Thursday, August 30, 2007

1 of 3?

I'm going to go back to my comment, way back when, at the beginning of the season when we were just edging towards a double digit lead in the division. At the time, I think I said something like, 'it doesn't feel like the Sox are that good.' Well it doesn't. And they aren't. They have good pitching. But they still just can't put a good offensive game together against any decent pitching.

Last night was brutal watching an ancient Clemens throw that many walks but still carry a no-no into the 6th inning. Papi's dinger brought welcome relief, and it simply seemed unbelievable that JD Drew actually got a hit. Of course his next at bat when he could have plated the tying run he flailed at a slider, looking as pathetic as he did the night before.

So continuing a theme...we need some offense! Hopefully the answers are down on the farm and our 25 man roster looks slightly different going into the post-season when rosters contract again.

Seems crazy that I was calling for a Red Sox sweep three days ago. Now I just hope that we can limp out of the Bronx with at least one win.

Here's looking at you Schilling.


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Deja Vu All Over Again

Cross-posted on

Last night's loss to the Yankees was tough to stomach. Although it wasn't quite a gut punch game, it was definitely frustrating. Yes, the Sox are still 7 games up in the AL East -- a lead they will maintain with a win tonight or tomorrow -- but this game dredged up bad memories of past Yankee dominance.

To me, this game was reminiscent of 2003. Good starting pitching from both sides. A sprinkling of home runs shifting the balance of the game back and forth. A crushing blow in the 7th inning (in this case, a 2 run HR by Damon) and then a lights out performance by the Yank's pen. It's been a while since anyone not named Mariano Rivera (and even he has been shaky at times) has instilled fear into the hearts of batters in the bigs.

I've gotta tell you, new guy, Joba Chamberlain, can bring it. I was a little skeptical when I first heard that the Yanks were trading one of their arms (Proctor), for a bat (Betimet) with the assumption that Chamberlain would fill the void in the already leaky bullpen. Memories of Craig Hanson replacing dart throwing closer, Keith Foulke, came to mind. The kid has been darn good though and has brought an element of stability to the Yanks staff.

One has to feel for the Yankees fans just a little. Now I know that the season's not over and that the Yanks very well could be the entrant for the AL Wild Card, but they seem to be doing too little too late. After a serious ass kicking at the hands of Detroit (hello 16-0), they come back and play some serious baseball against the league leading Sox. If they had done a little more of that before the All Star break, the Sox would be in some serious poop right now.

With that said, I like the Sox odds tonight with the young Texan, Beckett, matching up against his idol and fellow Texan, Clemens. Clemens still has game left in him but I don't see him overpowering the Sox tonight. Having Manny out of the lineup tonight will hurt but with the way Papi, Lowell, Pedroia, Crisp and Lugo have been swinging the bats, we should be fine.

One can't help but wonder, however, if the Sox can stand to wait two more days for September call ups before promoting rookie phenom, Jacoby Ellsbury, to provide some pop in the outfield. just reported that neither Manny nor Bobby Kielty will be available tonight so Lugo is the emergency 4th outfielder (ouch). On that happy note, go Sox!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Time to Sweep out The Yankees

OK. After last night's 16-0 loss to the Tigers in which we saw Mike Mussina's 3rd(?) bad loss in a row, I think it's finally, finally, time to put the Yankees to bed. It did get scary there for awhile. Less so, because of how close it got in the standings, but more around the fact that they were playing great and the Sox were just plodding along. Coming off a glorious four game sweep of the White Sox, granted they suck, where the Good Sox scored 46 runs, our guys have to be feeling pretty confident...and the Yanks must be feeling like John Daly waking up with a new wife after a hard bender.

So, in order for the Spankees to have any hope of getting back into the division race, hah, they need to sweep. If they win 2 of 3 this series, it's a loss for them. One game is not enough. On the other hand if the Red Sox win 2 of 3 the Spanks can probably start booking their October tee times, as they will have lost 8 of their last 10 games.

Now I don't want to jinx it, (knock, knock) but I think we might be in for a treat in which the Red Sox get some revenge for the Boston Massacre of last year, and sweep the Yankees right out their home park. Baseball gods please don't get angry, but there it is. Just like we needed the pain of '03 to make '04 happen, I think the pain of '06 will help to make '07 glorious.

