The Boston Red Sox have been looking for someone to take the reigns of the team this season. Little did they know it would be their budding third baseman.
This season has been one hell of a rollercoaster ride for the Red Sox. There has been massive highs and massive lows and we aren’t even through May yet. One thing that has seemingly become a constant bright spot has been the play of Rafael Devers. The third baseman has been a force for the Red Sox and a big reason for their success in 2019.
More from Red Sox News
- Red Sox Nation deserves far more from Fenway Sports Group
- Bizarre trade deadline comes back to haunt Red Sox after Nathan Eovaldi departure
- Red Sox’ Moneyball-style offseason continues with Corey Kluber contract
- Rich Hill’s Red Sox departure puts him within striking distance of unique MLB record
- Red Sox offseason takes another nasty hit with Nathan Eovaldi departure
Raffy has really come into his own over at the hot corner and his bat is the hottest in the lineup. More often than not this season when the Red Sox need a big bat, it’s come at the hands of Devers. Now, this season has been perfect for the young third baseman but he has put in the work to turn things around.
I can admit that at the open of the season I was soured on Raffy’s play after he racked up a pile of errors in the blink of an eye. In the first 31 games of the season, he had 9 errors under his belt, well on his way to crushing his 24 from the season prior. Thanks to a strong work ethic he hasn’t made an error since the beginning of May.
He won’t be perfect in the field for the rest of the season that would be a miracle and just impossible with this game. But Rafael is putting in the work and doing what he can to make sure he isn’t the reason the Red Sox lose a game. He’s also making sure he uses every at-bat to give Boston a chance to win.
Since that May 2nd game against the White Sox where he made his last error in the field, he has exploded at the plate having a .377 BA and adding 25 RBIs. It’s just mind-boggling to see Raffy doing what he’s doing especially with how his season began. I even called for him to get benched after the errors began to pile up but he has absolutely shut me up.
Devers is becoming the most consistent hitter in the lineup for the Red Sox. Whether it be a key base-hit or walk, or even a bomb off of Justin Verlander, he’s getting the job done. With a season in turmoil, Boston needs every positive they can find, and Raffy is exactly that. Alex Cora has seen the changes in his third baseman and couldn’t be happier with the efforts and evolution from Devers.
"“He’s a force,” Cora said. “He’s what we envisioned. Not too many swings-and-misses, he’s controlling the strike zone and now he’s hitting the ball in the air.”"
HItting the homer off of Verlander yesterday afternoon was a major confidence boost for Devers. He’s already showing that he deserves and has earned his right to be on this roster and by taking down one of the games best pitchers, he is just adding more to his argument. With many of the Sox hitters on a rollercoaster having a constant in the order has been a Godsend for Cora.
"“He put a great swing on (Verlander),” Cora said. “Like I said, it was going to be a challenge because (Verlander) keeps attacking him in certain spots. Everybody knows where he’s going so I don’t have to like hide it. (Devers) made some adjustments and hit the homer.”"
The Red Sox have a big opportunity coming up in their schedule with a short stand against a sluggish Cleveland team followed by a 4-game trip to the Bronx. If they can keep Devers hot and others can also begin to contribute then the Red Sox can put a dent in that 6.5 game mark. Taking 2/3 from Cleveland is the first step, they don’t need to sweep but they need the series.
If the Sox can take the Cleveland series and storm into Yankee Stadium fired up there is a hell of a chance that they can erase much of the deficit they find themselves in. As it goes right now that momentum all hinges on Rafael Devers. He is the Red Sox best chance at adding more to the win column and marching towards October.