A quick summary of the Boston Red Sox through their first six games:
Needless to say, there’s cause for concern in Red Sox Nation. Then again, there’s one thing that can ease that concern rather quickly, if you’re willing to show a little patience (and yes, I know I’m asking for blood from a stone): The fact that we’re only through six games.
Just let these guys play already! The sky isn’t falling for Angels fans despite big hopes and a 2-4 start. The Miami Marlins have bigger fish to fry (no pun intended) with Ozzie Guillen’s latest foot-in-mouth moment to worry about a 2-5 first week. And after pulling off a similar collapse last year, is it the end of the world for the Atlanta Braves and their 2-4 record? No.
At least the Red Sox have a win under their belt, unlike this time last year. Despite the numbers above, they’ve gotten some good pitching performances from Jon Lester (holding two potent offenses in check despite two losses) and Felix Doubront. Scott Atchison and Vicente Padilla have proved themselves to be valuable out of the bullpen.
The Red Sox offense has shown signs of life as well. They are tied for the American League lead in doubles with 14, and can hang in there when they really need to – think Sunday’s game at Detroit, bumping up their leads when the Tigers clawed back; and Monday’s game against the Blue Jays, scrapping together three runs in the ninth to get their first win of the season (and holy smokes, Alfredo Aceves didn’t blow it that time!)
At this point it’s a matter of damage control within games. Can the starting pitching hold an offense down for six or seven innings on a regular basis? And to that effect, can the offense make contact with the ball over that same period of time? Both halves of the club need to pull their fair share of the weight before the Red Sox can get a win streak going.
The baseball season is a marathon, not a sprint. All will not be determined in one week of play. Even last year’s collapse could have been averted at any point in time of the season with one more win. And besides, Boston fans have a few distractions on their plate anyways – the Bruins are in the playoffs, and the Celtics are on a hot streak. So maybe not giving the Red Sox their undivided attention might help with the whole pressure thing.