Here's looking forward to a great series in which the Red Sox can finally claim the division.


Saturday, August 25, 2007

It Starts with Nos. 4 and 5

Let me start by saying that the Sox magic number is 26. If they can take two out of three from the Yanks starting on Tuesday, it's game over (officially this time.)

I do find it amusing that I live in a town where the baseball team owns the best record in the majors, is second in the majors in ERA, 8th in defense, 4th in runs scored and 6 1/2 up on the second place team in the division yet you hear nothing but doom and gloom on the radio. C'mon guys, really? I know it's been tough losing hold of a seemingly insurmountable 14 1/2 game lead (reminiscent of 1978, I know) but it hasn't been like the Sox have been stinking out the joint.

Let's hope that yesterday's twin-killing combined with today's massacre of the hapless ChiSox (35 runs scored in three games) is the start of a resurgence of the Sox bats. We know that Papi has been coming on strong. He's been lights out the last couple of weeks. Lugo and Crisp have finally turned things around. Lowell has continued to be Lowell of 2003 hitting for both power and average. Pedroia is rookie of the year material and Youkilis is finally showing signs of coming out of his two month slump.

So back to the title of this post... The thing I've been most impressed with this season (and a major but often uncited reason for the Sox's success this season) is the production from their 4th and 5th pitchers. During the last few years, the no. 5 in particular was a killer. Last year they marched out a dozen options in the five slot -- Snyder, Tavarez, Hansack, Dinardo, Johnson, Lester, etc. -- with very little success. Lester offered the most stability in that slot but that was short-lived after his diagnosis with cancer.

This year, the Sox have had much better production out of the 4th spot -- Wake has 16 "league leading" wins and has been mostly untouchable -- and that's led to less stress on the bullpen. The 5th slot hasn't been quite as reliable as Wake but it's done pretty darn good. Tavarez (see my earlier post, Julian Rising) has been a better than serviceable fifth starter. Lester has been good, not great. One might argue that 9-10 isn't exactly something to jump up and down about but given the fact that many of those starters by the no. 5 pitcher have been quality (or at least 5+ innings) has been a godsend. It's one of the reasons that the Sox bullpen has been near the tops in the majors this year.

A few other random notes to mention:

  • * When I saw the score of the Rangers and O's game the other night, 30-3 with our own, Kason Gabbard (6-1) getting the win, I thought it was a misprint. I thought to myself, that's got to be some sort of a record. Well, in fact it was the most runs scored in an MLB game since 1940. Pretty amazing.

  • * Think Doug Mirabelli has polished off his resume yet? Cash has looked pretty darn respectable in catching two of Wakie's games so far. Oh yeah, he may not hit much but he's got the same average as Mirabelli, makes 50% what he does and he's 7 years younger.

  • * Amazing how much more polished the Pats looked in their third game last night. Supposedly, this is the one that counts the most in the pre-season as the starters traditionally don't play more than a few downs in the final exhibition. Barring any injuries, the defense is going to be ruthless this year.

Big series between the Sox and the Yankees next week. To be honest, I'd love to see the Sox win every game 1-0 just to tweak the Yankees noses. Probably won't happen. In fact, if I were a betting man, I'd say the games are going to go 4-2, 7-5, and 2-1. My money is on the Sox winning the first and last games.

Anyone miss Wily Mo yet?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Going Elvis

It is the top of the 6th inning and in honor the upcoming anniversary of the King's death, I am thinking of going Elvis on my computer screen. Hide the freaking shotgun, cause this is one frustrating game.

Pitching and Defense

This has been cross-posted on sister site -

Pitching and defense wins games. At least that's what they say when it comes playoff time in Major League Baseball. There are two reasons why I agree with that theory:

  1. Anyone that has ever tried to hit a ball in 50 degree weather (the average nighttime temperature in late September/early October) can tell you that it's not a pleasant feeling. It's essential that you hit the ball with the meat of the bat. Anything below that and your hands sting for hours afterward.
  2. By the time you've played a 162 game season, players are tired. Most batters have 400-500 plate appearances which translates into somewhere between 1,500-2,000 "rip your arms out of your sockets" swings for many big leaguers. Granted, pitchers grind through the same 162 games but in most cases, starting pitchers have only pitched 35-40 times at an average of 6-7 innings/game.
Why I'm harping on this age old concept of "pitching and defense?" is because it's exactly the thing that will win the Red Sox their 2nd World Series in three years. It's also the reason I am not worried about the Yankees unbelievable post-All Star break push where the Bronx Bombers have won 24 of their last 33 (25 if you count the delayed game they won against the O's).

