The Joe Kelly Experiment Has To End

The Joe Kelly Experiment has to end, and it has to end now. In Kelly’s first start of 2016 he went 3.3 innings while giving up 7 hits, 7 runs (all earned), issued 3 walks, struck out 4, and gave up a monster grand slam to the 2015 MVP, Josh Donaldson. Not to mention almost beheading Kevin Pillar with a 97 mph fastball that luckily only hit the brim of his batting helmet, which Pillar was then able to bounce back up after being knocked to the ground.

Control issues have been hampering him since arriving in Boston. For a guy who can hit triple digits with his fastball well, let’s just say it doesn’t end well. Joe Kelly ExperimentSo it begs the question, why is he still in the rotation? Why is Farrell so intrigued to keep working on what I believe is a failed project. After spending some time down in Triple A last year, Kelly came back up to Boston and showed signs of major improvement. 5-0 with a 1.69 ERA. But it took a trip down to the minors for him to “fix” whatever issues he was having and now we’re to believe he’s figured it all out? Nope, not buying that one bit.

The fact of the matter is this, the 2016 Red Sox pitching rotation is already looking like the teams biggest downfall. Had it not been for some timely offense and relatively strong bullpen in the most recent game, who knows what the outcome would’ve been. But I do know this—and I hope Farrell finally grows a pair and see’s—Joe Kelly should not be in this rotation whatsoever.

If you want to throw him in the bullpen, great! I’m all for it. The more power arms there the better. But if you’re going to keep him in the rotation expect similar results that we not only saw in the last game, but that we’ve seen since he’s arrived in Boston.

They say in baseball a change of scenery is sometimes all that is needed for a player. Well, I think it’s finally getting to that point for Joe Kelly and I hope it happens sooner rather than later because the Joe Kelly Experiment has finally run its course.

Ding Dong City

Everyone in Red Sox Nation will remember were they where when Manager John Farrell announced that Rookie sensation Travis Shaw aka Mayor of Ding Dong City, would be the Opening Day third baseman for the Boston Red Sox.

“For right now to start the season this is what’s best for our team,” said Farrell.

The Mayor of Ding Dong City

It’s kind of hard to disagree with him, especially after the spring that Shaw had. This spring the Mayor has hit .333, 2 Home Runs, 10 RBI’s and an OPS of .886. Now for me, personally I’m a believer that spring stats don’t mean much in the sense of a preview of what’s to come. But, with that said I do believe that having a good spring CAN play you into the starting lineup, but in this case I think it’s because of something even bigger.

It’s no secret that Farrell is on the “hot seat”, so management HAS to put the best possible product on the field and that’s why we will all be seeing Shaw to open the season. Shaw came into camp hungry and ready to hit the ground running.

Who’s Hungry? Ding Dong City, is.

Sandoval came into camp hungry, hungry for snacks and the food spread and literally couldn’t hit the ground running even with his impressive 17% massive frame. So it’s almost a no-brainer to go with Shaw and see what he can give us in what could be the most important month of April in Farrell’s managerial career.

Do I think The Mayor of Ding Dong City will be the third baseman for the whole season? Hell No. Do I think this is only a temporary fix until Pablo can show some progression and improvement offensively and defensively? Yes. Shaw’s rise to the majors and his popularity in Boston is great to see for the game, but I’m not 100% ready to jump on the Shaw-mobile quite yet, especially when you have Sandoval and his “$17 million dollar salary and his 17% body fat” riding the pine to begin the season.

But for fun, lets say Sandoval doesn’t improve and just can’t cut the mustard and continues to be a bench guy going into June/July…

  • Do the Sox trade him? Doubtful, unless they swallow their pride and eat up a good chunk of money.
  • Do they release him? Very possible, but you’re still going to be on the hook for the remainder of his gut-sized $95 million dollar contract.

Bottom line, Red Sox Nation is ready for the Mayor to hit massive Ding Dong’s all around the league. But if he can’t we have to come to the realization that Pablo and his stash of Ding Dong Cakes will be waiting in the wings.