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So what's wrong with the Red Sox?

Apr 19, 2010, 2:10 PM EDT

As I type this the Red Sox are down 8-2 to the Rays, and are about to lose their fifth straight game and their sixth out of seven. In ATH this morning I wrote that we’d see a bunch of “what’s wrong with the Red Sox” articles today, but I didn’t see any. With this fresh debacle to the Rays, however, I’m sure we’ll see them tomorrow.

Ah, screw it. Let’s write one of our own!  So what is wrong with the Red Sox?

  • Cold bats: As I type this the Rays game is still happening so it may get worse or may get better, but currently they’re 1 for 30-something with runners in scoring position (that one came courtesy of a Bill Hall single a few minutes ago). They’ve scored nine runs in the past five games.  Dustin Pedroia is hitting so far this season. Youkilis is doing OK too. Everyone else is snoozing. At least one of the snoozers — David Ortiz — may never wake up.
  • Health: Two-thirds of the outfield is out, Cameron with kidney stones and Ellsbury with his bruised ribs. This has contributed to the cold bats, of course, as well as some recently shaky defense. When those other “what’s wrong” articles come tomorrow morning you just watch: they’re going to say that the whole run prevention/defense approach is a failure. They won’t acknowledge that it’s hard to play good defense when two of your best defensive players are on the shelf.
  • The Competition: Like I said this morning, part of the reason the Red Sox have looked so bad over the last week is because their competition has been so good. The Rays don’t look like world beaters simply because they’ve been playing the Sox. They’re really, really good in their own right (I picked them second this year). Same goes for the Twins, who could run away with the AL Central if they keep doing what they’ve been doing. Getting beat by good teams doesn’t mean you’re fatally-flawed. It just means you’re not as good as the other guys.

But you know what? We can sit here and talk about what specifically ails the Sox all afternoon, but ultimately it may not matter. As soon as this game ends the Sox will be six games back of the Rays and 5.5 back of the Yankees. That’s an awful big hole for this early in the season in a division like the AL East.

So can what’s wrong with the Red Sox be fixed? I don’t know, but it may already be a pretty irrelevant question.

  1. Fecteau - Apr 20, 2010 at 11:26 AM

    My question about getting Adrian Gonzalez is, where would we put him??? We got Adrian Beltre at third, and he’s been playing like Lowell should be in there instead, we have Victor Martinez, who in 52 at bats has 1 home run, while Jason Varitek, in 13 at bats has 3 homers! First has Youk or V Mart, unless we used a gold glove winning first basemen as a DH… Which I think would include Youk AND A Gonz… It just doesn’t make sense… That being said I want him on the team more than I wanted Teixiera…

  2. NYadulterers - Apr 20, 2010 at 11:28 AM

    @RMW..
    Yes we are adulters and yes your wife does swallow.

  3. joethefirst - Apr 20, 2010 at 11:43 AM

    Son, if you think my bastardization of your name to Harry Butt from the Mr.-Rogers-sounding Harold, then you’re one dumb a*s, freaked out, pot smoking long haired, sweetie pie hippie boy. I’ll be that you look real good in a pair of tight levis, Harry, ButtBoy.
    Heh, heh, got your goat there, Harry Butt.

  4. joethefirst - Apr 20, 2010 at 11:56 AM

    Hey, clown, do you pronounce your moniker as tailex or cotex? Look, you simple-minded fool, read Jeff Katz’s book about the KC A’s and the Wrong Side of the YanPees. The YanPees don’t develop anything but loudmouthed, ignorant, alcoholic fans with fat a*ses and big bellies. The male YanPee are worse than the preceding description of the female YanPee fans.
    Even with the home grown talent, take away the FAs and all of those YanPee teams are sh*t. Take RJ out of the line up and Thurman was nothing more than a Jason Kendall, but with less power than Kendall.
    What the YankPees do is develop maybe, maybe one star every 20 years or so and then surround the star with future HOF FAs and trades from teams dumping superstars they no longer can afford. How many homegrown YanPees are in the HOF?
    Take away Sabathia, Burnett, Texeira, & ARod and what have you? I’ll tell you, you have the KC Royals in YanPee yellow chickenstriped uniforms.
    Now get back in the kitchen and finish putting together those McMac meals, you punk.

  5. CTMT - Apr 20, 2010 at 12:04 PM

    It’s pretty obvious the Sox were hit hardest from the steroid fallout. All teams got caught but Manny and Ortiz obviously were using roids and they both are shells of what they used to be. They both carried the Sox in big, big games. I never saw two guys win so many big season and playoff games in my life. Yankees would have swept the Sox without Ortiz and Manny. Yankees two big roid boys, Giambi and ARod, were useless (until ARod finally did something last year). Red Sox will never win without those two big roiders playing pro ball like you play home run derby against your little brother.

