Doing research for my THT ALCS preview, some things stood out:
- The Red Sox have a right-handed heavy lineup. That probably bodes well for Fausto Carmona and Paul Byrd, and not as well for CC Sabathia. This is more of a Rafael Betancourt series than a Rafael Perez series.
- Boston's a more patient team than the Yankees, as difficult as that is to comprehend. They haven't hit for as much home run power as previous Sox teams, but they have a lineup full of work-the-count hitters.
- The Indians should have held out for this guy a couple of years ago.
- Boston's a much better hitting team at home (.844 vs .768 OPS), which isn't all that surprising. It's almost a blessing that the Indians didn't get HFA, otherwise we'd be seeing Westrbrook and Byrd at Fenway instead of Sabathia and Carmona.
- Jonathan Papelbon has allowed 30 hits and struck out 84 in 58.1 IP. In other words, don't expect any late comebacks, at least by the Indians.
- Boston has two good left-handed relievers, so Eric Wedge will have to play the matchup game late.
- There is an opportunity to throw CC Sabathia three times in this series, but he'll have go on three days' rest in Game 4 to do so. I don't think that's happening unless the Sox are up 3-0.