Brayan Bello is becoming the ace the Red Sox need

Bello's consistency and production have drastically improved in 2023
Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox
Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox / Gaelen Morse/GettyImages

The Boston Red Sox find themselves in a do-or-die portion of the season heading into New York. Brayan Bello will start the first game of the series. Chris Sale has finally returned to the rotation that was being led by a second-year starter in Bello. The Wild Card is within their reach. However, this series could make or break Boston's late-season push for the playoffs. A series that both teams desperately need to win against their rivals.

Bello gets the ball in game one of the series in the Bronx, facing a Yankees lineup that struggled to produce in Atlanta. New York only scored three runs in the three-game series against the Braves. In the final two games of the series, they were shutout, only accumulating five hits. It is the perfect time for Bello to be facing this lineup. In addition, the Red Sox are coming off a tough series loss to the Nationals and are looking to fight their way back into the Wild Card conversation.

Brayan Bello's Red Sox development

In his first season in the MLB, Bello struggled with consistency and command. The first 11 starts for Bello ended with a record of 2-8 with a 4.71 ERA. However, in Bello's 20 starts this season he is 8-7, which means in nine more starts in 2023 he has yet to surpass his loss total from a year ago. Also, Bello's strikeout to walk ratio was a topic of conversation heading into the season. Currently, that ratio sits at 3.2 with 96 strikeouts to only 30 walks. Quite the difference from a season ago when he had 55 strikeouts to 27 walks.

Not only has his command dramatically improved, but his durability and consistency have been critical for a thin Red Sox rotation. All the injuries to the bullpen and starting rotation left Boston looking for answers and Bello answered the call. At the moment, Bello leads the Red Sox in innings pitched with 113.1 and WAR at 2.9. The two statistics combined show how integral he has been to the success Boston has had this season.

Bryan Bello's toughest challenge yet

Heading into Yankee Stadium is never an easy task, especially not when their backs are against the wall. The lineup has sputtered this week, but it is seemingly back to full strength, with Aaron Judge ready to face Boston for the first time this season. A tough test that comes after one of Bello's shakiest starts of the season, where he went just four and two-thirds against the Tigers. Detroit managed eight hits and four runs off of Bello in his seventh loss of the season. Bello will need to bounce back against the Yankees and continue his strong play against New York this year.

On the season, Bello has faced the Yankees twice going seven innings in both starts. In those two starts, Bello has a 1-0 record with a 1.93 ERA. Additionally, Bello has struck out 11 New York hitters in that span, to five walks. Overall, the Red Sox starter has dominated New York when he has gotten the chance this season. Alex Cora hopes that Bello's dominance continues leading to a much-needed win over a rival.