Mike Aviles is Pimping In Lead-off Role for Red Sox
When Jacoby Ellsbury went down with a shoulder injury, it not only created a hole in the outfield but also at the top of the Red Sox batting lineup. During Spring Training, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine tinkered with the leadoff spot, playing out many different scenarios. One of those included having Mike Aviles bat first and now Valentine looks like a genius.
Aviles has been absolutely pimping for the Red Sox as the lead-off batter and is relishing in the glory. I must admit, I heard the term “pimping” used on the Mutt and Merloni show on WEEI.com when they referred to Cody Ross pimping on Monday night, smashing two home runs, including what ended up being the game winner. After watching Aviles homer on Wednesday night I thought, ‘damn now Aviles is pimping.
According to the Wikipedia Glossary of Baseball, the word pimping is defined as ‘acting ostantatiously or showboating to gain the attention or approval of the fans.’
Aviles may not be flipping the bat aside like Ross did the other night, but he’s certainly gaining the attention of Red Sox Nation and needless to say, he’s getting our approval. So it’s safe to say he’s pimping in a lesser form, but pimping none the less.
Since Ellsbury has been sidelined, Aviles has been batting lead-off in the last eight games. He is now firmly entrenched in a modest seven-game hitting streak which includes two home runs and eight RBI. He has also raised his batting average to .333 on the year and over the past ten games he’s hitting an impressive .366.
While he may not pose the same threat that Ellsbury does when on base to steal, Aviles isn’t afraid to run when the opportunity arises as evidenced by his two steals on the year.
From the beginning of camp way back in February, Aviles had to silence the critics and essentially win the starting shortstop job over the phenom Jose Iglesias. Mission accomplished. Now he’s had to replace an all-star in Ellsbury at the top of the lineup and become an effective hitter who can get on base and make things happen. Mission accomplished.
Suddenly, as Mike Aviles goes, so go the Red Sox. Sounds a little different then what we’re accustomed to hearing but definetly something we could get used to.
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