The Boston Red Sox may be tied for first in the American League East (for now. In ten minutes, they won’t be). They may have scored the fifth most runs in baseball. They may have the best bullpen in baseball. But the Boston Red Sox have a lot of problems.
Actually, let me correct that. They have one BIG problem:
The team cannot score. It’s the worst offense under GM Theo Epstein’s tenure with Boston and it just keeps getting worse. So far in July, the team is batting .226. Only San Diego and Pittsburgh have been worse in that month. In June, the team batted .260. For a team consistently around the .280 mark around the last few season, .260 is not very good. Let’s dig deeper into individual stats:
Dustin Pedroia is hitting .367 in July. He’s the only one
Youkilis is at .254. Ellsbury .234. Papi .218. Varitek .216. Jason Bay is hitting .184. Nick Green is at .150. J.D. Drew is at .137. That’s 8 of the 9 offensive players with the other position being platooned between Rocco Baldelli and Mark Kotsay, who are hitting .214 and .211 respectively. Without Pedroia, the team is hitting .207 in July. Continue reading “Red Sox Offensive Struggles”
With just a couple days left for fans to vote for the starters of the 2009 MLB All Star Game, it’s time to look at which players deserve that honor. First up, the American League:
Catcher: Joe Mauer
This one is easy. Mauer leads all American League catchers in Batting Average, Home Runs, RBI, Runs, Hits, On-Base-Percentage, and Slugging Percentage. He’s made just one error on the season and has thrown out 9 of 26 batters who have tried to steal against him. The one negative for Mauer is that he missed the first month of the season with an injury. That just makes Mauer’s stats all that more remarkable as he leads all AL catchers in all those categories despite many fewer at-bats.
First Base: Justin Morneau
One of the tougher choices in the AL, First Base has many deserving players. Kevin Youkilis leads the league in OBP, 38 points higher than Russell Branyan who is in second place, but has just 12 home runs and 42 RBI on the year. Carlos Pena leads with 23 home runs, but sports just a .238 avergae. Mark Teixeira has 20 homers and 60 RBI, but just a .276 average. Only Justin Morneau is complete in all the stats with 18 home runs, 63 RBI (most amongst first basemen), and a .309 Batting Average. His .389 OBP is 5th between AL first baseman and his .960 OPS is 4th. He has made just one error this season and has the second highest Zone Rating amongst AL first basemen. Continue reading “2009 AL All Star Starters”
The Red Sox once again are ahead of the Yankees by nine games after surviving a surge by the Bronx Bombers. Yet, the Sox batters’ recent success has been from the role players and not from either Manny Ramirez or David Ortiz. On the contrary, Ramirez and Ortiz have been hurting the offense. They have grounded into a ton of rally killing double plays and do not take pitches like the rest of the team. For instance, in the first inning of the Sox game today, both Julio Lugo and Dustin Pedroia put on very good at bats. They used up a combined 12 pitches form Tampa Bay Devil Rays’ starter Scott Kazmir and ended up both getting singles. Ortiz stepped up to the plate and on the first pitch grounded into a double play. Ramirez followed up with a weak ground out to the pitcher, also on the first pitch. Now the seventh inning is over, and the Sox still have no runs. Ramirez and Ortiz blew the Sox best chance to score. They killed a rally and let Kazmir out of a jam. Continue reading “Red Sox Need Lineup Changes”