I'd be lying if I told you that I wasn't impressed by what the Yanks have done over the last month. I'd also be lying if I didn't tell you that I've kept a closer eye on the out-of-town scoreboard every night. But at the end of the day, the Sox are just too good to blow this lead. Put it this way. The Sox have been playing just slightly better than .500 ball since June and yet they still maintain the best record in baseball and are five games better than the second place Yanks.

Two things that support the "pitching and defense" theory. For one, the Yankees offense has averaged just a hair over 7 runs/game during their last 33 games. However, they've also given up an average of 4.9 runs/game in that same stretch including losses to bottom dwellers Baltimore ( 0-12), Toronto (4-15), Chicago (9-13) and Tampa Bay (4-14.)

If you look at the ERAs of the projected playoff teams in the AL -- Sox (3.77), Angels (4.09), Detroit (4.65) and potentially Seattle (4.61) -- the Yanks, on paper at least, don't win many games against these teams. Given the Yankees upcoming schedule (3 with LA, 8 with Detroit, 3 with Boston and 3 with the Sox), we can see if this theory holds true.

The second item that supports the theory of "pitching and defense" leading to victory for the Sox is the law of averages. If the Red Sox own the 2nd best ERA in MLB (1st in the AL) while the Yankees are 14th overall (7th in the AL), the 6th best fielding percentage in MLB (3rd in the AL) and 4th best offense in the MLB (3rd in the AL -- NY is first overall in MLB), this says that the Red Sox have to hang on to their lead over the next 43 games.

There is still a lot of baseball to be played before the fat lady sings but you have to like the Sox chances. A lot of apologists (myself included) have tried to argue that the upcoming schedule for the Sox and Yanks will level the playing field a bit. At the end of the day though, it's about execution. The Sox have it where it counts -- the Yanks don't.

See you in October!

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Rambling Chat Session: Red Sox vs Angels (8/8/07)

A late night IM dialogue during last night's Sox/Angels game between Adawg and Jim last night...

