Friday, October 03, 2008

Red Sox 2008 ALDS Game 2 Preview

Game II of the 2008 ALDS is tonight. Matsuzaka will be pitching for the olde team and Ervin Santana for the Halos. Following is from MLB.Com:

Scouting Report:
Red Sox: The right-hander turned in a terrific second season, finishing much stronger than in his rookie year, when fatigue took an obvious toll. In 13 starts after the All-Star break, Matsuzaka went 8-2. All year long, the righty dominated on the road, going 9-0 with a 2.37 ERA. His only start of the season against the Angels occurred at Fenway Park on July 28, when Matsuzaka gave up seven hits and six runs. Matsuzaka recorded 154 strikeouts over 167 2/3 innings, giving up 128 hits. Lack of control was an issue, as evidenced by 94 walks. In four postseason starts last year, Matsuzaka went 2-1 with a 5.03 ERA. The wins came in the highest of stakes -? Game 7 of the American League Championship Series against the Indians and Game 3 of the World Series at Colorado.

Angels: Like John Lackey, Santana also struggled in his final start of the season as he allowed a season-worst eight runs over 5 2/3 innings on Saturday against the Rangers. Again, it wasn't like the usual Santana, who has turned it around this season after spending some of last season in the Minor Leagues. Santana was an All-Star this season and struck out 214 batters, which is the most by an Angels pitcher since Chuck Finley struck out 215 in 1996. Santana is 1-2 with a 5.73 ERA against the Red Sox in four career starts but didn't face Boston this year.

Make no mistakes this is not a gimme game for the Sox. Still I expect Francona the Assassin to show up tonight and give this team a chance to win.

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