Red Sox Hanley Ramirez Destroys Pitches, Still Needs Help


The Boston Red Sox have a new left fielder who is destroying pitches for home runs. The problem is that he tends to do it alone, lately.

Hanley Ramirez, newly acquired in the offseason by the Red Sox, has been seeing the ball very well, apparently without fear:

No green monster or anything else is holding Han-Ram back from obliterating pitches, making him an instant success as an investment by Boston’s brass in the front office. He’s hitting .255 with 5 home runs and 12 RBIs. The .574 slugging percentage has a lot to do with it for the native from the Dominican Republic.

Red Sox Nation has come to get excited each time that Ramirez comes to the plate, especially when tweets like these two, from yesterday’s game against the Baltimore Orioles, follow quickly behind:

Yet, the next tweet is becoming all too familiar with fans, as well:

Offense is great, but it’s even better when you don’t let the other team score. The Red Sox starting pitcher Rick Porcello happened to give up twelve hits, including two homers, for eight runs to the Orioles, in five innings.

A number of veterans like David Ortiz, Mike Napoli, Pablo Sandoval, and Shane Victorino have been struggling out of the gate, not helping the Red Sox offense as much as expected. Ortiz only had one at-bat yesterday before being ejected, and while hitting .257, he has only three RBIs to his credit of two home runs for the season. Napoli’s .143 is abysmal. Victorino’s .148 joins him in the pit of despair. And, to be fair, Sandoval’s .325 batting average could not hit more than four runs home because he comes after Ramirez in the lineup, often after the bases have been cleared. has Ramirez projected at earning 21 home runs and 79 RBIs by the end of this season. Likely, it would have been projected much higher in the RBI category if the rest of the team was seeing the baseball as big as a beach ball, like Ramirez has been, as of late. With more hits, there would be more base runners for Han-Ram to cash into home plate. After being touted as one of the most potent lineups, on paper, before the start of the 2015 season, the Red Sox sit, statistically, in 15th place in the majors, 7th in the American League, behind division rivals the Baltimore Orioles (4th) and the Toronto Blue Jays (5th).

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If the Red Sox offense is going to win more games by offense, considering the pitching isn’t stopping much of the bleeding, then more people have to step up. Got to set the banquet up for Ramirez for him to feast properly. Or, how about generating offense in other places than just him? Technically, shortstop Xander Bogaerts does the best with runners in scoring position (.385), among players with 13 at-bats or more. Ramirez sits at .231. So, why all the attention? When Ramirez connects, he makes us dig the long ball, again. When Bogaerts connects, not as many are on base to cash (8 RBIs), as the ball doesn’t marvel the awe of fans, as they watch it land inside the field.

If Bogaerts and other Red Sox bats could go into beast mode, like Ramirez, maybe the game outcomes could be a bit different. That doesn’t mean home runs are necessary; it means getting on base, making big hits, getting walks instead of strikeouts, and creating havoc for opposing pitchers. It’s a good strategy to be patient at the plate, forcing the other team to go into their bullpen early; however, at some point, you do need to actually have success more than once a game. Playing catch-up all of the time can wear yourself out, even in the best of situations. Help the man out and hit, please?

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