The Boston Red Sox now find themselves in second place (a few percentage points of difference) in the AL East Division behind the Baltimore Orioles. Things had been rolling along nicely but the Sox hit a wall of sorts and they have now lost six of their last ten games. Still, the shuffle of the past two seasons saw seen them finish near the bottom so being nearly atop the division for a change is a welcome relief for Red Sox Nation.
The pitching has certainly been much better this season, but similar to 2013, the Red Sox high octane offense has been carrying the team for most of the season. Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr along with their solid defensive contributions have been big surprises this year. Given the offensive production this year, the Red Sox could very well have a few players that make the All Star team. The All Star game is a fun weekend but it’s always interesting to see who the fans pick to play in the game, Bogaerts is a fan favourite and has good odds to be picked.
In addition, Travis Shaw and Hanley Ramirez have stepped up big time while mainstay David Ortiz continues his unforgettable retirement tour, chipping in 16 monstrous homers of his own. If Ortiz does indeed retire as planned, it will be nearly impossible for the Red Sox to replace such a great player. Ortiz even passed Carl Yastrezmski on the all-time home run list assuring himself a spot in the Red Sox Hall of Fame –right along side knuckle-baller Tim Wakefield and Jason Varitek.
Ortiz’s achievement comes at an older age but many hope that he sticks around like Ted Williams to play until he is 42 or 43. Either way the Red Sox are lucky to have a handful of incredible players along with Ortiz’s incredible offensive stats this season–Ortiz leads the league in Slugging, RBI’s, Doubles and Total Bases. He’s going out with a bang. During a four game stretch they scored 10+ runs in consecutive games…. Setting another record for runs scored. Let’s hope this awesome hitting display continues to get the Red Sox back into the Post-Season soon. Oh and maybe we can grab a new starter along the way to replace the departing Joe Kelly? I’d take that trade back in a heartbeat.