I have dutifully done my “Dodged Bullet – Teeth Grinder” tally each of the last few years for the Red Sox. I have tried to figure out if the Red Sox have blown more games or stolen more.
I have always been interested in how they fare in terms of how they handled games that could have gone either way.
But I realized that this only makes sense to track these close games if the Red Sox are contenders.
The Red Sox are not contenders
They stink with a capital stink.
And this isn’t “A Bad Start.”
The Angels and Marlins have a bad start. But they have the talent.
The Red Sox don’t have the talent. Their rotation is suspect. Their bullpen is… well…
Andrew Bailey is hurt. Mark Melancon was sent to Pawtucket with 2 losses and a 49.50 ERA.
Alfredo Aceves, the nominal closer, has 2 blown saves and a 24.00 ERA.
Franklin Morales, Vincente Padilla, Justin Thomas… as my friend Nick Stevens said, “are magicians. They can make any lead disappear.”
So I will update the tally tonight, but after that, I am making the call. This isn’t a contender and until further notice, I won’t treat them as such.
April 9 – 4-2 win in Toronto. (A day after blowing leads in the 9th and 11th, the Sox win their first game of the year with a 3 run 9th inning rally capped off by Ryan Sweeney’s 2 out go ahead RBI single)
April 14 – 13-5 win against Tampa Bay. (Buchholz fell behind 4-0 in the first but the Sox slugged 5 homers to come from behind.)
April 15 – 6-4 win against Tampa Bay. (David Ortiz doubled twice including a tie breaker in the 6th.)
TEETH GRINDER GAMES -6
April 5 – 3-2 loss in Detroit. (The Red Sox rally to tie the season opener with 2 outs in the 9th only to lose on a bases loaded walk off single by Austin Jackson.)
April 8 – 13-12 loss in Detroit. (The Red Sox bullpen surrender a 3 run game tying homer in the 9th to Cabrera and Avila smacked a 2 run, 2 out walk off come from behind homer to win it in as brutal a loss as you will ever see.
April 11 – 3-1 loss in Toronto. (Lester throws a complete game but Ricky Romero shut down Boston’s bats and Rajai Davis manufactured a critical run.)
April 16 – 1-0 loss against Tampa Bay. (Daniel Bard walks in the only run of the game with 2 outs in the 7th.)
April 18 – 6-3 loss against Texas. (A fine Beckett performance was wasted by Napoli’s homer)
April 21 – 15-9 loss to the Yankees. (The Red Sox took a 9-1 lead into the 7th. The bullpen put on a display of suck that will be remembered for generations.)
And the tally is on hold.
The Red Sox stink.
They are the Royals right now. They are an also ran, non contender.
Sometimes it isn’t too early to declare that.