Buchholz not sharp:
Clay Buchholz got rocked in his second straight outing of 2011. He lasted just 3 2/3 innings while allowing five runs (four earned) on eight hits, while walking three, and striking out two. He is now 0-2 with a 7.20 ERA. He featured his devastating changeup which I think he will be relying on more as the season progresses. The most disturbing thing about the rotation, is with the exception of Jon Lester's gem against Cleveland, they have failed to record a quality start. The Red Sox offense is going to pick up steam, but the starting pitching has to be better if they want to win 90+ games.
What’s wrong with Youk?
Kevin Youkilis has been one of the many Red Sox hitters who have gotten off to a slow start in 2011. Through eight games he is batting .125 and has managed just two extra-base hits. Tomorrow he has a chance to breakout with a favorable matchup on the mound; CC Sabathia. Sabathia has been known to be tough on lefties as well as righties, however Youk is a career .409 hitter off him. If his struggles continue into the series against Tampa Bay, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Tito sit him for a game in favor of Jed Lowrie.
Pedroia continues hot streak:
After starting off five for twenty-two through the first six games of the season, Dustin Pedroia has been on a tear, collecting six hits in his last nine at-bats. Today Pedie reached base safely four times, hitting three doubles and driving in two runs. As good a hitter Pedroia is, he can’t carry this Sox offense the entire season. He is just one for twenty-two in his career against CC Sabathia, so some other players will need to step up tomorrow night if the Sox want to win.
Scutaro out, Lowrie in:
One of the storylines this Spring was Jed Lowrie competing with Marco Scutaro for the starting shortstop position. Scutaro is batting just .143 in the early goings, and that prompted Francona to start Lowrie today. Lowrie went three for four with an error in the loss. If Scutaro continues to struggle offensively, Lowrie might see an increased role at short, especially against right-handed pitchers. It’s still too early to say with confidence that Tito will eventually resort to a full platoon between the two, but it is definitely a possibility. In my mind, it wouldn’t be such a bad idea; I think Lowrie has proven he is capable of being an everyday player.