|(Photo by: Matt Stone)|
It's official folks, the Red Sox are in trouble.
They are four games back in the AL East.
They have lost six straight games.
The numbers are getting scary.
They are 10-16 at home, 10-20 when facing a right-handed starting pitcher, and 5-20 when their opponent scores first. They have lost three consecutive series and if Toronto beats them Thursday afternoon, it will be the third time the Red Sox are swept at home and it is only two months into the season.
Then comes the news that the Red Sox are going to fix this with $10 million dollars thrown at Stephen Drew, who will play shortstop for the remainder of the 2014 season.
All hail the savior?
This is not the fix to all the Red Sox problems, but it is a start to plug at least one of the defensive holes where Xander Bogaerts has made six errors to date at the shortstop position.
What it does not fix is the lack of offensive production at third base between Will Middlebrooks and Brock Holt. What it does not fix are the four errors this platoon has given up at the hot corner so far this season.
The starting pitching, outside of Jon Lester has been dismal and the bullpen has been giving up runs like they are free donuts from the Duncan trucks at Copley Square.
Clay Buchholz now carries a 6.42 ERA after nine starts, four of which have seen him fail to finish the fifth inning, and six of which have ended in losses for Boston, despite his and his manager's insistence that he’s physically feeling fine.
Felix Doubront is another disappointment so far, sporting a 5.12 ERA and headed out on the DL. Hopefully he can figure it out as he has been shaky to say the least for the Red Sox as a starter.
Jake Peavy is also not ripping it up with a 4.33 ERA and John Lackey just a hair better at 4.01 ERA.
Our world class closer is getting bored out there in the bullpen. Yesterday Koji Uehara pitched a perfect ninth, though it marked the second consecutive appearance in which he was brought into a losing game just to get some work. He’s worked just three times, facing 11 batters, since notching his eighth save on May 7.
What we need to keep in mind is that while we should and could now have a solution for shortstop defence and a mediocre bat in the lineup with Stephen Drew, he will not fix much at all.
We discussed the options for the left side of the infield just last week and pointed out that Brock Holt might be a good option to fix the third base production problem just a few days ago. Unfortunately with the move to acquire Drew, he will be sent back down to Triple-A.
Xander Bogaerts will now have to switch focus from shortstop defense to playing third base.
Also something to think about is the stellar defense in center field by Jackie Bradely Jr., but a lack of offense that has seen him sitting every other game with a .206 average.
Execution has been a problem throughout the lineup, with the Red Sox being the third worst team at leaving runners on base with an average of 7.64 per game so far this season. The last three games they left an average of nine on base and last night they left 11 men on base.
So all hail the returning hero Stephen Drew.
It was a good deal that the Red Sox did not lose him and a compensation draft pick while getting him at a premium price.
That is about all you can say right now as he heads to Pawtucket to get in his 25 at-bats rehab swings in before making his expected appearance in the lineup at shortstop this weekend.
Fingers crossed that this is the chemistry changing acquisition that turns around the skidding Red Sox.
Post a comment or via twitter @ericschabell with your thoughts.
More by Eric D. Schabell