Boston Red Sox bullpen is shining at the perfect time
By Tyler Mason
With only a few weeks left in the regular season, the Boston Red Sox bullpen has been dominant during the race for the division crown.
In baseball, the month of September can either be a team’s downfall trying to make it into the postseason, or a dream come true as they pop champagne for their regular season success.
For the Boston Red Sox, everything has gone their way so far this month. With clutch hitting, dominant starting pitching and most importantly, their bullpen has been light out.
One thing people need to know is that if you don’t have a stellar bullpen, you aren’t going to be successful. You saw it earlier this season for the Sox as it seemed like a new guy from the ‘pen was blowing a lead every night.
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So far this month, pitchers Matt Barnes, Joe Kelly, Craig Kimbrel, Robbie Ross Jr., Robby Scott, Junichi Tazawa, Koji Uehara, and Brad Ziegler have combined for 37 innings pitched with an ERA of 0.00. Something you’d like to see, especially when you have a small lead in the A.L. East.
It’s always great to see some of the new call up’s show success in the big leagues like Joe Kelly and Robby Scott. For Kelly, it’s time for him to prove to the Red Sox front office that he can contribute to this team. For Scott, he’s just happy to be in the Show. The 27-year old went through five years in the minors, patiently waiting for the one call where his dream comes true. After that call came his way, he never looked back. The sample size is small for Scott, who is delighted to finally get the opportunity to help a team make a successful postseason push.
One other player that should be recognized is Junichi Tazawa. Tazawa was once on the verge of getting released this season after he simply couldn’t hold a lead in any way, shape, or form. In August, Tazawa had a pitiful ERA of 9.64, nothing to really brag about to say the least. But so far in September, he has been dominant just like any other pitcher from the ‘pen.
With what we are seeing from the Sox bullpen night in and night out, it seems like everyone is playing with a chip on their shoulder. They seem tired of hearing how the bullpen can’t hold a lead or how the Sox will blow it in September because of the lack of clutch performances from the bullpen. Now is the perfect time to shut those people up.
You saw it the past 2 seasons with the Kansas City Royals. If you have a dominant bullpen, you have a good chance to go far in to the playoffs.
It’s that simple.
Don’t have the starting rotation think that they need to throw 9 innings to secure a W. Have them know that when their day is done, they can rely on the guys in the ‘pen to hold onto the lead.
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We only have a few weeks of September baseball left and if the Sox bullpen can keep these lights out performances up, you may be seeing this team play in October.