Stock Up: Boston Red Sox making a playoff push to close first half
One of the more up-and-down teams in the first half of the season has been the Boston Red Sox. They play well against the top teams in the league, winning all seven games against the Toronto Blue Jays and sweeping the New York Yankees at Fenway Park. Then they get swept at home by the Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals. Go figure.
Manager Alex Cora has done wonders with a Red Sox roster that lost a lot of talent from the 2022 season and lost Chris Sale to an injury in early June and he is currently on the 60-day IL. Opening Day starter Corey Kluber has been a disaster and finds himself on the IL too. Despite all of that, they are five games over .500 at 48-43 and two games back for the final Wild Card spot in the American League.
The Red Sox won the final two games against the American League West-leading Texas Rangers before sweeping the Oakland Athletics to close the first half on a five-game winning streak. They have been getting good pitching, mainly from youngster Brayan Bello who is showing signs of turning into a future top-of-the-rotation ace. Their hitting is coming around and Justin Turner has been a very good addition to the middle of the lineup and Kenley Jansen has been money as the closer.
The big question is whether or not the Red Sox can keep this going after the break. They certainly have the schedule to do it with three games against the Chicago Cubs and a trip to Oakland. There is still time for them to make a move and force GM Chaim Bloom to be a buyer, not a seller, at the trade deadline.