At the rate the Sox are going, Elf, Buchholz and Vic are gonna get back just in time to shut off the lights and lock the doors. Since that 17-9 run in June, the patchwork teams we’ve been fielding in July are in free fall, losing 7 of their last 9 and dropping 5 and a half games out after knocking at first place’s door.

I know relief will soon be coming in the form of healthy players, new blood via trade or androids stealthily constructed to look and feel like humans but invulnerable to muscle cramps, cracked ribs, and the subtle charm of Rachel Maddow. I just dont want to be forty-six games out when the cavalry shows up.

I say tonight would be an excellent time for John Lackey to step up huge, shut down the Rangers offense, and show the world that while Cliff Lee made for a pretty good signing, Big John ain’t exactly Peter Hoy.

Chances that’s actually gonna happen? Probably as likely as Heidi Watney and Amalie Benjamin showing up at my place and asking me to judge a combination tan line/popsicle eating contest.

But I can dream, people. And I dream big.