The Red Sox certainly are not this bad. They can not possibly be this horrendous of a team. This is a team, if you reach back into back of your mental cavities, that won a World Series a little more than seven months ago. This is a group of players that has the talent to make it back to the playoffs.
Right now, this team certainly does not resemble a shard of the group that won it all last year. In midst of an eight game losing streak, the Red Sox are struggling their way through a tough stretch of games where nothing has gone their way. Their pitching has been terrible and their hitting has not done anything to help the putrid performances from the mound.
The Red Sox currently sit tied last for place in the American League East, six games behind the first place Toronto Blue Jays. As the days roll by and the team gets closer to June, a question is begging to be asked. Is this a bridge year for the Red Sox?
Ultimately, this question can only be answered by general manager Ben Cherington. The team's recent signing of Stephen Drew suggests that the team is certainly attempting to gain a playoff berth. The move to sign Drew moves Xander Bogaerts off of shortstop, a place where the Red Sox have publicly stated is the position they want the 21-year-old to play in future years. Moving Bogaerts off of shortstop hampers his defensive development at the position, something that is not in the best interest of the team long-term if what the team say publicly about Bogaerts' future defensive position aligns with the team's inner thinking.
What the team decides to do moving forward will ultimately determine whether 2014 is a bridge year for the Red Sox. Injuries and continued poor performance from key players, however, may make the decision easier for Ben Cherington. While it is too early to say that a players' current performance is completely indicative of their performance for the rest of the season, six weeks is not a large enough to make moves based on that performance.
The main sources of poor performance currently stem from the outfield and the pitching rotation. Grady Sizemore has not resembled even 50 percent of the player he once was in Cleveland. Clay Buchholz has been one of the worst starting pitchers in all of baseball. Jackie Bradley, Jonny Gomes and Shane Victorino's struggles cannot go unnoticed. Felix Doubront's left shoulder strain may have been a good thing for the rotation.
Cherington needs to make moves to address these concerns, whether it is call up Daniel Nava from Pawtucket, trade for a starting pitcher or outfielder or commit to to young players like Christian Vasquez, Allen Webster, Brandon Workman, among many others, to allow them to make the adjustment to the majors sooner rather than later.
The time to make a decision is coming soon for Cherington and the front office. As the team continues to struggle, the urgency to make a decision on sed dilemma grows. While the AL East certainly has not been the powerhouse of a division so far this season that it has been in the past, any continued struggles by the Red Sox will prevent the team from making any sort of run at a playoff spot, regardless of the division's weakness.
Decision day for Cherington lurks closer, day by day, loss by loss.