Nathan Eovaldi is the Guy

Boston’s playoff hopes are still alive. Whether the Red Sox will get the first wild card spot, the second, or miss the playoffs entirely nobody knows. With the Yankees, Blue Jays, Mariners and Sox all fighting for two spots and all within a game of each other. It still is anyone’s guess on who takes the remaining two playoff spots in the American League with only two games left for each team. If the Red Sox can hold on to one of those spots, I feel it is clear which pitcher should take the mound to start on Tuesday, October 5. That Pitcher is Nathan Eovaldi.

Why Not Sale?

Eovaldi

As a Red Sox fan, your instinct might be to pick your biggest name if it comes down to one game. Most Red Sox fans will say, ‘Chris Sale should get the ball.’ Well, those people are wrong. Since coming back from surgery this season, Sale has posted a 5-1 record with a 2.90 ERA in 8 starts. He’s also collected 45 strikeouts in 40 inning this season. Those are really good numbers, but it is a small sample size. So, the stats come with a bit of an asterisk when you compare with starters who pitched all year long. However, one could make the argument to go with the hot hand. Sale has been hot since returning to the major leagues. Why not Chris Sale then for a one game playoff? He has a 5.76 career ERA in the playoffs. He has one win in 7 playoff games, including 4 starts. Despite being and “Ace,” Sale hasn’t always been an Ace when the games are at their most important. He’s by no means a bad choice for a big game. Part of why Sale seems to fall off come playoff time is his heavy workload every season. He only threw 40 inning this season. 60 if you count his rehab starts. However, it’s not about Sale not pitching, but more about just having a better choice in the rotation right now.

A Big Game Pitcher

Nathan Eovaldi’s pitching can speak for itself as to why it should be him toeing the rubber on Tuesday night. He’s had a good season for the Sox. He’s won 11 games, struck out 195 batters over 182 innings and put up a 3.75 ERA. Good numbers, and enough to send Eovaldi to his first All-Star game this year. He’s also one of the few starting power pitchers that can consistently touch 99 with his fastball even in the later innings. However, even more than just the pitcher he regularly is, Eovaldi has a way to just turn the dial way up when the games matter more. In the 2018 playoff run Eovaldi has an ERA of 1.61 in 22.1 innings pitched. He collected two wins on two starts and his one loss when he pitched six innings in relief in Game 3 against the Dodgers. Even though Eovaldi got the loss that game, those kinds of gutsy performances are exactly why Nathan needs to take the ball for the wild card game. In that same playoff run he pitched a big Game 3 in the ALCS against the Houston Astros. Going six innings, collecting 4 strikeouts while giving up only two runs for the win. A game that turned the series for the Red Sox and they never looked back. He also pitched Game 3 of the ALDS going seven innings giving up only one run and striking out five against the Yankees in Yankee Stadium. The team you’ll probably be playing if you do make the wild card game.

See You Tuesday Night

Maybe I’m getting a little ahead of myself here, but fate is in the Red Sox hands right now to make the wild card game. The thought of who to save has to be in Alex Cora’s head right now. I’d bet anything that he’s going be looking Nathan Eovaldi’s way for the big game. He has to.

Red Sox Look To Keep Rolling In Anaheim

Following the series in Oakland, the now 54-32 Red Sox beat the Angels in a 5-4 thriller last night. Now, the Red Sox look to keep rolling in Anaheim and to take the series. Boston is currently 9-1 in their last ten games, and look to keep climbing on the AL East. They currently have the best record in baseball, with the San Francisco Giants and the Los Angeles Dodgers right behind them with 53 wins. Last night’s sweet victory further proved that the Red Sox are the team to beat in 2021. As we near the half way point of the season, it seems as though this team can go all the way.

