By Aaron Jackson
With the Celtics now tied in their series against Washington, and the Red Sox in need of a fifth starter, I think this Jackson 5 would be best served by doing a series of quick hits, both on the Boston scene and perhaps outside it.
- While the Sox need for a viable 5th starter is strong, the options outside the organization are limited, especially after a major rash of pitching injuries. Guys like Madison Bumgarner, Cole Hamels, Noah Syndergaard, Felix Hernandez and Ian Kennedy all are missing chunks of the season for various reasons. Which means the price for available starters will likely be through the roof. Doug Fister is an option on the free agent market, as is old friend Jake Peavy. There are a lot of question marks there though. Boston could go back to the White Sox and see about adding another of their starters like Jose Quintana, or, for a much smaller return, the oft injured Derek Holland. My guess is it comes down to just how confident the Sox are in a Price return. If they’re confident he will be back soon it seems likely they’ll continue throwing some AAA talent out there until he’s back.
- Here are some interesting numbers regarding the Celtics, via C’s radio broadcaster Sean Grande.
The Celtics have just 10 losses by more than 15 points in their 92 games this year. 4 of those have come in their 4 game at Washington.
As a whole, the Wizards have led games in this series by 10+ points 42 percent of the time, while maintaining a lead of under 10 for 30 percent. That means that Washington has led for 72 percent of this series. Yet it’s still 2-2. Not a good look for Boston though.
- This is more laughable than anything else, but as of the 24th of last month it was the Celtics, not the Cavs, who had the best chance of making it to and winning the NBA Finals. That’s according to widely respected numbers website FiveThirtyEight. As you might expect that is no longer the case, with Cleveland now a heavy favorite to make it to the finals. Cleveland is still a major longshot to win it all, with the Warriors having 81% odds to win the title.
- Some other notes regarding the NBA in general. I’m not sure if this has ever happened before, but it’s something I just now noticed. This past season saw the Celtics, Raptors, and Wizards all finish 17-13 against the West. Advanced stats suggest all 3 would likely be borderline playoff teams over there: Boston because of their almost league worst defensive rebound rate and mediocre defensive efficiency, Washington because of their bad defensive efficiency and Toronto because of their league worst assist ratio and ball movement.
- Talk around the Patriots is they really like undrafted linebacker Harvey Langi from BYU. A number of teams were interested, which means New England had to pay big money to get him. Langhi cashed in at 5th round value, with $15k in signing bonuses on top of a $100,000 base salary. Scouts say he can also play defensive end or any linebacker position, and also could see time as a fullback which is versatility that Belichick loves.
Aaron Jackson (@AaronRJackson on Twitter) is a co-host on The Drive, weekdays 4pm to 6pm on 92.9fm The Ticket and streaming live at DriveShowMaine.com. Follow us on Twitter, @DriveShowMaine and “Like Us” on Facebook, Drive Show Maine.