  6. Deese Knutts - Apr 20, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    Me thinks it’s time for David Ortiz to make his “second half correction” like he did last season- just make sure he uses clean needles- he wouldn’t want to contract something nasty.

  7. Deese Knutts - Apr 20, 2010 at 12:33 PM

    How many homegrown Red Sux were on those World Series teams, btw?

  8. Deese Knutts - Apr 20, 2010 at 12:46 PM

    Let’s not forget the rapid decline in Jason Varitek’s numbers after the steroid scandal came to a head.

  9. TBRAYS - Apr 20, 2010 at 12:46 PM

    CT you got it right. let me tell you about what the rays showed everyone this weekend (and what the rest of the league will pick up on):
    Carl Crawford has stolen 30+ consecutive bases against the Red Sox. Most of them completely uncontested. If you’re even 75% as fast as CC you might as well bunt every time against the sox and pick up your free triple.
    Rays are not afraid to run out an infield hit. How many times did Boston try to turn 2 and get beat out at first? More than I can remember. Nobody on Boston was chugging to get to the bag, and it showed with a crazy amount of double plays turned.
    People who don’t get media coverage or $$$ can still light you up. Who is Reid Brignac? Gabe Kapler? Jeff Niemann? Playmakers, as it turns out.
    No team is going to sustain .700 in the AL East, but if the rays were 4-9, I’d be writing worrisome articles too.

  10. MAD from CT - Apr 20, 2010 at 12:54 PM

    You know what’s really funny?
    You put in so much effort to try and embarrass the Yankees, the fans and New York City.
    You remind me of what makes me dislike the Red Sox, it’s not really all of the team, it’s the “fans”.
    All I have to say is the Yankees ownership are willing to REINVEST their profits, back into the teams. Yes, teams! Oh, in case you didn’t know, the ownership puts money back into the minor leagues and overseas.
    Imagine that, REINVESTING into your team.
    So, now you’re on the path to be the American League version of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Glorious past and dismal future!

  11. TopCatNYNY - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:08 PM

    Moses – I’m not sure I would have put their noses in the crap like you did, but you are absolutely right. I think the Yanks were about 5 or 6 games out of first this time last year and they won everything. It is way too early to be this pestimistic but then again, I believed in my Yanks despite the slow start a year ago. It looks as if their fanbase is not defending the Sox’s this year. Perhaps they are seeing their franchise in decline.

  12. Pilothawkeye - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:12 PM

    I am a Yankees fan, and it is WAY TOO EARLY in the season to start writing the Red Sox off. All teams go through hot and cold streaks during the course of a 162 game season, and it is just that the Sox are going through their cold streak early. The starting pitchers for the Sox as a unit are better than the Yankee starting pitchers, and as Yogi would say: “90% of pitching is 50% of baseball” (or something like that). The Sox are too good a team to stay down too long. The Yankees are now on a 9 game road trip (A’s, Angels, O’s), so lets see what happens over the next 10 days. I for one, am not ready to count the Sox out yet (though deep down, I would like to).

  13. Fast Eddy - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:21 PM

    AJ. You are drinking too much of your own product. Big Harold is exactly right on the mark with his comments.I condensed it a bit, but said about the same thing. You had better watch out for the Rays, and let the Sox fall to the basement with the line up they put out on the field. If the Sox do come back to challenge, it will be very surprising to everyone. They need some dramatic trades or new players to come to their aid, or it is all over for them.

  14. NotthebestGM - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:25 PM

    DUH, it’s a joke Mo Ron. By the way, it’s spelled withdrawal, not withdrawl. Before you give me spelling lessons you should look up the correct spelling yourself; and the meaning. Have some pistol pete help you with your quick draw withdrawl. Duh.

  15. Ron - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:30 PM

    Stick a fork in the Banana Republic known as Sux Nation.
    They are done. 6 games behind two talented teams.
    Theo the wonder boy has built a 170 million Disaster…….
    Watch them all turn on Fat Sloppy and Slackey…………
    Jump off the bridge you fools now while you can.
    its going to be a long summer in Beanie Town….
    hahahhahahahahaha
    GO YANKEES NUMBER 28 IS COMING……….BOW BEFORE THE EVIL EMPIRE
    LUCCHINO AND HENRY AS YOU LIKE TO CALL THE PROUD CLASSY YANKEES….

