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3/28/07 vs. the Twins and MLB.TV package contest!!!

March 28, 2007

Quick note before the recap of tonight’s game.

Starting next Monday, Opening Day, there will be a contest on this blog in which two winners (hopefully Red Sox fans!) will be chosen daily over a period of 10-12 days, to receive the the MLB.TV package for the 2007 baseball season. Check back on Sox Opening Day for rules on entering.

They start counting for real now. Was a nice night, warmer than I thought which was a great thing.

Quick observations. Santana, regardless of his line, seems to be better at the end of this spring than he was in 05 and 06, that’s not a good thing. The Twins lineup sans Mauer is very different.I know that’s not incredible insight, but it’s hard to explain just how much different they are with him hitting 3rd. Mike Lowell can flat out pick it.If there is one position I’ve been spoiled on as a pitcher it’s been third base. With the O’s we had Craig Worthington, who could pick it. Then with Houston Ken Caminiti, then to Philly where I got to pitch in front of Scott Rolen. Then to Arizona for Matt Williams, Craig Counsell (horribly underrated defender btw), then here for Billy Mueller and now Mike.

Let’s just start with the game line belies how I felt. I would bet that I threw the lowest % of fastballs for strikes than in any appearance over the last 6-7 years. Had no feel for it and mechanically I could not get in sync. That being said I threw every off speed pitch I had tonight and I am pretty happy that they all feel ready to go.

Fell behind Castillo to start the game and knew on pitch one that I had zero feel for my fastball. Missed the next two by yards instead of inches. Came back to full count and got a tapper for the out. Tyner made an out on a behind in the count change and I got inside on Redman with a 2 seamer. One of the amazing transitions that just kind of happened this spring is being able to ‘pitch to contact’. I’ve always said I do, and sometimes I’ve tried but never to the extent I have this spring.

The 18 pitch first was a result of bad command and not contact. Over the next few innings we did some good things. I let ‘Tek take the game calling completely tonight. There are times when things are just not working, either physically or mentally, and I have to hand over game calling to him. Rather than wait on it, tonight was the perfect time to get one out of the way.

When I am into a game plan and pitching I will be 2-5 pitches ahead of the current pitch sometimes, depending on the hitter and situation. When I am struggling, every pitch, every thought is a grind. Having a catcher, and Doug is fantastic at it too, that you know is in tune with the hitter, your stuff and the plan, is huge. I can go from scrambled thoughts and nothing working, to just clearing the head and waiting on the sign, then the pitch thought and then the pitch. Every now and then they’ll both throw me a ‘curveball’ in a sequence but when I am handing the calling to them I will execute the pitch ten times more efficiently than when I am on a game plan, they put down something I am not expecting, I shake, they insist, I shake, they insist, then I half heartedly make a horrific pitch. I screw that up even now, 15 years after learning not to do it, it’s just that I don’t do it as much is all.

Two hits I gave up tonight were both on bad location. Castillo, after falling behind 0-2, hit what was supposed to be a higher than high middle fastball, that I left at the belt. White hit a 1-2 split that didn’t ‘split’, basically an 85mph floater.

We had agreed that 55 would be the limit tonight, no need to push this last one. This allows you to get in a solid 4 days of pre start work, a good bullpen, and be ready come Monday.

130 Comments leave one →
  1. countzer0 permalink
    March 29, 2007 10:13 pm

    Curt

    OK this is just crazy. I gotta tell ya — I’m a lifetime, third-generation. pinstripe-wearin’ Yankees fan and up until a week ago I always thought you were an arrogant, loud-mouth…um yeah.

    You changed my mind right here. Guess that just goes to show you don’t know squat about someone by what you read in the media.

    Reading the skin cancer self-testing link made me like you. Reading the posts on Pete’s blog made me cry and smile at the same damn time. Reading your Q&As and the thousands of words you’ve written here made me damn proud of you.

    You keep on doing this thing bro — it’s a good thing. No, it’s a REAL GOOD thing. You make me glad we’re both part of the human race.

    Looking forward to your MMO…maybe I’ll see you in VSOH.

    Peace.

  2. 1creativemind permalink
    March 29, 2007 10:27 pm

    I just read about the Manny / Ichiro trade… I would absolutely LOVE to see Ichiro in that lineup, but I am very unwilling to let Manny go… Am I insane? I feel like the majority of people really want Manny gone. Forget the whole “Manny being Manny” thing for a minute and consider what you have… Unquestionably one of the best hitters EVER, and (let’s face it) his presence is the lineup is critical to Ortiz’s success at the plate. I guess I’m one of those rare fans that cares more about what a player does on the field than off. Curious to hear your (and everyones) thoughts on this.

