The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry loses a chapter in 2022
Welp, in what could only be deemed as the worst-case scenario becoming a reality, MLB has canceled another pair of series from the 2022 regular season. This means that Opening Day is now pushed to April 14th, also known as the day before Jackie Robinson Day. For the Red Sox, the team has already lost their first meetings with Tampa and Baltimore and now we can add the Yankees to that list.
Canceling games is already miserable but losing divisional matchups makes it even worse. Now the Red Sox will be losing nine possible meetings with AL East rivals, six of which would’ve been at Fenway Park. The games won’t be made up and that just adds more pressure to the rest of the clashes that Boston will have with the rest of their foes in 2022.
As I mentioned above, this is the second set of matchups that are getting canceled. While losing three games against the Yankees is bad enough, the Red Sox will also miss out on three games in Detroit. I think we all remember the first time Boston made their way to the Motor City this past season between the snow and the blaring horn, but those are games the team needs for their record.
I will give the Tigers credit as they made some serious moves to beef up their roster by adding star shortstop Javier Baez and former Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodriguez. Both additions should make them a much more formidable foe but a few new faces don’t make a contender. With a majority of Boston’s 2021 roster returning, they should be able to handle whatever Detroit throws at them.
As for the Yankees, we definitely remember how their season ended. Nathan Eovaldi throwing gas, Xander Bogaerts and Kyle Schwarber going yard, and former New York prospect Garrett Whitlock slamming the door shut. I think for many members of Red Sox Nation, that Wild Card Game victory may as well have been a World Series crown.
The thing is, Boston went on to eliminate the AL East Champion Rays and then bring the Houston Astros within two games of elimination in the ALCS. The team far exceeded any and all expectations that were heaped upon them but we don’t quite know what to expect in 2022. Now that we’re losing incredibly important games from the schedule, things are going to be far more stressful.
There is a contingent of the fanbase that always crows about April games being unimportant, and that may be one of the dumbest things I’ve ever heard. You can’t win the division in April but you can sure as hell lose it.
How many times do we see the bottom feeder teams damn near already eliminated when the calendar flips to May? Having a bad start to the season can hamper the entire campaign just as much as a hot start can set the tone for the whole Postseason run.
I have been pro-player this entire saga and today’s actions by MLB further push me in that direction. The owners have used their media resources to turn the narrative against the players and I’ve already seen people taking the bait. One side of this initiated the lockout.
One side of this was silent for over 40 days. And one said hasn’t negotiated in good faith until recently and then throws a wrench in the talks at the last second. Here’s a clue, it’s not the players.
There isn’t a single damn reason that games should be canceled. The league implemented these arbitrary deadlines for negotiations and then made sure that those dates would be passed. They then leak things to the media to make the MLBPA look like the villain. It’s all part of the narrative. It’s also no coincidence that games are getting canceled so easily in April considering it’s MLB’s least profitable month.
This entire mess could’ve been avoided had the league not locked out the players, negotiated in good faith, and actually listened. Now the fans are suffering and when the season does eventually take place the players will suffer. Expect injuries and overall miserable quality of play with the lack of proper training time.
For the Red Sox, they need as much time as possible to ramp up their roster as they have plenty of veterans in the lineup. Making sure the bats are hot and the arms are loose is of utmost importance to Alex Cora and his coaching staff. Losing that time as well as losing important games against rivals is writing a recipe for a rough 2022. Hopefully, AC can get the fellas focused and in a hurry, we’re gonna need it.