The Boston Red Sox were losers of four straight games before they started up a three-game set against the Toronto Blue Jays last night.
Baseball’s a funny game. Throughout the course of a season, teams are guaranteed ups and they’re guaranteed downs. They’re guaranteed to be inconsistent. There are a few exceptions such as this year’s Los Angeles Dodgers who are a force to be reckoned with.
And remember those 2002 Moneyball Oakland Athletics? You know, the team with the movie about them? The island of misfit toys who set an American League record by winning 20 games in a row during the dog days of summer and then went on to lose the division series in five games?
That’s what baseball is. There are highs and there are lows.
The Boston Red Sox are currently experiencing the brute force of that truth. Losing four games in a row typically isn’t the worst thing that can happen in a long baseball season. But how they’ve lost these games is most painful.
They finished off their series in Cleveland with a 13-6 loss at the hands of the Indians. The scariest part of this trouncing was Chris Sale‘s continued inability to pitch well against the Indians. In eight innings against the Tribe this season, Sale’s allowed 13 runs. The Sox will most likely play the Indians in the ALDS and for the team ace to be having that rough of a time with the Indians is almost as frightening as waking up in a room with Jigsaw from the Saw franchise.
The next two nights would prove to be disastrous for the Red Sox as well. They lost 16-3 at the hands of the fourth place Baltimore Orioles and then followed up that exquisite performance with a tremendous ballroom dance that saw them get pummeled 7-0. Had I been at either game, I would have petitioned for my money back. That’s just who I am.
With the way the previous three nights had gone, Sunday’s 2-1 loss almost felt like a win.
Nonetheless, the Red Sox are struggling in all facets of their game. Their best pitcher over the past week has been number-five starer Doug Fister and the two rejuvenators of the Red Sox offense had their own personal struggles of the week. Eduardo Nunez went down with a sprained left wrist and thumb and Rafael Devers batted .143 and struck out nine times which was good (actually, it’s really bad) for second most strikeouts on the team this week.
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Coming in first was Hanley Ramirez with 10.
Luckily enough for the team, Nunez was back and better than ever last night as he added in a solo home run.
At any rate, the Red Sox have a real chance to get back on track with these next three games in Toronto. Similarly to the Sox, the Jays have been struggling as well, losing seven of their past 10 games. Luckily enough for the Sox, they already took game one, as they held on for a 6-5 win.
The Red Sox are slated to pitch Chris Sale tomorrow and Rick Porcello Wednesday. For Sale, it’s a chance to finish August on a high note, which is pretty important considering this month has been his worst of the season. Sale has an ERA of 5.40 in August thus far.
Yeah, not too great.
With things shaping up the way they are, this September is slated to be another classic battle between the Red Sox and New York Yankees for first place.
While the Red Sox are in Toronto, the Yankees will be hosting the Indians for a three-game set. The Indians are hot while the Jays are not. Therefore, the Red Sox must capitalize on this time to gain ground on those pesky, rebuilding Yankees who are only 3.5 games behind them.
Either way, the Red Sox must put continue to put on an impressive three-game showing north of the border or else the rest of their season may not go according to plan.