Red Sox Honorable Mentions
The next two pitchers may share a name but we’ve seen two very different starts to 2021 for them. First off, I’m going to gush over Garrett Whitlock for a bit and how much of a damn stud he is. Chaim Bloom picked him up from the Yankees in the Rule 5 Draft and up to this point, it may be the move of the season. Boston’s bullpen has been lights-out through the first week of the campaign and a big part of that has been thanks to Whitlock. Had Vazqy and J.D. not been absolutely murdering the ball, he would’ve made the full list this week.
The righty has pitched 5.1 innings in two games so far with a 0.00 ERA, 8K’s, 0BB’s, and just 2 hits. He has been absolutely electric and it’s been said by AC himself that the team has big hopes and goals for the reliever down the road. I’m not sure many had expected him to make the Opening Day roster but considering he went 1-1 in spring training with a 1.00 ERA, 12K’s, and 0BB’s in 9.0 innings of work. You make a statement like that and you better be on that roster come April 1st.
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Now, onto the less fun Garrett to talk about. Garrett Richards has not made a good impression so far in his short time in Boston. I’m sure many of you are already yelling that it was just one start and I need to give him a chance, and I will. That’s why I do this series once a week. However, after a very rocky spring training and a massacre against the Orioles in his first start, I had to include him as an honorable mention for the down list.
Thanks to that drubbing by Baltimore he’s currently 0-1 with a 27.00 ERA. He only worked two innings in that game while giving up seven runs on six hits. He also walked a pair while striking about two as well. He’s had an injury history a mile long but was a cheap signing by Bloom at just $8.5M for the year. The definition of a low risk/high reward pick up if he can stay healthy and find his command. I didn’t include him on the actual list because I didn’t have expectations for him, so he can’t really disappoint me.
This Red Sox club is showing some serious promise after a rough Opening Day weekend. They’ve since won four straight and are sitting atop the AL East alongside the Orioles. With two more games in Baltimore this weekend that power balance could fully shift toward Boston. It’s still too early to tell just what type of team we have here but base on the first week I think they’re far more dangerous than most expected them to be.