  16. joethefirst - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:47 PM

    Hey, top pussy cat, you’re a dumb sh*t. The profits come from you suckers that over pay to watch mercaneries who don’t give a hoot about the YanPees, the City, or the fans.
    Look, bozo, even the Pirates reinvest a higher percentage of its REVENUES than do the YanPees. Also, many other teams reinvest a much higher percentage of PROFITS than the YanPees. A few of these teams are the LAA, Twins, Brewers, & Mariners.
    So, sucker, keep drinking the kool aid and supporting that great Steinbrenner life style. The Steinbrenners thank you from the bottoms of their multiple luxury homes, corporate jets, and yachts.
    Listen, I’ve got a good deal for you. I’ll sell to you a bridge. It’s a bridge between your empty head and the store that sells brains. Pay my asking price and soon, you’ll be picking out a brain for your shell aka your skull.

  17. joethefirst - Apr 20, 2010 at 1:51 PM

    Hey, MAD, I’d be mad, too, if I were from a c*nt, as are you from a literal reading of your moniker. Read below and educate yourself, you dumb a*s product of some NY public school.
    The profits come from you suckers that over pay to watch mercaneries who don’t give a hoot about the YanPees, the City, or the fans.
    Look, bozo, even the Pirates reinvest a higher percentage of its REVENUES than do the YanPees. Also, many other teams reinvest a much higher percentage of PROFITS than the YanPees. A few of these teams are the LAA, Twins, Brewers, & Mariners.
    So, sucker, keep drinking the kool aid and supporting that great Steinbrenner life style. The Steinbrenners thank you from the bottoms of their multiple luxury homes, corporate jets, and yachts.
    Listen, I’ve got a good deal for you. I’ll sell to you a bridge. It’s a bridge between your empty head and the store that sells brains. Pay my asking price and soon, you’ll be picking out a brain for your shell aka your skull.

  18. Mighty Quinn2 - Apr 20, 2010 at 2:38 PM

    Hmmmm, let’s see . . .
    Per brainchild Theo – “let’s go with defense, pitching and no hitting and we’ll win low scoring, one-run games and clean up at playoff time”. I think the song goes ‘two out of three ain’t bad’. But if it’s just one out of three – and that ‘one’ is no hitting, good night nurse!! What was that boy thinking? Good thing they don’t play 50% of their games in a hitter’s park like Fenway – ooops.
    Oh, and about those ‘facing good pitching’ comments – isn’t that what Boston is touted to have??? Should not their opponents be complaining about facing all that good Sox pitching, lately?

  19. billybill - Apr 20, 2010 at 2:39 PM

    I am a retarted little Irish drunk and I’ve been through withdrawals a whole bunch of times and let me tell ya-it’s not fun!

  20. Big Harold - Apr 20, 2010 at 4:06 PM

    Oh, .. so that wasn’t a typo, .. then you are just a jackass. OK, we get it. Case closed.
    Enjoy third place. The Red Sox should be able to hold off the Jays, theoretically .

  21. bernie - Apr 20, 2010 at 4:14 PM

    joethefirst:
    Let go of your crotch and the picture of your mother and go outside and take a deep breath. Don’t worry, your skim will clear up as soon as you have sex with a real woman. Ask your dad for $200. I’m sure he’ll give it to you because he’ll be so happy you’re not gay.

  22. YankeeJoshua - Apr 20, 2010 at 4:18 PM

    So what exactly do Democrats and Bill Clinton have to do with the Yankees? And by the way, New York doesn’t take the gold for whining about WS rings lost. Boston cried for almost nine decades since Ruth left; now the weight of being in the big leagues with the Yankees is taking its toll on Theo and company. Money doesn’t always talk and bullshit seldom walks (at least if you strike out 150 times when it actually matters)…As for the bridges we should be selling and the kool-aid we should be drinking, 27 rings is 27 rings. Talk to the hand (with 27 rings). Jealousy is a bad color; probably why Boston likes green now.

  23. BaltimoreJoe - Apr 20, 2010 at 4:27 PM

    Hey Ron…While you’re bowing before the Evil Empire make sure to suck it while you’re down there. I can buy fame, fortune, and rings if I had a bottomloss bank account with dumbshits who are willing to bankroll it (aka Yankee fans). Of course, I am an O’s fan so I am bitter about everything. Just food for thought…

  24. BaltimoreJoe - Apr 20, 2010 at 4:30 PM

    Hey Ron…while you’re bowing before the Evil Empire, suck it. – From a bitter O’s fan who wishes the game was not ruled by Sith Lords.

  25. redsoxgal - Apr 20, 2010 at 4:33 PM

    good call!

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