Sox stay hot but is there enough time?

Jim Monaghan
Content Coordinator

It's a short sample size, but over the last ten games, the Red Sox at 7-3 are the hottest team in the American League.

That's with David Price on the injured list, Chris Sale done for the year, and you're-not-quite-sure-what-you're-going-to-get performances from Rick Porcello and Nathan Eovaldi.

Photo courtesy of USA Today
Somehow, Eduardo Rodriguez has emerged as the ace of the staff, the bullpen has started to sort things out, and the offense continues to mash.

Saturday night it was six innings of two-run ball from the bullpen and a tie-breaking home run by Brock Holt (pictured) leading off the top of the ninth as Boston beat the Padres 5-4 in San Diego.

With five weeks remaining, it has basically come down to this - can the Red Sox make up the seven games in the loss column that they trail Oakland and Cleveland by?

The Rays are still in the mix (Boston trails Tampa Bay by six in the loss column as of Sunday morning), but looking strictly at the loss column, it's the Athletics and Indians who the Red Sox are focused on.

Cleveland probably has the toughest schedule left - three against the Rays, six with the Twins, three with the Phillies and three with Washington. The other games are against teams with a losing record.

Oakland still has three with the Yankees in New York next weekend and a four-game series in Houston in mid-September but the rest of their season is against sub-.500 teams.

The Rays will face Houston (three games) and Cleveland (three games) over the next week but then won't see a legitimate foe again until they face the Dodgers in Los Angeles for two games in late September before hosting the Red Sox for four games and the Yankees for two at the end of the month.

The Red Sox have a critical homestand the first week of September when they will face the Twins and Yankees for a combined seven games.

Seven games to make up with five weeks to go. It doesn't look promising.

Click here to find more by Jim Monaghan on Red Sox Life. Follow him on twitter - @Monaghan21.