Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts has been on fire since moving to the leadoff spot. With the postseason on the way, can he keep this performance up?
Xander Bogaerts has not had a good summer. In July and August, the shortstop for the Boston Red Sox was hitting a poor .198. He needed a change to try and get that spark in his step back.
When Bogaerts was promoted to leadoff hitter, the change seemed to help him find his swing again. Bogaerts has hit leadoff in 14 consecutive games and 16 of the last 17 games.
Bogaerts has been as hot as ever lately, going 9-for-23 (.391) during this six game hitting streak he is on. He has reached base in nine consecutive games. Bogaerts feels as if he has gotten his swagger back.
"“I’m feeling pretty good, ” Bogaerts told reporters, per Masslive.com. “I’m seeing the ball real well. I said I was feeling better two weeks back. So it’s all the work that I’m putting right now.”"
With the season coming to a close, the Red Sox need this Bogaerts now more than ever. With the Yankees only 2.5 half games behind, Farrell and his boys need offense. Right now, Bogaerts is one who is providing that offense.
In a 10-7 win against the Blue Jays last Wednesday to bring Boston’s magic number down to two, Bogaerts went 3-for-5 with a three-run homer, four RBIs and two runs. The following night against the Houston Astros, which resulted in a 12-2 loss, Bogaerts kept up his hot streak going 2-for-4 with a run batted in.
With the American League East crown coming down to the final weekend, the Red Sox need Bogaerts’ offense more than ever. Manager John Farrell has taken notice of the strides that Bogaerts has made in the leadoff position.
"“Since he’s moved to that spot because of some injuries, I think really come to life,” said Farrell. “His on-base percentage has climbed significantly. We’re seeing better at-bats, more consistent, hard contact.”"
The Red Sox are limping into this year’s playoffs. If Bogaerts can keep up this tear he has been on, maybe he can be the one to finally clinch this American League East crown and bring the Sox into the playoffs with some positive momentum.