Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Red Sox Slide - Worried? - You Bet

Not much to say, really, but the Yankees have finally caught and passed the Red Sox and taken first place - and that cannot pass unmentioned. The Sox do not hold up well under pressure, esp when it's NYY-related. Well, we haven't played the Yankees in a while, so there is more going on. The offense has dried up completely, and today's post from the Joy of Sox blog tells the story very effectively.

You know what this is?

0 000010 000 100 100 000 000 100 100 010 000 001 001

You might have guessed by now. Yeah - it's the box score for the last 40 innings the Sox have played. Yeesh. Not going to win many games when you can't score more than 1 run an inning. I don't know binary code, so maybe there's a clue in this - but I highly doubt it.

In true RSN (Red Sox Nation) style, it's panic time, and the Sox are in freefall. Their flaws are being exposed, and outside of Youkilis and Pedroia they don't have any big time hitters or anyone who scares opposing pitchers (maybe Lowell on a good day). You could well argue that age and injuries are catching up, and this will soon start to look like a tired, broken down team. It will also make us regret not getting Texeira, as this may well turn out to be the big difference maker by season's end, and the Evil Empire will prevail again.

To be even more bleak, Tampa Bay is just hitting their stride now, and could easily glide by the Sox, leaving them gasping in third place and - strange as it may sound - out of the playoffs. See what happens when you release Lugo?!?!?!? Between him and his pal Manny, there may be another curse shaping up.

How can things go from so bright to so bleak so quickly? I was at the Jays/Sox game on Sunday. Halladay pitched his heart out, and it was clear to me from the third inning on he was in shutdown mode, and the Sox weren't going to get anything more off him. Well, they got one more baserunner, but nothing else.

When everyone is hitting, they ARE the best team in baseball. However, they are just as likely to fold as a group, and then nobody hits. Right now, they've just been too inconsistent, and of course they're going cold just as the Yankees are getting hot. Topsy turvy. I can only hope the tables turn again, and the Sox come back to life in time to save the season.

Today, I'm not too optimistic, and it's looking more likely that they'll need to trade for a big bat by next week to rejuvenate the lineup. I really think it's necessary and my money in on Victor Martinez. That would be great, but short term, let's hope they just get back on the winning track and whimper out of Texas without getting swept. Oh, the joy of Sox...

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