Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Streaking in Boston
Xander Bogaerts has a 24-game hitting streak. Jackie Bradley just capped off a 28-game streak. Mookie Betts just hit three homers in a game, one to each section of the outfield. This is a team that still contains David Ortiz, Hanley Ramirez, Dustin Pedroia and Travis Shaw, all of whom are hitting extraordinarily well, and a pitching staff of David Price, Rick Porcello and Steven Wright, all of whom are pitching tremendously.
You asked how the Red Sox got to first? There ya go.
Looking at the pre-season projections, I wasn't expecting much of the Sox. I thought somebody like Toronto would lock onto the lead for most of the year. But Toronto has been outmatched, by both the Sox AND the Orioles, which I also didn't call. The Red Sox had, in March, a pretty solid lineup and a relatively alright, if not-exactly-deep rotation.
However, I didn't expect everybody to be hot at the exact same time, which is what's happening right now. Four starters are batting over .300 right now. One of them is the DH, who, so he says, will be retiring after the season. This team, which didn't look impressive to me in March, is now one of the most hard-hitting, well-rounded teams in baseball, and one that more people are beginning to talk about now that Bradley and Bogaerts are having their hitting streaks.
Bogaerts, by the way, is having his season to remember. Last season it was Mookie Betts, and while Mook is still pretty impressive this year, he's stepped back a few paces to let Bogaerts take hold, and he's completely dominating. Not only does he make a ridiculously impressive double play combo with Dustin Pedroia, but he's currently batting over .350, and has the best WAR on the team. FINALLY, after a few years of him doing well enough, Bogaerts is showing his full potential, and the Sox couldn't be more proud.
It's funny- even moreso than the 2013 team, I can't find a ton of reasons to hate this Sox team. Sure, Price can be nasty to my Yankees, and it always hurts when they crush us like crazy, but there are a lot of fun players that I can't especially get behind hating. They might do very well this season, and they might carry the AL East to the end of the season. For a team that could be our frontrunners for a while...they're pretty damn good, and pretty damn likable.
Coming Tomorrow- His Marlins have caught up to those pesky Phillies in the NL East standings. Now...to sticking around, and for this home-run hitter, sticking around is a dire concept, after struggling to stay out of the minors in 2015.