The season is 85 games old and Boston’s socks are soaked red with the blood of the rest of the American League. The only team with 50+ wins and the only team with a winning percentage above .600 are two titles that this year’s team can claim as of today.
However this doesn’t mean things are all rosy in Beantown. In fact, two of my biggest concerns for the second half are with two of the biggest hitters in the Sox lineup. David Ortiz, who carried most of the offense, has slipped a bit in his power production since the beginning of the season. He only has two home runs in his last 17 games, compared to three home runs in the 4 games before that 17 game stretch.
Another struggling star is Mike Napoli. We all remember getting Napoli to sign a discounted deal because of a mysterious hip ailment, however he showed no ill effects as he demolished April pitching like it was a breakfast buffet table. Now he has turned into a glorified singles hitter, having seen his slugging percentage drop from .500 on June 1st to .434 on June 30th, racking up only 1 home run and 1 double during that span. It would be a tough blow to the Red Sox if this is due to his hip flaring up again.
In other news, I just wrote a pessimistic article about the Red Sox and didn’t mention the word “bullpen” once! That’s a new record.