I hope you slept well, because the Red Sox’ offense sure did.
If you saved yourself some valuable shut-eye instead of watching the Red Sox game, good on you.
The Red Sox lineup picked up right where it left off from the weekend set in Anaheim — that’s to say, it remains in a seemingly never-ending slumber.
The 4-0 loss marked the seventh time in 12 games since the all star break the Red Sox have scored three runs or fewer. The Red Sox have now lost three consecutive games and four of their last five to a pair of teams that are below .500. Things have been better.
James Paxton mowed down the struggling lineup with seven shutdown innings and 10 strikeouts. The Red Sox failed to muster any sort of scoring threat until the seventh when back-to-back singles from Hanley Ramirez and Jackie Bradley Jr. put runners on the corners with nobody out. But the opportunity ended just as soon as it emerged. Chris Young struck out looking for the second at bat in a row (it’s time to let Andrew Benintendi play against lefties a few times). Deven Marrero followed that up with a double play to end the inning and bury the Red Sox’ outside chances at a comeback.
Paxton continued his dominance over the Red Sox — he has allowed just one earned run over 24 career innings against Boston. Things don’t get much easier tomorrow, with Felix Hernandez set to take the mound against Drew Pomeranz.
Eduardo Rodriguez got into trouble in the third inning, allowing a Kyle Seager home run and two more runs to cross before settling down. But with the way the bats were swiniging, the three runs may as well have been 10. Rodriguez showed some encouraging signs in his second start of the disabled list, though clearly showed remnants of rust.
The loss brings the Red Sox to 55-46 and even in the loss column with the who Yankees are a mere two games out of first place in the division.
There are plenty of bad takeaways from this game. For one, the lazy “This Team Is Unlikeable” columns will continue (I dont know, they were pretty likeable when they were winning). The David Price/Eduardo Rodriguez/Dennis Eckersley situation won’t be calming down any time soon. And the lineup is showing no signs of life.
Looking for positives? I guess Brandon Workman looked good in his 1.2 innings — his velocity seems to be back and could be an effective weapon out of the bullpen. Doug Fister pitched a shutout inning out the bullpen. And that’s about all. It was bad.
But tomorrow is Devers Day, and that will be reason enough to tune in. The pressure on Devers is arguable; there is certainly an argument to be made that the pressure is on everyone, Devers just being one component. But this team needs a spark from its offense in the worst way, and for now Devers seems the most likely culprit.
The whole team needs to start hitting. Let’s see if that starts tomorrow.