Red Sox look

The Red Sox had quite the battle against Oakland over the weekend. The first game ended with a 3-2 victory that lasted until the 10th inning. Kike Hernandez’s single that drove in Michael Chavis sealed the deal for Boston in that game. The second game also went into extras, as Oakland came on top 7-6 in the 12th inning of play. Sunday’s finale was a battle of the pitching staff. Nick Pivetta, who earned his 7th win of the season, went 7 innings, allowing 2 hits and struck out 10. The lone run came in the 6th inning, when Alex Verdugo scored on a double play. The final for the game was 1-0, and Matt Barnes picked up his 19th save of the season.

The Red Sox Look To Keep Rolling In Anaheim

Last night proved to be a great game for Boston. The 5-4 victory at Angels Stadium was led by Christian Arroyo’s home run in the second, and Martin Perez’s pitching performance. Boston’s offense got off to a strong start, between home runs by Arroyo and Rafael Devers, as well as hits from Danny Santana and Marwin Gonzalez. The Angels also learned why nobody runs on the Red Sox, as Danny Santana got the Red Sox’s 27th outfield assist of the season with a clean throw to Christian Vazquez to nab Jose Rojas at the plate in the 5th inning. Adam Ottavino earned his 7th save of the season, and the Red Sox won 5-4.

Tuesday night’s game will be the battle of the American League All Stars. Nathan Eovaldi, who was elected to his first All-Star game, will have the ball for Boston. The Angels will have Shohei Ohtani on the mound, who was also elected to his first All Star game as a pitcher and a DH. Eovaldi will be looking for win number 10 on the season. His last time out earned him win number 9 against the Royals. Last time out for Ohtani was a short 0.2 inning outing against the Yankees.

Wednesday afternoon’s finale will have Eduardo Rodriguez vs Andrew Heaney. Rodriguez got the no decision last time out against Oakland, where he went 6 innings, giving up a hit and striking out 6 batters. He will be looking for his 7th win of the season. Heaney will be looking to bounce back after a rocky outing against the Yankees, where he got the loss after only 3 innings. He gave up 5 hits and 7 earned runs, while having 4 strikeouts. Heaney is currently 4-6 on the season, with a 5.40 ERA in 14 games.

It’s Sho Time In Anaheim

Angels two way sensation, Shohei Ohtani, is turning heads in Major League Baseball. The 27-year-old pitcher and designated hitter was selected to the American League All-Star Game by the fans as a designated hitter last week. Over the weekend, Major League Baseball announced that Ohtani will also be an All-Star as a pitcher. He will be the first player to be an All-Star as both a pitcher and a batter.

The Japanese native currently has 31 home runs on the season, which leads both the American League and the National League. Right now, he is 22 home runs away from his 100th career home run. As a pitcher, he is 3-1 on the season with a 3.60 ERA in 12 games. Last night against Boston, Ohtani went 1-5 as the designated hitter. Boston batters will be facing him tonight, as he he scheduled to pitch against Nathan Eovaldi.

Ohtani made his Major League debut on March 29th, 2018 against the Oakland A’s. He was a designated hitter in the game, and recorded his first Major League hit. His first start as a pitcher came a few days later, on April 1st, also against the A’s. Ohtani went 6 innings in the game, and earned his first Major League win. Prior to coming to the United States, he played for Japan’s Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters. He was with the Ham Fighters for five seasons before signing with the Angels in December 2017.

The Bronx Bombers Head To Fenway For Three Games

The Red Sox are finally home after going 4-4 on their road trip. The Bronx Bombers head to Fenway for three games vs Boston starting on Friday night. The third place Yankees look to climb to first place in the division, but they first have to get past the first place Red Sox. Following their game vs Tampa Bay, Boston’s currently sitting in first place with a 44-31 record as they head into the home stand. This will be the first time both teams will play at Fenway Park this season. Last time Boston played New York was at the beginning of June at Yankee Stadium.

bronx bombers head

The Red Sox look to continue their success against the Bronx Bombers this weekend, for they are 3-0 against them so far in 2021. They look to continue their success against the Yankees tonight as Martin Perez takes the ball for Boston. Perez and the rest of the Red Sox roster look to have a successful game and series vs the Yankees. This short home stand will be an interesting one for Boston, as they will welcome Kansas City on Monday.

