There really is no explanation for the 2013 Red Sox. The only thing one can say about them is a word we heard all spring: Resilient. That word resonated throughout the Spring Training complex in Ft. Myers, Fla., mostly from manager John Farrell. These past two games have been the epitome of the definition.
In the series opener, the Red Sox blew an 8-2 lead, only to beat New York in 9-8 in extra innings. A night later, the Sox found themselves down 8-3. Boston exploded with five runs in the seventh and four in the eighth to win 12-8 over the Bronx Bombers.
Boston (86-57) is 5-1 this September and things just feel different than they did the past two seasons, when the Sox went a combined 14-39. Instead of teams closing the gap, the Sox are widening it at a time when there’s not much time for ground to be made up. The Red Sox lead the AL East by 7.5 games over the Rays (77-63), 9.5 over Baltimore (75-65) and their lead over the Yankees (75-66) has reached double-digits.
Today, the Red Sox have a chance to win the four-game series with their third win, and the season series over the Yanks with their 10th win (Boston leads 9-5). It would also put the Red Sox 30 games over .500 for the first time since Sept. 3, 2011 (84-54). John Lackey leads the charge today, as the right-hander starts against New York. Lackey is 8-12 with a 3.22 ERA, but continues to be one of the best pitchers on the staff, despite just eight wins.
Here is the Red Sox lineup today (first pitch – 1:05 pm EDT):
1. Victorino, RF
2. Gomes, LF
3. Pedroia, 2B
4. Ortiz, DH
5. Napoli, 1B
6. Middlebrooks, 3B
7. Bradley, Jr. CF
8. Lavarnway, C
9. Bogaerts, C
David Huff starts for the Yankees, making his first start of the 2013 season (seventh appearance). Huff is 2-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 16.0 innings out of the pen.
With three home runs Friday, the Red Sox have now blasted 13 homers in their last three games. One player, Will Middlebrooks, has a home run in each game.
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