Boston Red Sox at the one-third mark

May 30, 2016; Baltimore, MD, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Steven Wright (35) pitches during the first inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
May 30, 2016; Baltimore, MD, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Steven Wright (35) pitches during the first inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports /
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May 29, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts (2) hits an RBI out during the eleventh inning in a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. The Red Sox won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
May 29, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts (2) hits an RBI out during the eleventh inning in a game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. The Red Sox won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports /

Infield

What more could you want from an offense? Dustin Pedroia, Travis Shaw, and Hanley Ramirez are all in the vicinity of .300 and then comes Xander Bogaerts and his Sliver Slugger from 2015. That may be replaced by a batting title. Looking for a negative? Home runs!

Woe is RSN when no one jumps out with Butch Hobson type clout with a passel of long balls. So what? Meaningless, as this group is an extra-base machine that shows no signs of slowing down. Just look at the doubles and triples totals that are easily translated into RBI and runs. But what about defense?

HanRam was a big question mark and the question of his defensive capabilities has been answered with a seamless transition to first. Pedroia is back to his typical gritty second base defensive maneuvers and Bogaerts just keeps improving. Just wondering about Bogaerts, is he still too tall to play short? You go to the metrics and check catch-all UZR/150 and the only position in the middle of the defensive pack is third, and after bearing witness to Pablo Sandoval, anything is an improvement.

The Red Sox infield has some nice depth with Josh Rutledge, former PTBNL Marco Hernandez, and the potential of Brock Holt filling in where necessary. The very good news is Ramirez can take a day off and visit the zoo with his kids as Shaw can trot across the diamond and fill in at first.

First Third Surprise: Ramirez and Shaw. Ramirez for defense and Shaw for consistent hitting.

First Third Disappointment: Sandoval.

First Third Results: Excellent.

Second Third Prognosis: Excellent. Expect the ride to continue.

Next: Outfield