

1) So I guess the Celtics aren't going to win 73 games this year are they? I really think the Celtics will right themselves a lot sooner than later - I'm calling a win in Cleveland on Friday - but the real side effect of this recent skid is the fact that they are now in second place in the Eastern Conference standings, a half game behind Cleveland but also only a half game ahead of Orlando who is at 3. It is also worth noting that during this rough stretch the schedule has been chalk full of travel and almost no time to practice/adjust to the new "let's mess with Rondo" D that is flustering them. Plus it's not like they are losing gimme games at home. No excuses I know, but as long as the Celtics finish with the 1 seed in the East at the end of the day, the actual record they compile to get there really does not matter. Although it would be nice if it could be better than the West's 1 seed as well.

2) I hope Mrs. Teixeira enjoys her time in the Big Apple. Can't wait to hear her take on things when he gets booed after an 0-4 against the Red Sox in April to drop his average to .220.

3) It has been said before by many people, but bears repeating. Last year, Jason Giambi hit 32 homers, drove in 96 runs and had an OPS+ of 128. This was done in 458 at-bats. Last year, in 574 at bats Mark Teixeira hit 33 homers and drove in 121 with an OPS+ of 151. Discard the RBI because Tex had over 100 more at bats and was hitting in the middle of orders while Giambi lived mostly around the 7 hole. Don't discard the adjusted OPS because that is important and don't forget that Tex is a MARKED upgrade with the glove over Giambi and definitely more fleet of foot as well. Those are all important aspects of playing baseball, but let's not forget the big picture numbers which is what Tex will ultimately be measured on by the local media and fans: HR and RBI. The RBI will take care of themselves because he will be hitting in the middle of a pretty loaded lineup. The HR will probably be a wash from the Giambino. Therefore, the upgrade from one to the other really is not as huge as it may seem and while it helps NY down the road at the 1B position, it is not a massive upgrade for next year.

One other thing that should be mentioned is that from where I have stood, following the Red Sox it seemed that New York fans never really warmed up to Giambi until after he made his comeback from whatever steroids related illness he had. After that he seemed to be a crowd favorite and say what you will about Giambi but he has always seemed to be a pretty likable guy. Kind of a rich man's Kevin Millar. As for Teixeira, he seems from all I have read about him to be a pretty unlikable guy. There seems to be a lot of A-Rod/prima donna in him and I'm not sure how that will play there. With Giambi, when the going got rough for him he was able to fall back on his personality to carry him through the day. With Teixeira I am not sure if that can happen simply because he seems like a dick. It's all speculation of course but I think the honeymoon with Tex and the Yankee fans will be pretty short.

And one more time so I am entirely clear and not trying to sound like a jilted homer, all of the Tex versus fans/media questions that I have mentioned above would be just as in play if he were coming to Boston.

4) Not to sound like a spoiled, bratty, Boston sports fan, but not having the Patriots in the playoffs sucks. At the same time, with the defense as it was they inevitably would have crushed us for a third year in a row by allowing a last minute drive to end the season. So by that token, maybe it is for the better? Nah. Remember this the next time we suffer a crushing postseason defeat. At least we got there.


J.R. said...

Do you feel silly for that now? Conventional Wisdom said that the Celtics were playing the best basketball, but there impossible to maintain record in close games indicated otherwise. John Hollinger's analytical approach correctly predicted this course correction for the C's. He is an asset over at ESPN and I suggest you research some of his work and consider his ideas instead of promoting the tired opinions marched out by most of the talking heads in the mainstream media

Neil Williams said...

Hey genius, more than one writer on this Site. If you checked THE VERY NEXT POST, you would have seen my rebuttal to Pricing Boy. Pretty much explaining EXACTLY what you just bitched about.