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Know Your Enemy: Boston Red Sox

The Pink Sox Classic returns

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2021 season: 92-70, 2nd in AL East

2021 marked the return of Alex Cora. He was rehired after being fired for his role in the Astros 2017 shenanigans. Well, “fired” because we all know Ron Roenicke was just keeping his seat warm (and putting up a god-awful 2020 season). 2021 was also marked by 10 players hitting the COVID-19 IL in August. They also worked their way through the postseason, only to lose to the Astros in the AL Championship.

Xander Bogaerts continued to hit balls all over the place, leading the Red Sox offense with a .295 average by the end of the season, ultimately slashing .295/.370/.493. Rafael Devers made up the rest of their offensive prowess with 113 RBIs, 38 home runs, and 101 runs scored. Eduardo Rodriguez picked up the most wins for the pitching staff (13) while Nathan Eovaldi had the best ERA (3.75), WHIP (1.19), and strikeouts (195). Baserunning issues plagued the Red Sox and frequently were picked off, running into outs, or getting thrown out. The infield was a tough spot for them too, throwing at everyone around first but the first baseman.

The inconsistency was a key downfall to the Red Sox, though. When they were hot, they were hot. When they weren’t, they relinquished their first place spot atop the AL East.

So far this season

The Red Sox are 10-16 (4th in the Easy) and have lost five consecutive series so they’re going to be aggressive, maybe. The team is slashing .229/.279/.347 which isn’t exactly red hot. Bogaerts continues to lead the team on average (.354) and OBP (.404). Alex Verdugo has two doubles, three home runs, and 13 RBIs while J.D. Martinez is 11-for-31 with four doubles and two home runs in the last 10 games. They could be a lot worse....but they could also be a whole lot better. In their last 10 games, the Red Sox are 3-7 with a .236 batting average and 4.09 ERA, outscored by 12 runs.

Pitching-wise they’re not faring much better. They’re 10th in the AL for ERA (3.81) but not for lack of control as they’re ranked second in strikeouts (235). Just don’t pay attention to their walks (90), home runs (30), and runs (108).

Pitching Matchups: We have them

Friday will be Vince Velasquez vs. Eovaldi. Velasquez has been trending slightly upwards this season, despite a 1-2 record and 4.58 ERA over 17.2 innings. Eovaldi is 1-0 this season with 2.51 ERA over 28.2 innings. Hopefully, the good version of Velasquez shows up.

Saturday is Dylan Cease vs. Nick Pivetta. Pivetta is 0-2 this season at home with a 13.50 home ERA. In his five starts, he’s lasted 20.2 innings while allowing 25 hits, 18 earned runs, and four home runs. You’d think he would be better at home but you would be wrong.

Sunday is Dallas Keuchel vs. Michael Wacha. Wacha has a 3-0 record and a 1.38 ERA this season. His home record is 2-0 and posting a 0.00 ERA at home. Wacha has gone 26 innings this season while walking 11, striking out 19, and allowing 13 hits.

Bonus DraftKings Content

Take a look at this weekend’s odds via DraftKings!

Why do we hate them: Bird App Edition