Now that the Boston Red Sox have fought their way back to a .500 record, it’s time to look at the opening of their next series as a new beginning.
Red Sox Nation celebrated like it was Game 7 of the World Series on Wednesday night as Chris Sale struck out 14 and pitched an immaculate inning, Jackie Bradley Jr. made the home run robbery of the century and Andrew Benintendi would hit a game-winning home run in the 12th inning, giving Boston a 2-1 victory.
The reason the win was such a huge ordeal is because of the fact that it got the squad back to .500. You’d have to go back to the second game of the season if you want to see the last time this team had a .500 record. They had a losing record for over a month, including a time where they were as much as 7 games under .500. Not great.
Sale was struggling mightily, Nathan Eovaldi hit the shelf, and Mookie Betts wasn’t hitting. J.D. Martinez, Xander Bogaerts and Mitch Moreland were the only hitters contributing. All of that to go with the biggest worry coming into the year; the bullpen, which was incredibly shaky. It wasn’t looking very promising for this 2019 squad, and all us fans could do is just remind ourselves that its a long season, but after a while that phrase gets old, and this team just has to start playing better. They did just that.
It all started in St. Pete when the Red Sox went into the Trop and swept the first place Tampa Bay Rays. After dropping 4 of their next 6 games, they would sweep the Oakland A’s at home, win 3 out of four in Chicago and grab 2 of 3 in Baltimore. Flashback to April 17 when the Red Sox got swept in the Bronx, they’ve gone 13-6 since, getting all the way back to .500.
One huge thing we need to talk about here is Sale. The ace was performing so poorly and unlike himself it got to the point where he said it was embarrassing to his family. How has he been since that statement? In 26 innings, he’s struck out 42 hitters with an ERA of 1.73. When Sale showed many signs of his vintage self returning in the gem he pitched Wednesday night, you knew the wait was over. The Chris Sale we all know and love is back.
Mookie wasn’t his MVP self to start the season off. He knew it, and everyone else knew it. Betts has raised his batting average up from .192 on April 19 to .290 with his OPS now over .900 as well.
Martinez has been killing it, along with Bogaerts, and Benintendi has begun to do his thing as well. Michael Chavis has had an unreal start to his to his major league career, and the bullpen has really stepped their game up, with Matt Barnes becoming an elite strikeout pitcher thus far. Marcus Walden and Brandon Workman have come out of absolutely nowhere and been dominating. The rotation is a little shorthanded at the moment with Eovaldi and David Price on the shelf but they should be back relatively soon. Everything is starting to shape out.
More from Red Sox News
- Former MLB All-Star slams Red Sox for ’embarrassing’ treatment of Rafael Devers
- Red Sox invited group of players you’ve probably never heard of to Spring Training
- Jeter Downs’ official departure will continue to haunt Red Sox
- Aaron Judge’s Yankees return a brutal reminder of what could have been for Red Sox
- Red Sox should capitalize on Yankees’ latest roster move
The Red Sox will return home to Fenway on Friday and take on the Mariners. You may just think this is any other weekend, but its not. Friday night’s game will be an incredibly poetic one, and you may be wondering why. Let’s go back to the beginning of the season on March 28th. Who did Boston play? The Mariners. What was their record? 0-0. What is their record now more than a month later on May 10th going into tonight’s game? 19-19. Seattle is also at .500, with a 20-20 record. If you don’t know where I’m going with this by now, let’s just say that the season starts now. The last 38 games were just a warm-up.
I look at this game tonight as a new beginning, a new chapter. For Betts, Martinez, Bogaerts, and Barnes, they should want to continue their success and not forget about what they’ve done over the last 38 games. Bradley, on the other hand, should forget about the month of April and start of May. Its time to retcon all the failure that he’s had up until this point, and get back to his ALCS MVP form.
Its time to continue the success over the last 19 games, and keep playing winning baseball. Like I mentioned before, everything coming up to this point has been a warm-up. This team is just getting ready. As Alex Cora stated, I’m not saying the season starts on Friday, but the season starts on Friday.