After an uncharacteristically bad start to the season, the Boston Red Sox are back, making moves, and fighting to get to the top of the AL East.
Despite being a few games under .500 in April and early May, the offense is steamrolling through opponents’ pitching, and the Red Sox starting rotation is starting to become consistent, and reliable once again.
Just a few weeks ago the Red Sox found themselves in fourth place looking up at the Rays, Yankees, and Blue Jays all the while being seven games back. Well, all that's changed now, and let me tell you it feels so good.
Pitching, and the Red Sox new found ability to swing the bat.
In the last 13 games, the Sox have won 10, thanks in part to a consistent pitching rotation. According to ESPN, the Sox pitching stars have posted a 2.54 ERA during this span after previously having a dismal 4.99 ERA.
With Josh Beckett, who many consider to be the Red Sox ace, being placed on the DL, others have had to step up. In particular veteran knuckleballer Tim Wakefield, who has had his share of successes and failures this season. Dice-K is slowly starting to display why the Red Sox paid so much money for him, and Papelbon is getting back into the groove of things after blowing a few saves early on in the season.
Also helping contribute to the offense side of things?
David Ortiz. Big Papi has been a huge factor behind the Sox latest success thanks to his 10 homeruns and 27 RBIs, just in May alone! It looks as if Big Papi is finally getting comfortable behind the plate again, and returning to his old RBI and homerun producing self that the Rex Sox Nation has come to know, and love.
Despite having key players on the DL such as Josh Beckett, Jacoby Ellsbury, and recently activated Mike Cameron, other players are stepping up. J.D. Drew has been on fire accounting for 30 RBIs and Adrian Beltre is starting to prove why Mike Lowell lost his starting position at third base, even though Lowell is old and had hip surgery—Hey, I still love you Mike, you’re my boy.
As it looks now, the Rays are still in first sitting at 34-18, the Yankees at 31-20, the Blue Jays at 31-22 and the Red Sox in a close race at 28-24.
The Rays and the Blue Jays will be starting a three games series tonight, so that will only further close the gap with one of those teams.
Red Sox Nation, fear no more. The Red Sox are back. If they can continue to have consistency within their pitching staff, and if field players such as Beltre, J.D. Drew, and good ol’ Big Papi can continue to contribute, the Red Sox will find themselves climbing up the AL East. The season still has a ways to go so in the mean time, just have a little faith.