Red Sox Review: Evaluating the first third of the 2018 season
By Rick McNair
Baseball is a numbers game and the numbers get increasingly notable with further refinement of metrics. But before climbing into the metrics rabbit hole is the most important number – winning games. Most wins in baseball.
The major accomplishment in the offseason was perking up the offense. Did that work? The Red Sox of 2017 were dead last in the American League in home runs. The lineup was lethargic by Red Sox standards. No more. Offensively the Red Sox are scoring and hitting home runs.
The home runs are accumulating at a team record pace with new addition J.D. Martinez doing what was expected. Martinez apparently has energized the rest of the lineup with Mookie Betts especially being invigorated as Betts makes another run at AL Most Valuable Player.
The offense is ranked second in the AL with a 10.4 fWAR trailing behind you know who in New York. Take a stat traditional or metric and you will find the Red Sox leading or within statistical hailing distance – batting average, wOBA, wRC+, runs, home runs – quite an accomplishment based on 2017.
There is no reason why this should not continue and even possibly improve. This is an offensive juggernaut and it will be a fun summer as they blast away. The good news – very good news – is the Red Sox have the pitching to avoid a plethora of 12-10 games.