Boston Red Sox: Despite Losses, Ryan Sweeney Making a Name for Himself in Boston

Christopher Benvie@CSBenvie81Correspondent IIApril 11, 2012

FORT MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 26:  Ryan Sweeney #12 of the Boston Red Sox poses for a portrait on February 26, 2012 at jetBlue Park in Fort Myers, Florida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Pretty soon the Andrew Bailey trade will just be known as the Ryan Sweeney trade.

Rightfully so.

Bailey went down to injury in spring training and has added no value to this ball club, whilst on the other hand, Sweeney has been the best player on the Red Sox in this young season.

In some regards, the Baily/Sweeney deal is similar to the Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell deal.  Lowell coming to Boston as a "throw in," so to speak, only to become a fan favorite and World Series MVP in short order.

Yes, it is far too early to crown Sweeney with a title of fan favorite, but we can label him as a pleasant surprise.

In five games so far, Sweeney has accumulated eight hits in 18 at-bats. His .444/.500/.667 batting line leads all players on the Sox.

While at the plate, he is proving to be disciplined as well, having only struck out three times thus far.

The unofficial team captain, Dustin Pedroia, is the only other member of the Red Sox whose numbers are even in the same conversation as Sweeney.  

Pedroia's line is as follows: .364/.417/.636.

Historically, Sweeney's best season came in 2009 with the Oakland Athletics.  That season he hit .293/.348/.407 with 142 hits, 40 of which for extra bases (31 doubles, three triples, six home runs).

He also drove in 53 runs and scored 68.  That season, he proved to be the third-biggest producer on the 81-81 A's team.

The Boston Red Sox are hoping to see that type of production out of the man, and even if he can be almost that good, the team should be thankful.

For now, Sweeney is the one bright spot of this otherwise dismal start to the season.