Red Hot Sox vs the Bronx Bombers

Friday night under the lights will feature Martin Perez and Domingo German. Perez will be looking for win number 6 on the season, after getting his fifth win on June 19th vs Kansas City. Perez is currently 5-4 with a 4.32 ERA in 14 games so far in 2021. German will take the mound for the Bronx Bombers after getting the no decision his last time out against the A’s. He’s currently 4-4 with a 4.17 ERA in 13 games.

Game 2 has Nathan Eovaldi going up against Jordan Montgomery. Eovaldi is currently 7-4 with a 3.90 ERA in 15 games so far in 2021. Last time out for the righty was a loss vs the Royals. Eovaldi is looking to bounce back on Saturday night. Montgomery will be attempting to get win number four on the season after getting the no decision in his last start. He’s 3-1 on the season with a 4.03 ERA in 14 games for New York.

Sunday’s afternoon finale will have Eduardo Rodriguez for Boston, and Gerrit Cole for New York. Rodriguez is 5-4 on the season with a 6.07 ERA in 14 games. Last time out resulted in a no decision against the Rays. Through 15 games, Cole is 8-3 with a 2.33 ERA. Last time out was a no decision for Cole against Kansas City.

Dustin Pedroia Night at Fenway Park

The Red Sox will be honoring long time Red Sox player, Dustin Pedroia on Friday night. The fan favorite announced his retirement this past offseason. The beloved second baseman played his entire 14 year career in Boston. He retired with a career average of .299 with 140 homeruns and 725 RBI’s. The Laser Show is 11th on the all time Red Sox list for games played, and second behind Hall of Famer, Bobby Doerr for players who played at 2nd base.

In his first full season with Boston, Pedroia not only won his first World Series Championship, but was named Rookie of the Year. In his second season, he was named the American League MVP, was selected to his first All Star Game and won the Silver Slugger Award. The 37-year-old California native not only won a lot of awards, but won a lot of hearts here in Boston. Thank you, 15.

What’s Next for Boston

Following the series against the Yankees, the Red Sox will be welcoming the Kansas City Royals for a four-game series. This series marks the first time Red Sox Nation will see Andrew Benintendi at Fenway since he was traded this past offseason. It will surely be an emotional night on Monday, as the fans will honor Benny. In five seasons with Boston, Benintendi patrolled the Green Monster, and made spectacular plays in left field. The most memorable play would be in the ALCS in Houston vs the Astros in 2018. That play propelled the Red Sox to get to the World Series. From there, Benny and the 2018 Red Sox won their ninth title in team history.

After the four game home set, the Red Sox will head to Oakland to play Mitch Moreland and the A’s. Following the series, they will be heading to Anaheim to take on Mike Trout and the LA Angels. This will lead Boston to their final home stand vs the Philadelphia Phillies before the All Star break.

Reevaluating the Starting Rotation Two Months into Season

After a disastrous 2020 season where Red Sox starters finished the season with a 5.34 ERA, the rotation has stepped up in a huge way. This season, the rotation has improved its ERA to 4.03, over a full run better. Whereas 16 guys made a start for Boston last season, the team has not had to experiment with different starters and has basically used five guys throughout the season. While the starting rotation is far from perfect, it’s refreshing to have starting pitchers who give the team a chance to win every game. Let’s take a look at how each starter has fared so far this season.

Eduardo Rodriguez

His last few starts have been bad, but having E-Rod back has been big for this team. The rotation was a mess last year without him and Chris Sale. Nobody expected him to be an ace, but Rodriguez is capable of improving on his 4.70 ERA. With an FIP of 3.29, he may be a victim of bad luck and could see improvement later in the season.