Session Start Wed Aug 08 22:37:03 2007

[22:42] Jim: lester's getting roughed up
[22:43] Aaron | 4777: yes
[22:43] Aaron | 4777: I'm very [beep]ing frustrated
[22:43] Aaron | 4777: with the Sox right now
[22:43] Jim: but the yankees got killed
[22:43] Aaron | 4777: thank goodness the Yanks got their dicks knocked in the dirt
[22:43] Aaron | 4777: ha
[22:56] Jim: is it me or does this game feel like water torture?
[22:56] Aaron | 4777: yes
[22:57] Aaron | 4777: i think lester has already thrown 120 pitches
[22:57] Jim: like the angels are just going to stand there and kick us in the shins all night
[22:57] Aaron | 4777: yup
[23:05] Aaron | 4777: Lester's thinking -- phew, at least I didn't cool off after my 200 pitch 2nd inning...
[23:06] Jim: ha
[23:12] Aaron | 4777: only 50 pitches that inning
[23:12] Aaron | 4777: we're making progress
[23:12] Jim : right... he's up to 245 and counting
[23:13] Aaron | 4777: btw, bob ryan is such a NY putz it makes me sick
[23:14] Jim: def leppard, styx and foreignor at the tweeter ctr... i'm there
[23:14] Aaron | 4777: but of course!
[23:14] Jim: if only motley crue was there too... i'd wear my leopard skin spandex
[23:14] Aaron | 4777: someone forgot to tell Pedroia
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: that he's supposed to be on a "hitting" strike
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: no hits this series!!!
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: anyone hits, they get sent back to the minors
[23:15] Jim Storer: gotta love the let's go red sox chant
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: maybe he can get picked off at first like Lugo
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: no kidding
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: if the Angels weren't kicking their ass
[23:15] Aaron | 4777: I'd be a pissed off fan
[23:16] Aaron | 4777: (speaking for Angels fans that is)
[23:16] Aaron | 4777: wow!
[23:16] Aaron | 4777: I smell DP!!!
[23:16] Jim: is it me or does this pitcher look like a young dan shaugnessy?
[23:16] Aaron | 4777: yes
[23:16] Aaron | 4777: and that's not a compliment
[23:16] Jim: c'mon - give me a close up
[23:17] Aaron | 4777: [bleep]
[23:17] Aaron | 4777: that would have been nice if it was a HR
[23:17] Jim: shut the
[bleep] up!
[23:17] Jim: he just doubled in two runs...
[23:17] Aaron | 4777: oh, I'm not complaining
[23:17] Aaron | 4777: just saying, when he first hit it
[23:18] Aaron | 4777: it looked like a HR
[23:18] Jim: "i wish i had the 40 oz sirloin... this ones only 32 oz"
[23:18] Aaron | 4777: I'm not ungrateful
[23:18] Jim: maybe it is shaughnessy?
[23:18] Aaron | 4777: maybe
[23:18] Jim: talk about the curse of the bambino
[23:18] Aaron | 4777: I wouldn't put it past him
[23:18] Aaron | 4777: same curly hair and weak chin
[23:19] Aaron | 4777: Mike Sciosia is such a fat-headed punk
[23:19] Aaron | 4777: if he wasn't a UMass boy
[23:19] Jim: not that there's anything wrong with that
[23:19] Aaron | 4777: I would really dislike him
[23:19] Aaron | 4777: Yeah kane!
[23:19] Aaron | 4777: what's up tie!
[23:19] Jim: i love JD Drew!
[23:19] Jim: he's awesome
[23:20] Aaron | 4777: wait
[23:20] Jim: let's hear some more "let's go red sox"
[23:20] Aaron | 4777: Junior Gong just wrote a Big P post
[23:20] Aaron | 4777: about how JD should get MVP consideration
[23:20] Aaron | 4777: what?
[23:20] Jim: lol
[23:20] Aaron | 4777: okay -- a HR hear and I can go to bed
[23:20] Aaron | 4777: sorry "here"
[23:22] Aaron | 4777: yes!!!!
[23:23] Aaron | 4777: what's up Shaugnessy
[23:23] Aaron | 4777: the wheels are starting to wobble a little
[23:23] Jim: that's definitely DS
[23:23] Aaron | 4777: yes
[23:23] Jim: you can't go to bed with this
[bleep] going on
[23:24] Jim: way to go 'Cap
[23:24] Aaron | 4777: atta boy
[23:25] Jim: now it's time for some wily mo power
[23:25] Jim: exactly
[23:25] Aaron | 4777: waivers
[23:25] Jim: nicely done f-ing first pitch willy
[23:25] Jim: what's your middle name... nomar?
[23:25] Aaron | 4777: make sure you help out the struggling pitcher
[23:26] Aaron | 4777: there's a reason why those bottom feeders are batting 8 and 9
[23:26] Jim: we have a good end of the order
[23:26] Aaron | 4777:
[bleep], let's go without the DH and let Lester hit
[23:26] Aaron | 4777: he can't do any worse than those two dildos
[23:26] Jim: lol
[23:29] Aaron | 4777: finally, Lester finds his mojo
[23:29] Aaron | 4777: just as he hits the 100 pitch mark
[23:30] Jim: let's see if we can hold a lead for an out or two
[23:31] Aaron | 4777: would be nice

