Boston Red Sox studs and duds so far in the 2022 season

BOSTON, MA - MAY 03: Michael Wacha #52 of the Boston Red Sox pitches in the second inning of a game against the Los Angeles Angels at Fenway Park on May 3, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - MAY 03: Michael Wacha #52 of the Boston Red Sox pitches in the second inning of a game against the Los Angeles Angels at Fenway Park on May 3, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

Red Sox studs and duds for the early season sample

The Boston Red Sox have been a disappointment – an understatement – as they approach 30 games into their apparent season-long battle for last place with the Baltimore Orioles. Boston does have the equally retched O’s beat in the all-important salary competition by a 4-1 margin.

If you perceive this as another “hit piece” on the Red Sox, I congratulate you on your perceptive qualities. If bad news regarding the local nine causes personal trouble, I would suggest you stop, find a DVD of the 2004 playoffs, and withdraw to a shell of comfort.

Now for the studs and duds of this dumpster fire.

DUD:Bobby Dalbec is hitting .440. Oh, wait, my bad, that is Dalbec’s OPS! His batting average is .139. Bobby’s 31 wRC+, 31.5 K%, and below-average defensive play are illuminating. How bad is it? Boston recalled Franchy Cordero as a further attack on our sensibilities.

Stud: Xander Bogaerts continues to put up impressive numbers as he counts down the days left in his sentence before opt-out. Bogaerts has been down this last place rabbit hole in the past and can probably give some comfort that there are better days ahead. At least for Bogey and his soon-to-be new deal.

Stud: The ace is Michael Wacha, who is now on the IL after a 3-0, 1.38/3.88 start. Wacha is beginning to erase the bad decisions of the 2021 season – Garrett Richards and Martin Perez. Perez, quite naturally, is now tossing great ball for the Rangers.

DUD: The fans have turned on Trevor Story, who has become symbolic of this team’s failure. Story signed late, had just a few at-bats, and was tossed into the fire: excellent defense and a propensity for not getting the big hit. Story is starting to get some unfavorable comparisons to Carl Crawford, but for me, it is more J.D. Drew.

STUD: Just put Garrett Whitlock at closer. The bullpen erases leads, especially late in the game, and Whitlock is the remedy. A 1.7 BB/9 and 12.0 K/9 for the season. Few walks and K’s – perfect to close.

Duds: For the sake of saving server space, we have Christian Vazquez, Enrique Hernandez, Jackie Bradley Jr., Christian Arroyo, and Alex Verdugo. All five have remarkably underperformed offensively. For Vazquez and Hernandez, that will impact impending free agency, and none of the five seems to be able to catch fire. All could be available at a massive fire sale.

Stud: Rafael Devers continues to provide some offense in a lineup that allows the opposition a bit of leeway to pitch around Raffy. Devers has just one error and a .988 fielding percentage in an OMG moment.

STUD/DUD: J.D. Martinez is another player who will be a free agent. Martinez is hitting as expected, but his 5.4 BB% is near a career-low. Expect Martinez to be traded if the Red Sox plunge continues.

Studs: Separating the wheat from the chaff is today’s idiom to describe the bullpen. For fans of earned run averages, Austin Davis, Ryan Brasier, and Matt Strahm all tune in at 2.70. They have been reasonably steady and look good compared to a few that have melted down. Now flip it around.

DUDS: Jake Diekman has a 7.4 BB/9 and 14.0 K/9. Diekman is a D & D pitcher – either deadly or dangerous. Dead money, let me introduce you to Matt Barnes. I thought Kutter Crawford had turned it around with three solid innings against Tampa. Wrong again.

STUD/DUD: Hansel Robles and Hirokazu Sawamura. Robles is trending to dud and Sawamura to another lousy signing. Robles was the presumptive closer for a while, which is now very questionable. Sawamura has great stuff that does not render the expected results.

Stud: Nathan Eovaldi is holding together what passes for a rotation. Eovaldi is another free agent in waiting, building a case for a cushy three-year deal somewhere. Meanwhile, Mr. Nasty will become the leader of the no-decision club.

DUD: Maybe Nick Pivetta’s last start ( 6 IP, no runs) will be a harbinger of good days ahead. Otherwise, it has been brutal for the quick working Pivetta.

DUD: Tough to put Tanner Houck as a dud since he has been a yo-yo regarding his role. Just put him in the rotation since he is capable of being this generation’s Ike Delock.

Stud: Rich Hill gets the senior citizen pass at age 42. The lefty has given Boston an excellent 4-5 inning jump start and is now on the IL.

DUD: Chaim Bloom put most of this together and suffers the consequences. If there is a miraculous turnaround over the next few months, and Bloom is a hero.

DUD: Alex Cora has to juggle slumps, IL issues, COVID, and Dollar Shave Club and try to squeeze out some results. So far, all the buttons pushed have laughed at Cora. By all accounts, Cora has the respect of players and management support. Still, it is tough to fire players.

DUD: John Henry has spread out across the sports business, and I get a bit of neglect towards the flagship of the whole kaboodle. The Red Sox are his real trophy wife, and she (the fans) needs nice things.

Next. Prospect Watch: No-hitters and home run streaks. dark

That’s my list, and it is certainly open to debate, but things can change, and hopefully, they will. There may have been some omitted either via neglect or the lack of a base of statistics and performance. Maybe I’m in the dud category since, at my age, the stud category is long gone. The temptation is to write off the entire team, but some have not disappointed while a far too large group has.