The Boston Red Sox are coming off a seven game home stand in which they did exactly what they needed to do. They went 5-2 by splitting a two game set with Baltimore, handling the Pirates to make-up the rain out on the second game of the season, and took three out of four against the Rays.
You can’t really ask for anything more out of a team that had to deal with a crazy case of the flu, a slight case of the injury bug, and not to mention, the players placed on the bereavement and paternity lists. But there are still some tangible concerns to have with this team
I understand that the bullpens ERA is 1.84. But I would honestly think you were lying to me if you told me you trust anyone other than Craig Kimbrel at this point, and everyone knows that Kimbrel needs to be in a traditional save situation to be effective. Others need to step up on a semi-consistent basis to prove that they can be trusted. Carson Smith and Tyler Thornburg don’t seem like they are very close to being able to show that they can do so. Remember this isn’t about getting through the Tampa Bay Rays in one close game in April, it’s being able to be counted on down the stretch. Matt Barnes seems to have the trust of John Farrell, but after almost blowing a four run lead in Toronto Tuesday night, questions still remain.
Who would have guessed that Pablo Sandoval would be leading the Red Sox in home runs? Probably just as many people who thought Mookie Betts, Hanley Ramirez, Xander Bogaerts, and Jackie Bradley Jr. would be combined for a whopping one home run. Though they are leading the league in doubles, this Red Sox line-up needs more power from its best hitters to help fill the void left by David Ortiz.
The Red Sox finally found the ace they’ve been looking for since they tried to low-ball Jon Lester, in Chris Sale, yet the lack of run support does pose a problem. It doesn’t seem like many people think its realistic to expect another Cy Young season out of Rick Porcello, and his last start didn’t help that cause. David Price looks to be progressing, but until he shows that he is 100% healthy, I still think there is a chance that this process ends on an operating table. Eduardo Robriguez, Drew Pomeranz and Steven Wright will have the chance early this season to battle for the last two spots in the rotation once (or if) Price comes back, but none of them have really separated themselves from the pack.
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