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Red Sox Mid-Season Report Card

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CF | Johnny Damon
.343/.386/.473 / 4 HR / 42 RBI

Damon has been consistent throughout the first half of the season as the Red Sox leadoff man. Damon leads the league in hits and is right up there in batting average. Not only that, but he's in the midst of a 25-game hitting streak which is the best in the majors this season. Damon is solid on the base-paths, also, as he has stolen 9 bags and has only been caught once.

Grade: A

DH | David Ortiz
.314/.396/.585 / 21 HR / 75 RBI

My favorite characteristic of Ortiz is that he's clutch - all the time. He's won a few games this season, and he just continues to pound the ball all season long. The scary thing, though, is that Ortiz is getting better over the years. He obviously busted out when he signed with the Red Sox, but his numbers are getting better year after year. Remember how people say Ortiz can't hit lefties? That's in the past now. Ortiz is hitting .330 against left-handed pitchers this season, including a walk-off home run of Orioles' closer BJ Ryan earlier in the season. I am with the rest of the nation when I say: I Heart Big Papi.

Grade: A

RP | Mike Timlin
3-1 / 1.69 ERA / 42.2 IP

The only real stud of the Boston bullpen has been Timlin who seems to be having an out-of-body experience this season. We all know he's a good pitcher, but I don't think anyone expected him to have such a great ERA going into the All-Star break at the age he is. Most 39 year old relievers don't have their career year at that same ripe age of 39. Timlin has never finished a season with an ERA under 2, but this may be his first season ever. His best season was in 95 with Toronto when he finished with a 2.14 ERA, but he's already surpassed the number of innings pitched he had then (42) this year.

Grade: A

SP | Matt Clement
10-2 / 3.85 ERA / 117.0 IP

Clement is having a fantastic season in his first year as a Red Sox, and he's being rewarded by going to the All-Star game after Roy Halladay's recent injury. Clement already has more wins under his belt in July than he did all of last season for the Cubs. He is also supporting one of his lowest ERA in his career, with only two seasons topping his 2005 campaign.

Grade: A-

C | Jason Varitek
.301/.367/.525 / 13 HR / 36 RBI

We call him "Captain" for a reason. He's demonstrating why he is the captain this season with his impressive power and his average staying above .300 for most of the season so far. Varitek is also killing left-handed pitchers beyond belief with a .397 batting average in 63 at-bats. The same size is small, true, but 6 of his 13 home runs came against left-handers.

Grade: A-

LF | Manny Ramirez
.275/.361/.549 / 22 HR / 80 RBI

Ramirez has been his normal self this season except for his batting average, which is .316 lifetime for him. If his batting average were to be over .300, he would probably get an A for a grade. He is walking a lot this season, too, which helps his on-base percentage which is pretty solid this season. Ramirez's big struggle this season is against left-handed pitchers which, ironically, he usually dominates. He is only hitting .165 against lefties this season, which is a big reason why his batting average is so low. Against righties? .318 on the season.

Grade: A-

Here's how the rest of the team stacks up, according to position. Only players with 50 or more at-bats are considered offensively, and pitchers with 15.0 or more innings pitched:

Catcher:
Doug Mirabelli - C
Hitting the occasional home run, but is more important catching Wakefield

First Base:
Kevin Millar - C-
No power, no batting average, no glove. Clubhouse presence has been big.

John Olerud - B-
Has hit well for his at-bats with a great glove. Has been clutch, too.

Second Base:
Mark Bellhorn - D+
Pulling a Millar. He's lost his power, but his glove has been alright this season.

Ramon Vazquez - D
Gone. Adios. Have fun in Cleveland. I wish you the best, but you did nothing for us.

Shortstop:
Edgar Renteria - C+
A disappointing first half of the season, but he's too good to stay like this all season.

Third Base:
Bill Mueller - B
Has been good defensively, and not many in the league are better with runners in scoring position.

Kevin Youkilis - B-
Always seems to get a clutch hit, but doesn't get much playing time. Great OBP.

Outfield:
Trot Nixon - B+
Pretty good average and could hit 20 HR this season with more playing time.

Jay Payton - C
Hit a few home runs, but was a complainer and brought down the clubhouse. He'll be gone very soon.

Starting Pitchers:
Tim Wakefield - B-
His ERA would be much better if Mirabelli never got hurt.

Bronson Arroyo - B
Except for a few tough games, Arroyo has been solid and giving the Sox a lot of innings.

David Wells - C
Since his injury he's been a better pitcher.

Wade Miller - C-
Hasn't pitched to his potential ... yet.

Curt Schilling - F
Struggled and injured for the first half. Second half will be a different story.

Relief Pitchers:
John Halama - D-
We had too high of expectations for him coming into the season.

Keith Foulke - F
He should have had surgery, because his season has been horrible.

Alan Embree - F
Next on Theo's chopping block? I hope so with an ERA over 7.

Matt Mantei - D
Was good for the start of the season, then an injury came along and through all his stats out of whack.

Jeremi Gonzalez - D
He's been OK, but we can't rely on the guy everyday like Timlin.

Mike Myers - B
He usual self: low ERA, great against lefties (.167 BA), horrible against righties (.381 BA)