ALDS: BoSox Bop Bombers, Set Sights on 'Stros
A definite trend bubbled over this season that'll have seamheads debating it for years.
Actually, it's the same trend that's been a hot topic among them for a few seasons, now.
There is no better team to serve as the collective poster boy for both sidesof the argument than the New York Yankees, and it might've been their downfall in their Division Series against Boston.
The Yankees won Game 2 of this series with five of their six runs coming from the long ball. However, dudes only managed one dinger in the other three games, all of which were won by the Red Sox.
Including the decisive Game 4, although their 4-3 loss doesn't really show how telling. When the rubber met the road in threat after Bomber threat, BoSox pitching played to the big swings and won damn near every battle.
Kinda like the Bomber attack.
The classic example was a matchup that usually reliable closer Craig Kimbrel got right.
Conversely, it was an absolutely brain-dead at-bat for Giancarlo Stanton.
Dude had to know Kimbrel wasn't gonna serve up any grooved heat with the series on the line. So what's he do with two runners on in a three-run game?
- Takes an up-&-in knuckle curve for a called strike, which makes sense, but
- Swings and misses at a predictable eye-level change outta the zone, another knuckle curve that he shoulda recognized outta Kimbrel's hand from the pitch before,
- Takes a high heater outta the zone that only Manny Sanguillen woulda tried to hit, and then
- Flails at the same damn knuckle curve he flailed at for Strike Two. Good night.
Stanton needs the off-season more than it needs him, perhaps, and a crash course in laying off spinners that start at his knees wouldn't go amiss.
As to the Red Sox, there's a reason they won the AL East and will host Houston in the Championship Series. They showed every aspect of it against the Yankees.
Physically and strategically.