[23:40] Aaron | 4777: nothing like the ump sweating the struggling pitcher with non-calls on close pitches
[23:40] Aaron | 4777: it pisses me off when they do that
[23:40] Jim: taking lester out after 198 pitches
[23:40] Jim: good call
[23:46] Jim: nice
[23:46] Aaron | 4777: very
[23:49] Jim: wtf????
[23:49] Jim: (reference to the news that Reggie Miller potentially joining the Celts)
[23:50] Aaron | 4777: yup
[23:50] Aaron | 4777: heard that on EEI on the way home from work
[23:50] Aaron | 4777: not a bad pickup if you ask me
[23:50] Jim: i still want them to go after CWeb
[23:50] Aaron | 4777: he's had two years to rest his legs
[23:50] Aaron | 4777: yup
[23:50] Aaron | 4777: don't be surprised if they do both
[23:50] Jim: cweb would really fit in nicely
[23:51] Aaron | 4777: they are playing with "house" money right now
[23:51] Aaron | 4777: that's what I love about lugo
[23:52] Jim: did you see him get out of the box?
[23:52] Jim: he took like 20 little baby steps to get moving
[23:53] Jim: memo to pedroia: show moss how a little guys hits the ball
[23:53] Aaron | 4777: no
[23:54] Aaron | 4777: awwwww....
[23:54] Aaron | 4777: too bad
[23:55] Jim: youk should bunt
[23:58] Jim: wait... DS is still in there?
[23:58] Aaron | 4777: yes he is
[23:58] Aaron | 4777: Mike Scioscia is trying to throw us a bone
[23:58] Jim: how you like them apples scioscia
[23:58] Aaron | 4777: exactly
[23:58] Aaron | 4777: I got her numbah
[23:59] Aaron | 4777: tie game at least
[23:59] Aaron | 4777: and runner at 3rd with one out
[23:59] Aaron | 4777: this game is going to go on until 5:30 in the AM
[00:00] Aaron | 4777: $20 says many hits one out right here
[00:00] Jim: don't pitch inside to manny
[00:00] Aaron | 4777: oh, that was his pitch
[00:00] Jim: that was the pitch right there
[00:01] Aaron | 4777: now he'll work the count full
[00:01] Jim: right
[00:01] Aaron | 4777: and either walk or hit a HR
[00:01] Aaron | 4777: or fly out weekly to RF
[00:01] Jim: how do they know which water is their's on the bench?
[00:02] Aaron | 4777: i think they don't
[00:02] Aaron | 4777: which is why when one guy gets sick
[00:02] Aaron | 4777: they all get sick
[00:02] Aaron | 4777: wasn't darren oliver on the sox back in the early 80's?
[00:03] Jim: i think yes
[00:03] Aaron | 4777: he's gotta be at least 50
[00:03] Aaron | 4777: JD looks pissed off
[00:03] Jim: i think he's got his groove back
[00:03] Aaron | 4777: let's hope
[00:04] Aaron | 4777: can you believe that Detroit lost to Tampon Bay 8-1?
[00:04] Aaron | 4777: I guess they spent their wad on beating the Sox before the all star break
[00:04] Aaron | 4777: 'cause they've played .500 ball since then
[00:05] Jim: yeah
[00:05] Jim: i was going to comment on that
[00:05] Jim: bedtime soon
[00:05] Aaron | 4777: yup
[00:05] Jim: let's get a lead
[00:05] Aaron | 4777: I'm in the same boat -- just hoping the Sox could score two here
[00:06] Aaron | 4777: or three
[00:06] Jim: i'm just looking for the salisbury steak... one run
[00:06] Aaron | 4777: I'll take one
[00:06] Aaron | 4777: but three would be nice too
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: there you go Salisbury
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: now Varitek will hit into a DP
[00:07] Jim: a little gravy
[00:07] Jim: nice
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: even though there are two out
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: outs
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: let's see if Oliver comes out in a wheel chair
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: that dude is old
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: I hate this ad btw
[00:07] Jim: remember the baseball club car
[00:07] Aaron | 4777: yes
[00:08] Aaron | 4777: the WB mason ads are worse than the Jordan's and Bob's furniture ads
[00:08] Aaron | 4777: I doubt it!...
[00:09] Aaron | 4777: we should post an edited version of this dialogue on Big P tomorrow
[00:09] Jim: yup

Obviously we didn't stay up for the whole game (the Sox won!) but we hung in there through 6 tough innings

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Big names, very big names, and at the right time?

Boston is a sports town, we all know that. But I feel like I have died and gone to heaven in the last couple of weeks. We're turning into the sports town... And it's exciting. Granted the sox are slumping a bit - a 5 game lead in the AL east isn't comfortable, certainly not like the 12 that it was, or the 8. But they are still the team to beat in baseball. The Bruins are, well, the Bruins. BUT.. Wow, now the Celtics and Patriots have made some serious moves. We're stacked.

