MLB: Stop Worrying, Red Sox Nation

Mike DussaultSenior Analyst IApril 18, 2008

The baseball season is just a few weeks in, and the Red Sox are in first place, but that’s not stopping some worry wart residents of Red Sox Nation from becoming concerned about things like Big Papi’s batting average (after 60 at-bats!), Curt Schilling’s desire to play with their hated rival, and how the stupid construction worker should’ve kept his mouth shut about the jersey buried in the new Yankee Stadium until after it was completed.

Well after last night’s convincing win over the Yanks let’s all just pause, take a deep breath and RELAX!  

Fans and media pundits alike are so pumped up for the return of baseball that when April finally does roll around everyone is more than ready to over-analyze every minute detail of every game.

No place is worse at this than Boston.

Barring an irrecoverable start as long as teams stay at least close to .500 while they get a feel for who they are and what they can do, everything should be okay. The Sox don’t even fall into that category. They have the second most wins in MLB despite possibly the most horrendous schedule to start a season in baseball history. 

What’s there to worry about? They’ve taken three of five from the Yanks. They also swept two games over last year’s playoff opponent Cleveland on the road. Are there still questions?

Of course:


  • Will Schilling return and be able to contribute at a high level? 
  • Are Jon Lester and Clay Bucholz legitimate starters or does there need to be another addition to the starting staff? 
  • Does Mike Timlin still have enough in the tank to be the go-to middle reliever?
  • Is Wakefield’s knuckleball still fluttering like it used to?


The biggest cause for concern thus far is Big Papi only hitting .111. Again, he’s only had 63 at-bats.  He’s coming off knee surgery. But by all accounts he’s in the best shape of his life. I have little doubt that when it gets to September we’ll be seeing the David Ortiz we’re all used to.

Until then let’s just give him a few more times at the plate before we start debating if he’s lost something.  

There are always questions about your ball club in April. The inarguable fact is that the Red Sox have one of, if not the, most talented top-to-bottom rosters in the league.

Manny Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis have been on fire. Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia have picked up where they left off last season. Josh Beckett looks like he’s going to be fine.

Dice-K is undefeated at 3-0. Papelbon already has five saves. And they still even have trade bait Coco Crisp to help them bring in whatever they’re lacking in mid-summer. 

Don’t worry Red Sox Nation, for the hard part is over. We’re in first place and Ortiz will be fine.

There doesn’t need to be a jersey buried in the new Yankees Stadium, the tide turned long before construction on that place even started.