  3. airforcesoxfan permalink
    March 29, 2007 11:06 pm

    Curt,
    My first time in your blog, gotta say…great stuff. Hey, nice outing against the Twins. Its amazing to hear you say you had no feel for your fast ball, I only saw the box scores, not the game, and you sure can’t tell from it. I know pitching opposite Santana had to get your juices flowing even if its was a spring training game.
    Now its on to KC…Give ‘em hell Curt. Good luck in ’07. I’ll certainly be checking in here often and watching you guys even more. Take Care
    “Tack” in MT sends…

  4. roguesbeer permalink
    March 30, 2007 12:17 am

    I posted a reply in one of your first blogs titled ‘B game in Fort Myers’ where I explained that my son’s middle name is Schilling and why I made the decision to do that. Two questions for you here – 1) How does a fan naming a child after you make you feel? 2) What is the best way for a die hard fan to introduce their kids to major sports stars and maybe actually get a minute or two to talk to them without doing it in a social setting where the athlete’s privacy gets invaded. For example, you said before that you will not sign while you’re at dinner or doing family things which is totally understandable – but what options do us lay folk have to actually have your attention for a couple minutes without being pushy or rude?
    Thank you for all you have done for Red Sox nation, and for the way you live your life and the way you play the game. It will never be forgotten.

    Chris Cherry

  5. lunenburgbob permalink
    March 30, 2007 2:37 am

    Love the blog so far, Curt. And I’m looking forward to the ’07 season! Quick question or two – how is the changeup coming? I know you’ve said it’s “coming along” – is it game ready? And how do you think the ’07 infield compares to last year’s, defensively? Keep up the good work on all fronts – especially SHADE and ALSA!

  6. soxrule07 permalink
    March 30, 2007 8:38 am

    Curt, I really want to thank you for doing this blog. Getting to hear thoughts from the “master” is something that I am looking forward to.

    I know spring doesn’t usually mean much, but in looking at your pitching so far this spring, it appears that you have regained your edge from 2004. I think you (and the Sox) are primed for an unforgettable season. I hope that you and the front office are able to get something done so you finish your career here. Good luck this season!

  7. notcoachbuckley permalink
    March 30, 2007 9:40 am

    hey Curt

    Lots of the “radio talkers” are disisng Tek and Dougie, saying stupid idiotic things like “they cant even hit their weight..”

    Please comment on the job they do and how you rank them ove rothers.

    – Vincent Errichetti

  8. citizenwakefield permalink
    March 30, 2007 10:10 am

    Hey Curt – love your blog. Also, I loved your quip about how miserable it is playing catch with Wakefield…what is the old line about how to catch a knuckleball? “You wait for it to stop rolling around and pick it up.” Gives you a whole lot more respect for what Dougie Fresh does every fifth day, I guess.

    Anyway, two questions – one sort of inane and one that has been bothering me:
    1) Inane: what’s your favorite food? Do you like Caribbean food and/or Japanese food? Who has the strangest eating habits on the Sox? I heard Wily Mo won’t eat vegetables unless his body fat % goes over 8%!

    2) Less inane, I hope: I read an article somewhere (Tom Verducci possibly?) that posited that Daisuke has so many pitches and such excellent control over all of them that he actually uses his non-fastball pitches to set up his fastball. Statistics back it up – I think the percentage of FBs he throws is a good bit less than league averages both in Japan and definitely in the MLB. Is this kind of like how Wake can throw a “heater” in certain situations to mix it up after establishing the knuckler (rather than when he throws it when he’s down in the count), or is it more like Santana with the curve/FB strategy? Are there any other starting pitchers (especially power pitchers) that establish their breaking pitches so they can throw their fastball?

  9. bamasoxfan permalink
    March 30, 2007 10:25 am

    Curt,

    Good luck this season. I can’t wait to watch you pitch this year. I think what your doing for ALS and other charities speaks volumes about your character.

    Q: I’m a high school football coach and I was wandering if you played any sports other than baseball when you were in H.S.?

    also, you mentioned that you didn’t start pitching until you were 18,

    Q: How did this come about? What position did you play before you started pitching?

    Again, Good Luck in 07.