I can't think of a reason that we aren't going to see at least one, possibly 3, of our teams playing for championships. I admit that the NBA championship might be asking a bit much. But to Adawg's point, if Lebron James can get to the game single-handedly, there's no reason a healthy 3 superstars can't run through the East. You have to think that the Sox bats will get hot again, and certainly it's better to be in the fall than summer. Their pitching is on point, and stacked. Adding Gagne isn't exactly hurting their rotation. And the Patriots.. a dynasty that could have won 5 of the last 6 super bowls, have more than made up for a few crucial dropped passes. At least on paper.

The last 10 or so years I can remember a flow of big names moving into town, yet it seemed to always be a few years late. Like it was some sot of trap to sell a few jerseys around town before these guys retired. I can't understand why else these veterans were brought in. See: Jose Canseco, Rod Beck (RIP), Andre Dawson, Dominique Wilkins, Brian Leetch, Gary Payton (he could be a stretch here), to name a few. Thanksfully the Patriots have done well at not falling into this phenomenon. But then again, they sucked for the most part until the new millenimum.

Pulling some names from our modern day rosters we can see names like: Tom Brady, Josh Beckett, Paul Pierce, Curt Schilling, David Ortiz, Randy Moss, Donte Stallworth, Manny Ramirez, Ray Allen, Junior Seau, Adalius Thomas, Richard Seymour, Kevin Garnett!

Not that they are all Hall of Famers, but most will be. Wow. What's next?

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Friday Musings (late edition) August 3

Yes, this edition of "Friday Musings" is a few days late. I had the best of intentions of posting last Friday but life got in the way. So enough with the excuses and on with the post...

  • * Who is excited to see Manny Ramirez join the 500 HR club this season? I'm pretty sure he's going to do it. Right now, he's 11 HRs short of the major milestone. According to his season stats, he's hitting a home run every 20+ at bats. However, he's sped that pace up to a HR every 11+ at bats since the All Star game. My money says that he reaches the mark in the last series of the season against Minnesota (home.) You might want to buy your tickets now...

  • * Have you seen this picture yet? According to my friend JonS who writes for this blog, we got scooped by I wouldn't have if I had gotten my act together and published this post on Friday. Either way seeing Big Papelbon and Mike Lowell drinking some pops is pretty humerous. I wonder what those two talk about. Props to Cogslice for scoring this gem.

  • * I'm still a little floored by the number of people that are giving Ainge crap for trading Jefferson et al. for Garnett. While I'll admit that I'd like to see a little more of a supporting cast beyond the new big three (the Celts did sign Scot Pollard today), any GM would be lying if they said that they looked forward to playing the green this year. BTW, didn't LeBron single-handedly take the Cavs to the finals last year? I agree that he's an elite player but I'm not sure he's that much better than Kevin Garnett.

  • * So Barry finally broke the record tonight. Yippee! Now we can all get on with our lives.

  • * If you haven't seen the movie Borat yet, you're missing out on one of the best crafted pieces of comedy this century has to offer. Is it crass? Oh yeah. Would it make your grandmother blush? Most definitely. But does it bring you to the brink of wetting your pants repeatedly? Absolutely. As an add-on, if you have seen the movie but haven't seen Sasha Baron Cohen's appearance on Regis and Kelly you've got watch it now. In particular, pay attention to the reference to Kazakh's pop star, Corky Buchev. I laugh out loud every time I see it.

  • * Sitting here watching the Sox step all over their dicks against Anaheim. They go ahead 1-0 in the first and then allow Anaheim to score two for the early lead. Then Dougie M. hits a laser over the left-field wall with a man on to make it 4-2. Then the wheels fell off and Wake gives up five runs in the 5th. The Sox come right back and put the lead off man (Lowell) on. Instead of having men on 2nd and 3rd with no outs, Lowell tries to score from first and gets thrown out at the dish. Inevitably, the next two batters ground out -- rally over. WTF?
I don't see any good coming from me staying up to watch the rest of tonight's game (it's already 12:08). If the Sox pull off a victory, great. If not, the Yanks will be 5 games back. No pressure.

IMPORTANT POST SCRIPT -- My boy JonS sent me this link from that made me feel a little better (and reiterated my stance over the last few posts)