Thoughts I thought: Boston Red drop four game set against the New York Yankees
Jezz, that’s not the way the Boston Red Sox wanted to enter the All-Star break.
Losers of three in a row on the west coast, the Sox headed into this series hoping to get a bit of good feeling going into the All-Star break. The Boston Red Sox have been a team treading water all season, one decimated by injuries that was hovering at and slightly above and below the .500 mark of the season. Despite never being completely out of the wild-card picture (and we as Red Sox fans can thank the new two team wild-card rule for that), the Boston Red Sox patch-work line-up and rotation has turned this into a team that certainly has more questions than answers.
As this was only the second series of the season against the hated New York Yankees, the Boston Red Sox were presented with an opportunity to answer some questions and legitimize their playoff standing at the All-Star break.
Instead, they exit Fenway Park on Sunday night with more questions than answers.
Victims of slow starts in each game of the series, the Sox dropped Sunday night’s game 7-3 and dropped the series 3 games to 1. The Boston Red Sox fell back to .500 and 9 1/2 games back of the American League East leading Yankees.
Winning the series could have given the Sox something to build on as the reinforcements come in during the second half of the season and the Boston Red Sox couldn’t get it done.
After the jump, the triumphant return of “Thoughts I thought”
- Adrian Gonzalez might have had the quietest 18 game hitting streak that I have ever seen in all my years of watching baseball. He needed it too. Adrian was having one of his worst seasons as a professional and the hitting streak helped boost his average to .283. Still, it’s hard to shake Friday night’s chance for Gonzalez where he failed to come through. With two outs and runners on first and second, Gonzalez came to bat with the Boston Red Sox trailing by two runs. He was 3-4 for the game with 2 doubles up until that point and it was setting up for a perfect moment for Adrian Gonzalez to turn the tables on his season. Instead, he grounded out softly to first. A 3-5 effort with a key out created in the clutch seems like something that Adrian Gonzaelz would do so it’s hard for me to pretend I was surprised. It certainly is a long-cry from when I wrote last year that Adrian seemed like the best clutch hitter that the Sox had since Manny. Also, leaving the game in the second inning due to everyone’s favorite injury “Flu-like symptoms” was the perfect way for the strangest 18 game hitting streak in baseball to end.
- I don’t know much about baseball, but I think it’s good baseball strategy to not give up 14 runs in the first innings of games during a four game series. The Sox did that and promptly lost 3 of the games. The amount of people surprised about that result is approximately equal to the percent chance that the Red Sox have at swinging a trade that sends John Lackey away forever. Translation: not a lot.
- Good stat from Ian Tasso on Twitter:
All the good from Gonzo’s 18-gm hitting streak has been undone by Salty’s sudden ineptitude with his noodle bat. 1-14 w 10K this series #sox
— Ian Tasso (@Tasso_SPORTS) July 9, 2012
- Now that the first half of the season is over, I think it’s time that we can officially name Jon Lester the biggest disappointment of the Red Sox first half of the season. First of all, he is supposed to be the number one pitcher of the staff and he is currently giving the Boston Red Sox a 4.49 ERA and 1.35 WHIP which is way below what is expected from the supposed best pitcher of the staff. It’s not like he can’t put it together as he already has 10 quality starts this season, it’s just that he has nights like Sunday where he gets shelled. It’s disturbing coming off “Beer, chicken and video games” that Jon Lester hasn’t worked hard to be more consistent this season because at the end of the day that’s what a team is wants from it’s best starter. Consistency that night in and night out they will pitch well enough to give their team a chance to win. Jon Lester hasn’t done that this season and that is going to have to change.
- It’s cliche, but every series is vital for the Red Sox from here on out. Any time they drop a series is another game deeper into the hole this team falls. Sadly, it only gets tougher for this team here on out. Almost 75% of their games are against teams that are .500 or better and most of them are on the road. Fenway hasn’t been kind to the Red Sox this year, but I still feel like they would rather be at home than on the road when chasing a playoff spot.
 The quote: “It has reached a point now where Red Sox fans expect good things to happen whenever he steps up to the plate. In the ninth inning of the game Monday night against the Baltimore Orioles, the Red Sox trailed by 1 run entering the ninth inning with El Chupacabra due up 4th in the inning. Being on the Capital Beltway for school, I know a couple of Orioles fans and I remember texting one of them simply “Don’t let Adrian get up”. With one out, Ellsbury walked and then Dustin Pedroia worked the count to draw a walk. Next up was Adrian Gonzalez. One pitches later, Adrian hit a two-run double off the Green Monster to win the game and there wasn’t even a question whether it would happen or not.” Whoops