    Brian

  10. redsoxmom1967 permalink
    March 30, 2007 11:48 am

    Good luck on Monday. As many others, I have waited all winter for this season to begin. I wish you nothing but the best. I have to tell you one thing that I have noticed you do that tells me the true stroy of the man. Before you start a game, when you are on the pitchers mound, I assume that you say a prayer and then you kiss your cross. HOW BEAUTIFUL !!! As a mother of a future priest I thank you for showing your love and belief in God.

  11. nhfan permalink
    March 30, 2007 11:55 am

    Curt
    Best wishes in 2007. love the links page and thanks ever so much in featuring The Webster House. Appreciate all you did for our children at Christmas and look forward to seeing you at Fenway .We are all rooting for you and the team this year and know it will be a great season
    Pleasure to have met such a great athlete and caring family man.
    Go Curt
    Go Sox

  12. irnbru permalink
    March 30, 2007 12:09 pm

    Hello, Curt.

    Reading on how Jon Lester is going to be making rehab starts for Gabe Kapler’s new team reminded me of somethings I’ve read. In many interviews I have read, Gabe is listed as “favorite teammate” or “teammate most missed”. Can you tell us about him? I know I’m a big Gabe fan (player and person) and was wondering what you thought.

  13. soxfan580 permalink
    March 30, 2007 12:35 pm

    Curt,
    I am going to my first Sox game on the 14th of april. My father in law got tickets for us so I can go before I head ti Iraq in June. Any chance you know if you are pitching that game?

    Thanx ang GO SOX!!!

    Steve

  14. 8yaz8 permalink
    March 30, 2007 12:37 pm

    Hey Curt,
    First off, thanks so much for this blog…great stuff.

    Yesterday on the D&C show they were having a little fun with LL and guessing which Sox players were most likely to follow your lead and start thier own blogs. Timlin, Youk and Pap were thier choices/guesses.

    Has anyone of these guys or others talked about starting a blog? What are the chances of getting one of your teammates to do an entry or two on your blog? Maybe have an occasional guest appearence. I think that would be very cool.

  15. tripler6 permalink
    March 30, 2007 1:21 pm

    Hi Curt.

    I have tickets to the April 11th game, where Dice k is supposedly starting.

    My one question is – should we chant in japanese?

    Know any good japanese chants?

  16. lakeboy permalink
    March 30, 2007 2:01 pm

    Hey Curt,

    I was at opening Day Last year in Texas and was lucky enough to have seats right next to the Sox Bullpen. I was able to see your warm up routine and bullpen session before the game. It was a spectacular sight to see. Does it bother you at all having so many people watch doing your thing from such a close proximity or are you able to tune everyone out? May the Lord bless you and keep you. May the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. May the Lord lift his countenance upon you and give you peace.

  17. sean24 permalink
    March 30, 2007 2:36 pm

    Mr. Schilling,
    GL on Monday. A lot of different reporters have been comparing Daisuke to Pedro when he was “on” (see ’99, ’00, etc.). What similarities do you see (if any), and is this just another media ploy to get people like me excited? Thx.

    Sean

  18. plaidlemur permalink
    March 30, 2007 2:55 pm

    Curley Haired Boyfriend’s Source of Bitterness (CHBSOB),

    I just read that Johnny Pesky is to be banished from the Red Sox dugout by MLB. I feel sick. What reaction is there from the locker room about this decision? It seems many of the players are attached to Johnny, is there any way that you can see around this horrific decision?

    Thanks for the insights into the veiled world of every man’s dream job.

  19. soundie permalink
    March 30, 2007 3:21 pm

    Awesome news on the contest. Can’t wait for opening day. Best of Luck!

  20. March 30, 2007 3:45 pm

    Curt,

    I’m glad the MLB.tv deal is the online package.

    I’m wondering what you thought when Tom Verducci said he was an umpire for a game or if you knew it and how well he umpired for a game.

    -Anthony

  21. roojchan permalink
    March 30, 2007 5:09 pm

    Curt,

    The best measure of a blog seems to be how often i am willing to distract myself to check how often i am checking for updates… you have reached the multiple checks in one hour stage.

    (i only check my wow’s guild forums more, http://www.avaguild.com/forums a blatant attempt since we are recruiting.)

    So quick question: Have you ever spoken with another pitcher and just realized that your approach and their approach are just completely different and alien? When was it that you began creating a “game plan” for every hitter. I found what you wrote abotu how your old pitching coach and you would design a plan for each hitter fascinating. Were you able to do this even in High School? College (i apologize if you didn’t play college ball), the minors? Is this a skill or habit that more experienced pitchers can rely on?

