Red Sox Strut – Dustin Pedroia and Rick Porcello

Aug 14, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia (15) singles against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the third inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 14, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia (15) singles against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the third inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports /

The weekly article series where we examine the two players who deserve to strut their stuff for the Boston Red Sox. This week – Pedroia and Porcello.

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.

It could have been an amazing week for the Red Sox. There is no doubt that it was a still a good one, but losing two disappointing games to the J.V. squad that the Yankees have been sending out on the field is a bit concerning. Still, Boston was able to win five out of seven games and keep pace in the AL East while also remaining in the wildcard hunt. The bats weren’t exactly lighting it up against New York, but they seriously came alive against a horrible Arizona Diamondbacks team. The pitching was definitely better this week, but it’s not like all of their issues in that department have been solved.


I know, I know … I didn’t choose Mookie Betts. I’m not trying to troll Red Sox Nation with this selection either. Sure, Betts’ performance on Sunday was nothing short of extraordinary, but one game alone cannot ensure that a Strutter will be strutting. Yes, it was an incredible performance, but Betts didn’t have an awesome week overall. He was good, but Dustin Pedroia was better.

I do want to mention that David Ortiz and Hanley Ramirez both had some big games this week as well. The offense played very well scoring 45 runs total this week – that’s better that six runs per game. But no one was as consistent as Pedroia.

Pedroia had at least one hit in all seven games and had two or more hits in five of them. Five of those hits were doubles. His average was an insane .484 and he added seven RBI. Those are some intense numbers for the thirty-two year old who seems to have been forgotten amongst the exciting youngsters the Sox have to offer to fans now.

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This all came during a week in which he was moved to the leadoff spot in order to allow Betts to get even more RBI opportunities, and Pedroia took it in stride. In fact, he is thriving in that leadoff role. His OBP is .374 and his average is .308.

The Boston Herald’s Alex Speier wrote about Pedroia’s monster season thus far and how important he is to this team. Speier’s closing line sums it up nicely: “Pedroia is not an MVP candidate this year, nor is he the most valuable member on his team. Yet his value to the 2016 Red Sox remains enormous, particularly in his current role as lineup catalyst.”

His leadership, positive yet fiery attitude and love for the game can be taken for granted. He has been a consistent force since he stepped on the field for Boston, and this year is more of the same. Time to Strut Dustin…the Laser Show Strut!

PITCHER: Rick Porcello

The pitching was much better this week. Despite losing Steven Wright to the DL after a bizarre decision by John Farrell, it was time for the rest of the rotation to step up. The man that took over for Wright in his regular spot was Clay Buchholz. Predictably, that didn’t go so well. However, the other members of the staff stepped up for the most part.

David Price was much better against the Diamondbacks despite giving up ten hits. He was able to go eight innings and tossed eight strikeouts. Price needs to get on roll now.

Drew Pomeranz also greatly improved this week in his two starts. He was only able to get through 5.1 innings against the Yanks, but only allowed one run on six hits and a walk in a no decision. His start on Monday in Cleveland was even better – in fact, it was his best start so far and his first victory in a Sox uniform. This is the Pomeranz that Boston thought they traded for and will need going forward down the stretch.

Eduardo Rodriguez also got back on track with a quality start against Arizona. He only allowed one run on three hits and one walk in seven innings. E-Rod’s ERA is down to 5.43 as he continues to improve on his first half of the season.

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No one really stood out in the bullpen. Craig Kimbrel did have a couple saves, but he also struggled versus the Yanks forcing John Farrell to remove his closer from the game to allow Matt Barnes to finish things out. Brad Ziegler had a rough outing against NY as well which blew Rodriguez’ great start.

That leaves the man who is arguably the best starter for the Red Sox to Strut his way to Baltimore. I’m of course referring to Rick Porcello. Porcello won both of his starts this week and continues to roll. He went eight innings against NY allowing just two runs and added another seven inning outing against the D-Backs in which he allowed just one run. He added ten total strikeouts on the week.

Porcello’s ERA is 3.30, and he’s added another 129 strikeouts to his impressive stat line in 2016. He is tied for the most wins in the AL with 16. There is even some chatter about him being a possible Cy Young candidate. It’s been an incredible season for Porcello, and an unlikely one at that. Sox fans were down on Porcello after his first season with the team, but his value this year is undeniable. He is a breath of fresh air during a season in which the Sox have struggled on the mound. And this week…he gets to Strut!