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Game 130: Red Sox at Twins

Five games under...

Boston Red Sox v Minnesota Twins Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

The Red Sox are once again five games under .500. They’re 16 games back of the Yankees who have struggled and 8 games back in the Wild Card chase. The pieces just aren’t coming together. While the team’s roster has improved and stopped the bleeding, the damage of July was done. But they can play better baseball for a month anyway.

Kutter Crawford bounced back a little bit after his shellacking at the hands (and bats) of the Baltimore Orioles to allow 4 runs in 4.2 innings against the Blue Jays. The good news: one start after giving up three homers he allowed none. He’s been his hard (11 and 10) his last two times out though so he needs a good, efficient performance.

Chris Archer, an old foe from his days on the Tampa Bay Rays has had a tough time since leaving Florida. But his emergence comes at a good time. In 22 starts this year he’s put up a 4.34 ERA against a FIP of, wait for it, 4.35. This isn’t the Archer of 2015-2017. The strikeouts are down and the walks are up. After living with a strikeout-to-walk ratio over 3.4 in his prime it’s just 1.81 in 2022. He’s never been one to give up a lot of home runs so if the Sox want to get at him it’ll be hits and walks. Which, given the team’s struggles with the long ball, is fitting.

Alex Cora will have his work cut out for him. Kutter Crawford can go from hot to cold over a few batters. Archer could be vulnerable at a key moment when a manager decision is impactful. As many 2-out-of-3 series as possible is what the Sox need. Not even for slip playoff hopes but just to show that with their full compliment of bats they are watchable.

Game 130: Red Sox at Twins

Lineup spot Red Sox Twins
Lineup spot Red Sox Twins
1 Tommy Pham, LF Luis Arraez, 1B
2 Alex Verdugo, RF Carlos Correa, SS
3 Xander Bogaerts, SS Max Kepler, RF
4 Rafael Devers, 3B Jose Miranda, DH
5 J.D. Martinez, DH Nick Gordon, 2B
6 Trevor Story, 2B Gio Urshela, 3B
7 Franchy Cordero, 1B Jake Cave, LF
8 Kiké Hernádez, CF Gilberto Celestino, CF
9 Reese McGuire, C Sandy León, C
SP Kutter Crawford, RHP Chris Archer, RHP