Tuesday, April 10, 2007

MLB 07 - Game 8

Wednesday, April 11 Fenway Park 7:05 PM ET

Felix Hernandez, RHP (1-0, 0.00) Mariners (2-2) @ Daisuke Matsuzaka, RHP (1-0, 1.29) Red Sox (4-3)

Boston Tied with NYY and Toronto and 1 1/2 game ahead of Orioles. Boston leads series 1 - 0.

ESPN.Com preview should be here.
Yahoo's preview should be here.
The recap after the game will be here.

From MLB.Com Scouting Report:

Red Sox: Matsuzaka lived up to all of his advanced billing and more in his debut on Thursday, stifling the Royals to the tune of 10 strikeouts and one run over seven innings. This will be his first start at historic Fenway Park. In an intriguing twist, the first batter Matsuzaka will face in Boston is fellow countryman Ichiro Suzuki, the lead off man for the Seattle Mariners. Matsuzaka is certainly stretched out, as he threw 108 pitches in his debut while walking just one.

Mariners: The final game Hernandez pitched as a 20-year-old just might have been the best game he's ever pitched. He shut out the Athletics on three hits over eight innings to win his first career Opening Day start, striking out a career-high 12 batters, allowing just two base runners to reach scoring position. Hernandez turned 21 on Sunday.

As usual all statistics were found at the day by day database at Baseball Musings and this year at Baseball Reference.

Expected Batters vs opposing starter

J. Lugo31000010.333
K. Youkilis00000000
D. Ortiz31000101.333
M Ramirez31000000.333
J.D. Drew00000000
M Lowell31001101.333
J Varitek00000000
C Crisp20000010.000
D Pedroia00000000

Historical Pitching lines


King Felix has only pitched one game against the Red Sox and as you can see here it was a beauty. Daisuke of course has never faced the Mariners, but all of Japan will be watching as he faces some other guy from Japan in the top of the 1st. Should make for some good theater right off of the bat.

What I think?
Should be an interesting game as you have 2 pitchers who are highly touted by the baseball world and each delivered the goods in their first starts this season. What worries me though is that only Hinske has faced this guy more than 3 times and the cumulative BA of those who have faced him is way below the Mendoza line at .172. Only Lowell has an extra base hit (HR) and Ortiz has the only other RBI against this guy. Daisuke Matsuzaka san had better bring his A game or this could get ugly.

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