Monday, August 10, 2009

Yankees Sweep the Red Sox

When Boston's 4 game series with the New York Yankees started, the Red Sox were 2.5 games out of first place in the A.L. East and had a 3 game lead in the Wild Card standings. Now four days (and four embarrassing losses) later Boston is now 6.5 games back in the East, and tied for Wild Card with the Texas Rangers. In the 4 game series the Red Sox were out scored 25-8, which included being shutout both Friday and Saturday night.

The Red Sox came in to this series as a team that was on the rise. They have won two of the last five World Series, and were one game away from returning last season. They were a team that had a balanced offense, a solid defense, and the deepest pitching staff in baseball. And they had just added two more bats at the trade deadline, in 1B Casey Kotchman and All-star C/1B Victor Martinez. They left New York with an inept offense and a pitching staff that couldn't shut down the Yankees bats. The Red Sox's pitching performances were so bad, that Boston was forced to cut ties with future Hall of Famer John Smoltz. Now they are on a 6 game losing streak and are in danger of missing the playoffs completely.

Boston shouldn't be counted out of the playoff hunt yet, but they do have their work cut out for them. They begin a 7 game stretch against the Detroit Tigers and the Texas Rangers. And have only 13 more games against teams with a below .500 record (not counting the Blue Jays who are a playoff caliber team stuck in the best division in baseball). Boston will need to make some roster changes down the stretch if they want to return to the postseason. They may be able to bring up a couple guys from their system, but don't be surprised to see the Red Sox make a couple waiver wire deals to add major league talent. The Red Sox will have 6 more games this season to redeem themselves against the Yankees. But the roster and attitude in Beantown will need to change to take down the surging Bronx Bombers.

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