Red Sox Series Preview: Battle of the Disappointing Sox
Aug 19, 2015; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox first baseman Travis Shaw (47) runs the bases after hitting a home run against the Cleveland Indians in the second inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports
Red Sox Players to Watch
Much has been made of Travis Shaw‘s uncanny success at Fenway Park this season. In 14 games there and 63 plate appearances, Shaw has pounded opposing pitching to the tune of .448/.492/.845 batting line with six homers. In stark contrast, Shaw has posted just a .091/.160/.091 batting line in 25 plate appearances away from Fenway Park this season. Red Sox fans will certainly be watching to see if Shaw can translate his recent success at Fenway in the next two road series away from Fenway.
While the White Sox slugger Abreu has started hitting the ball with more authority since the All-Star break, Abreu’s improvement pales in comparison with the numbers put up by David Ortiz in the second half of the season. After a .231/.326/.435 batting line in the first half with 15 homers and 43 RBI, Ortiz has pounded pitchers in the second half for a .344/.419/.680 batting line with 11 homers and 33 RBI in just 34 games. With 492 career homers, Red Sox fans will be focusing on whether Ortiz can get to the 500 homer plateau before the end of this disappointing campaign.
Jackie Bradley, Jr. is another player who knows something about second half success. After struggling mightily through a dismal five for 50 stretch to start the season, Bradley Jr. has turned on the hitting jets to post an otherworldly .344/.431/.754 batting line for the month of August, including a stretch of 11 straight hits that went for extra bases. Bradley Jr.’s .257/.347/.535 for the season are numbers more along the line of what Red Sox fans have been hoping for during Bradley’s entire time in Boston. While fans can’t expect the 1.185 OPS posted all the time, Bradley is bringing his offensive game up to the level of his stellar defensive prowess which the Red Sox hope will continue in Chicago and for years to come.
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