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In the latest in Boston-based rollercoaster ride news, the theme park excursion we call the Boston Red Sox has finally taken us through a week that, by all means, is just average.
When was the last time we got an average week from our former Beaneaters? If I was to answer that question, my best guess would be somewhere in late July or early August of last summer - before the sickening September collapse we'll never forget that made us feel like we were back in the pre-2004 curse era.
Today, we’re back at a 15-19 record after going 4-3 on the week – and I believe we can work at and begin improving from here. If we come together as a team we could be at the top of the Wild Card by the All-Star break. Call me an Optimist Prime, but there is a big gap between our record and that of the Minnesota Twins, who have a league-worst 9-24 record.
The Boston Red Sox ARE NOT on that level of bad. Our team is still very talented, but last year’s chicken & beer hangover has dragged on into this season, with our Southern friend Josh Beckett exemplifying Hopefully, it’s gone and doesn’t appear again for the rest of the year. Bobby V's gotta keep the team at this level of tranquility for the rest of the year or I may have a coronary.
Here are this week’s player awards.
Best Hitter: Back again for the second week in a row is my boy Dustin Pedroia. This fearless little shit might be my favorite second baseman of all-time - not only is he our best hitter, but do you see some of the plays this guy makes on defense? LASERSHOW.
Best Pitcher: The most important thing about evaluating Clay Buckholz as a pitcher is looking at the fact that the Sox ALWAYS seem to score a lot of runs for the right hander. He showed more promise this week in a win against Cleveland on Friday, but Bobby V can’t be afraid to pull guys like Clay at the end of an inning: Let them get their standing ovations when the rest of the team goes to the dugout between half innings instead of magically making the umpires stop time to cheer on the valiant starter who probably threw too many pitches and may have fucked up the game for you because you left him in too long.
Biggest Surprise: Do you remember Daniel Nava? The kid who hit a grand slam on the first pitch he ever saw in the MLB for us back in 2010? Well, playing in all four games against the Indians, he went 6-10 with 4 RBI. Maybe we should stop throwing this kid around the Minor Leagues… He did have a .351 OBP for us in his rather short rookie year.
Biggest Disappointment: Dare I say Adrian Gonzalez? People seem to be “fed up” with his unacceptable clutch performances, but it's hard to complain when this guy gets 2+ hits in 3 out of 4 games against the Indians.
Unsung Hero: Who is Will Middlebrooks? He might be Youk’s defensive AND offensive replacement at 3rd base if our bald veteran doesn’t pick up the pace: Middlebrooks is hitting .310 with 4 home runs in the 10 games he’s played in.
Injuries: Even though Big Papi got in a car accident and awkwardly ran over 1st base in the same day, our smiley slugger seems to be fine. We could still use our leadoff hitter(s), though…
Biggest Bum: Josh Beckett got booed off the field. That’s what happens when you try to be Tiger Woods mid-season, bro.
Coming Up: Two random games at home against the surprising Seattle Mariners, two down in Tampa Bay against the Rays and then the Sox begin interleague play against the rather disappointing Philadelphia Phillies (in Philly – sorry guys, Papelbon’s not coming back to Fenway this year unless it’s in the World Series). This should be a nice mix of teams for the Sox to come out of next week with a winning record against - who knows... Maybe we could creep our record back up to .500.
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