The Red Sox began their home stand last Friday after a 9-game road trip with the home cr..."/> The Red Sox began their home stand last Friday after a 9-game road trip with the home cr..."/>

Weekly Superlatives: Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury & Daisuke Matsuzaka


The Red Sox began their home stand last Friday after a 9-game road trip with the home crowd ready for the Red Sox to break the .500 plateau. The last place AL West Seattle Mariners were coming to town for a sure-fire series win, right? Not so fast. The Sox lost the 1st 2 games of the series before winning game 3 and welcoming, with open arms, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. After righting the ship and winning the 1st 2 games of the series, and the 6th straight against the Angels, the Sox struggled in an epic 7 ½ hour battle on Wednesday night/Thursday morning, losing in 13 innings when they were forced to throw Dice-K on the mound in relief. With all that in mind, I present this week’s edition of Weekly Superlatives.

Carl Crawford

The ‘Most Likely to Climb Above .200 this Week’ Award

Over the past week and a half, Carl Crawford has been lighting up the hit column for the Red Sox. He has 5 multi-hit games in his last 10 starts, including 4 doubles, a HR, and 4 RBIs. His average has jumped from an abysmal .154 to a slightly less awful .193 over that same span, but all things are pointing to a much higher mark as the weeks pass. Maybe the most important stat of all, is Crawford’s runs scored mark of 6 in his last 10 games, including scoring from 1st base on a base hit on multiple occasions. Just last night, in the bottom of the 9th, Crawford scored the tying run. His speed is his huge advantage on the base paths, it is just nice to finally see him getting on base to show it off. Crawford will likely break the Mendoza line (.200) fairly soon en route to a more respectable average in the months ahead.

Jacoby Ellsbury

The ‘Most Likely to Maintain a Hitting Streak’ Award

What a few weeks it has been for the Red Sox centerfielder. Ellsbury has now hit in 13 straight ballgames, raising his season average from .186 to .268. Like Crawford, Ells has been a multi-hit machine, with 5 such games in his last 11 starts. The Red Sox are finally getting production from a true leadoff man, and as long as he is hitting, Ells will remain in that spot for the rest of the season. When he is hitting, it sets the tables for the impressive lineup behind him and puts pressure on the defense and pitching staff of the opposing team. Continuing to hit for a high average will result in a lot of wins for the Red Sox. Ells has improved his OBP over the past few weeks, climbing into the .330 range, but if he could push that mark to .350/.360+, then the Red Sox will be in even better shape.

Daisuke Matsuzaka

The ‘Least Likely to Be Converted into a Reliever’ Award

Wednesday night’s game was epically long and painful, especially when the $100 million man entered into the game in the 13th inning for his 1st MLB relief appearance. There was chatter earlier this year about Dice-K being taken out of the rotation and placed in the bullpen, but as of last night, that conversation is over. Dice-K’s line was poor, at best, with 2 earned runs allowed on 3 hits and a walk in his 1 inning of work, sealing a victory for the Los Angeles Angels. Francona was out of options at that point, with the only remaining reliever, Bobby Jenks, having cramping in his arm, but it did allow the Red Sox to get a look at Dice-K in a ‘pen scenario. It’s a small sample size and he was in-between starts, but somehow I think the Red Sox would rather waive the Japanese righty than keep him on in a bullpen role if that scenario arose in the future.

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