Red Sox Strut: Week 14 – Placing Betts With An Ace


Now, to fully understand what the Red Sox Strut is, it means to have reason to walk with a confident, proud air around you. Some people mistake it for vanity, arrogance, or being pompous. This incorrect assumption is not what we mean. The Strut is about knowing that your deeds showed off your amazing skills to the baseball-loving public.

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A week from today will be the 2015 MLB All-Star Game in Cincinnati. However, with the Boston Red Sox slowly creeping up on the four other teams in the American League East division, six games back, you don’t have to wait to see some high-caliber talent strutting on the field. The Red Sox have benefited from having two players in particular show their dominance as of late. One was doubted and expected to have the sophomore slump, after last season’s rookie success. The other man has stood his ground while others dismissed that he could handle the role of an ace on the mound.

Dare we say that both of these Red Sox players deserve to be on tonight’s list of All-Stars?


This week’s best pitcher award is strutted by Clay Buchholz, the ace of the Boston Red Sox starting rotation. Yes, I said ace. You can say ace after the week that Buchholz has had.

The Red Sox are 7-3 in their last 10 games, in large part due to the excellent pitching that has come from the starters. Buchholz has won five out of his last seven starts, two were no-decisions, with a 1.99 ERA and a combined 42 strikeouts. Two of those wins happened this past week, where Buchholz a combined 13 opposing batters from both the Toronto Blue Jays and Houston Astros, two very potent offenses.

Against the Blue Jays, Buchholz pitched eight innings of one-run ball on five hits and no walks. He surpassed that effort with nine complete innings of one-run ball on six hits against the Astros.

The Texas native has been on point for a long time between June and July, making up for a slow start in April and May. Instead of teams salivating with the idea of breaking down Buchholz’s clay-looking mental strength, he has looked more like Ice-Man, confident in his pitches and working well into the latter part of each game.

I’d tell Buchholz that he has every right to strut into the All-Star Game, but after some of the decisions made for the All-Star starting lineup rosters, you never know. At least he can strut about last week, though.

Position Player:

There’s no contest on this one. The only reason why center fielder Mookie Betts isn’t the starter for the A.L. All-Star team is because his name isn’t Mike Trout and the stigma around the Red Sox earlier losing woes.

In the last seven games, Betts has been the Boston player to bet on every night. He leads all center fielders in the A.L., as well as his entire team, with seven RBIs. His .419 batting average leads the team and is just behind Kansas City Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain for the league lead (.423).

Red Sox outfielder Alejandro De Aza was also a possibility for this week’s Strut award, hitting .391, but he just fell short of Bett’s batting average. Betts’ single homer also helped make the difference. Hanley Ramirez hit three home runs in the same stretch, but he only had five RBIs and hit only .200 for the week.

At the start of the season, people were making close comparisons to Shane Victorino and Rusney Castillo to see who would be the odd man out of the outfield. Now, while Victorino and Castillo find themselves trying to get back into MLB games, Betts has no peer on the team. Now, the comparison is between himself and the rest of the MLB elite. If that’s not a reason to strut, there’s the possibility that his amazing defense and startling offensive production will be rewarded tonight with an All-Star selection.

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