    Linus

  22. March 30, 2007 5:12 pm

    I totally think the winner should be me because I rule and stuff. And lame MLB rules means I can’t see the games here in exile in Seattle. And um … my nickname came from Fisk. And I like pie.

  23. bosoxfan3384 permalink
    March 30, 2007 9:17 pm

    Hey Curt,

    I got 4 questions,

    1) do you show your “books” to other pitchers such as beckett and wakefield?

    2) do you think that you will upload pic’s and teach other people to throw the curve or split throughout the season??

    3) Are you going to have giveaways with autographed baseballs of you or other players??

    4) i was extremely shocked that they sent down hansack. Who would you rather start in a game Tavarez or Hansack?

    Also i am a big blogger and on every site i go to i always have this under my signiture it is a qoute of yours and i like it a lot

    “I care what people think, but that doesn’t change what I say. I am who I am.” Curt Schilling

  24. firedannyainge permalink
    March 30, 2007 11:19 pm

    Good evening Curt.

    Can’t wait to read this blog after the first Evil Empire / Red Sox fight.lol

    http://firedannyainge.wordpress.com/

  25. fredsox permalink
    March 31, 2007 10:50 am

    Thanks for the inside dope on misplacing the fastball and having to rely on other pitches to get through your start. Quite interesting. Funny that back in the day ( OK.. the 60s, Sandy Kofax, best lefty EVER in my opinion didn’t have all the info that pitchers have today and still managed to win all those C.Y Awards. I know that hitters today are in MUCH better shape and have better training tools but my question is this would SK, or Don Drysdale or Satchel Paige for that matter be as dominating a pitcher today as they were in their times?
    C.S
    Give us the undying Red Sox Nation fans your list of
    1. Best Curve in the American League
    2. Best Splitter in the AL
    3.Best Fastball ( with the most movement)
    4.Which hitter you HATE to face in a big game situation ( Papi doesn’t count naturally)
    5. What hitter consistently just murders you no matter what you throw.
    6.The prospect of facing Barry Bonds at Fenway this year.

    Terrific Blog, thank you,
    This coming from the most die hard Red Sox fan the island of MANHATTAN has ever produced.

    Freddie.

  26. russmatt permalink
    April 2, 2007 4:56 pm

    ……a thought on big-boned, proper mechanics, low effort, power pitchers throwing strait changes……. anecdotal from a regression guy but the following makes sense to me:

    Big boned, proper mechanics, low effort guys can pitch more effectively at the same velocity relative to max effort, small boned or arm drag guys because the hitter has more difficulty timing fastballs that are thrown with less effort (an illusion of slow ball speed is created) vs. those pitched with greater effort . The opposite is then true for both style of pitchers regarding strait change ups. Strait change-ups thrown by big boned, proper mechanics, lower effort pitchers don’t fool the hitter to the same degree that those thrown by max effort, small boned or arm drag guys (an illusion of high ball speed is created) – the best example of the later being Pedro Martinez.

    Curt……suggest bagging the strait change.

  27. mriordan permalink
    April 2, 2007 6:22 pm

    Have to think the Red Sox feel a bit better about waiting till the end of the year to get the contract done. I’d have to agree with you it seems like the front office does know what they are doing.

  28. spuz permalink
    April 3, 2007 6:07 am

    From personal expereince I understand that pitching is a extremely mind draining expereince, do you think yesterdays performance could have anything to do with the amount of mental needs when responding to all the question on 38 Pitches? Is it stressful to respond to all the diffrenent types of questions that you recieve on the this page?
    Also I would like to say good luck in your next start and I hope you find your groove soon.

  29. April 11, 2007 8:51 pm

    Hope this doesn’t get lost in the full list of postings here,

    But wanted to say thanks Curt and 38pitches for the MLB package.
    I won today and will share it with both of my kids as we enjoy the games.

    Thank you and God Bless

    Roger Bayne

  30. mattlenny permalink
    December 27, 2007 11:24 am

    Curt,

    This has been the most exciting preseason that I can remember since living in Arizona myself (I used to love just going to the workouts…I lived about a mile from the Angels spring training facility). And the funny part is, I am reliving it in December. Thanks for the archives and all of your thoughts regarding the Sox and baseball. It has been fun. I can not wait to read about the regular season (wonder how ’07 will turn out for the Sox?).

    By the way, I hope you and your family are having a wonderful holiday. It seems like you are just as busy in the off-season as you are during baseball. I hope (and believe) you take time for just you and your family….enjoy it.

    Thanks again,

    Matt

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