Garrett Richards

Expectations weren’t huge for Richards coming into the season and many were ready to cut him after a terrible first start of the season. It wasn’t until his 10-strikeout game against the Mets that Richards was able to prove his value. Once Chris Sale returns don’t be surprised to see Richards take on a role in the struggling bullpen.

Nick Pivetta

Pivetta is the biggest surprise on this team and has a case to be the team’s best pitcher. The Red Sox are 8-1 in games he’s started and he is currently 5-0 on the year. He leads the team in strikeouts per nine innings with 9.4 and has the second best ERA with 3.59.

Martin Perez

Perez has also improved greatly from last season. Despite having an ERA of 4.50 last season, the Red Sox re-signed him to fill out the end of the rotation for 2021. Perez has rewarded Boston with improving his ERA by about one run, currently sitting at 3.55.

Nathan Eovaldi

Ironically, the guy tabbed to be the ace of team is one of two starters with an ERA over 4.00. Despite the high ERA, Eovaldi leads the rotation in strikeouts and has been fairly consistent all year. He has been great keeping the ball in the ballpark, giving up only one home run to this point in the season.

This is far from a great starting rotation, but it is good enough for the team to be competitive.  With an above average offense, the Red Sox just need their starters to keep the game close for 5-6 innings. This the return of Chris Sale and potentially Tanner Houck on the horizon, the rotation will only get better for the second half of the season.

Four Game Set Begins at Yankee Stadium

After a home stand that saw the Red Sox go 2-5, they will head to Yankee Stadium for a four game set against the New York Yankees. What looked to be a promising home stand for Boston turned into a nightmare. At 6-13, and in last place in the AL East, they need to find a groove, and fast. This upcoming series against the first place Yankees will determine how the rest of this season goes. So far, it’s looking like a sinking ship.

For a team that won a World Series in 2018, this is not a good start. Granted, this is a 60four game set game season due to COVID. However, the Red Sox need to have everything clicking from their pitching to their offense. During the home stand, we did see several players step up, from Alex Verdugo to Kevin Pillar. Now, if only our pitching was consistent, this team would be all set.

Red Sox Hope To Do Better at Yankee Stadium With Four Game Set

After being swept by the Tampa Bay Rays, the Red Sox head to Yankee Stadium to face the red hot Yankees. Friday’s starting pitcher for the Red Sox hasn’t been announced yet, but the Yankees will be sending out their ace, Gerrit Cole. At 3-0 with a 3.22 ERA, Cole has been a huge help to the Yankees rotation. He has yet to pitch against the Red Sox this season. Last time out for Cole, he pitched 4.2 innings, and took a no decision against the Rays.

Saturday night’s 7pm matchup to kick off the four game set is between Nathan Eovaldi and James Paxton. Eovaldi, who is 1-1 with a 4.09 ERA, last pitched on August 9th against the Blue Jays. He went six innings, allowing three hits and three runs while striking out ten batters. For Paxton, this will be his second time facing the Red Sox in 2020. Last time he faced Boston, he only went three innings, allowing three runs off of seven hits in a 9-7 Yankees victory. Paxton is currently 0-1 on the season, with a 7.84 ERA.

Sunday Night Baseball heads to the Bronx, which means Sunday’s 7pm game will be on ESPN. The Red Sox have yet to name a starter for this game, however, the Yankees will have JA Happ on the mound. Happ, who is 0-1 with a 10.29 ERA, has only pitched in two games this season. Last time out for Happ was against the Phillies. He went three innings in that game, allowing four runs off of three hits.

Monday’s finale will have Martin Perez pitching for Boston. The Yankees have yet to name a starter for Monday night’s game. Perez, who is 2-2 with a 3.38 ERA, will get his first taste of the Yankees vs Red Sox rivalry. He last pitched against the Rays, taking the loss after pitching 5.2 innings, allowing two runs off of three hits.

The Road Ahead

After a short trip to Yankee Stadium, the Red Sox head back to Fenway Park to take on Bryce Harper and the Philadelphia Phillies for two games. After that very short home stand, they are back on the road to face the Orioles and the Blue Jays. The Red Sox will be finishing August at home against the 2019 World Series Champion Washington Nationals and the Atlanta Braves.

We are a few weeks away from the MLB Trade Deadline. Usually on July 31st, MLB moved it to August 31st for this season. Since the season has started, the Red Sox have struggled at certain points during the season. It’ll be interesting to see who comes and who goes come August 31st. Obviously, pitching is a huge priority for Boston. Right now, with Boston in last place, the question is, are they buyers or sellers?

Struggling Red Sox Head Back To Fenway

After a disastrous road trip that saw them go 3-4, the struggling Red Sox head back to Fenway to start a seven game home stand with the Toronto Blue Jays and the Tampa Bay Rays. The Red Sox did well against the New York Mets at Citi Field, taking both games. However, when the Red Sox landed in the Bronx, things took a turn for the worse. The red hot Yankees swept Boston in their three game series.

After an off day, the struggling Red Sox started a two game series against the Rays atstruggling red sox Tropicana Field. With Nathan Eovaldi on the mound for game one, it was a sure win for Boston. However, the Rays had other plans, winning 5-1. Game two was a different story for Boston. Behind a great start by Martin Perez, and home runs by Alex Verdugo and Michael Chavis, they beat the Rays 5-0. Now, they will carry that momentum to Fenway Park this weekend.

Struggling Red Sox Welcome the Blue Jays

After an off day on Thursday, the Red Sox will take on the Blue Jays at Fenway Park. Ryan Weber will take the ball for Boston against Tanner Roark. Weber is currently 0-2 with a 11.57 ERA in seven innings. His last time out against the Yankees was a 5-1 loss for Boston. Weber only went 3.1 innings, allowing three runs off of four hits. Tanner Roark has only pitched in one game so far, which was a 5-1 victory over the Washington Nationals. Roark went five innings, allowing one run and three hits.

Saturday’s matchup will feature Matt Shoemaker and Zack Godley. Both pitchers are looking for their first win of the 2020 season. Godley, who will be making his third appearance in a Red Sox uniform, is 0-1 with a 6.14 ERA. He last pitched against the Yankees on August 1st, going 3.1 innings in the 5-2 loss. Shoemaker will be making his third appearance of the season as well, last pitching on August 4th against the Braves. He took the loss in the game, going 4.2 innings, allowing six runs off of six hits.

Neither team has announced a starter for Sunday’s 1:35pm game yet. This series is critical for both teams. The Blue Jays are currently 4-6, while the Red Sox are 4-8. For the Red Sox, one player that they need to be careful of is Teocar Hernandez. He is currently batting .297 with four home runs in 37 at bats. Hernandez is leading his team in many categories, including home runs, RBI’s, and stolen bases.

One key part of this series is offense. Right now, the Red Sox’s offense continues to struggle. Home runs by Verdugo and Chavis on Wednesday night showed promise for the last place Red Sox. However, players like JD Martinez, and Xander Bogaerts need to find their 2019 bats and start bringing the offense back to life.

Tampa Bay Rays Come to Boston For Four Games

After the Blue Jays leave Fenway, the struggling Red Sox will welcome the Tampa Bay Rays for a four game series. The Red Sox are currently 1-1 against the Rays, who are 5-7 on the season. Before coming to Boston, the Rays will be hosting the first place Yankees for a four game set starting today. They will then begin their road trip in Boston.

Second baseman Brandon Lowe has been a bright spot for the Rays. He is leading the team in batting average, runs, and hits. Their pitching has been alright, wit Ryan Yarbrough having the lowest ERA on the team, 3.78, followed by Charlie Morton’s 5.52 ERA.

The Red Sox look to have success in this four game set against the Rays, like they did on Wednesday night. Like the series against the Blue Jays, the Red Sox need to do well in this series as well. Right now, there are only 48 games left of the season, and the Red Sox are in a hole. The games against the Jays and Rays will be challenging, but are important.