First things first, I’d like to thank the Red Sox for depriving me of precious sleep last night. I stayed up until the bitter end of that nut-cruncher and I will attempt to get reimbursed by John Henry for the six Red Bulls I’m gonna need to get through the day.
At first glance, that horrific 12 inning loss gets pinned right on Edward Mujica. After the Sox fought to hang in, tying the game up twice when hope looked truly lost, he came in around 1:30am eastern time and worked like a man ready for bed, giving up two singles and then a three-run home run to close things out. But if you look at the series as a whole, the offense let us down, big time.
A lot has been said about the 2014 Red Sox outfield being one of the most offensively challenged in quite some time (you’d have to go back to the Bob Zupcic era to find worse). And I’d be lying if I said I didn’t approach every Gomes and JBJ at-bat like a pivotal scene in a horror movie: I know something absolutely wretched is going to happen, but I just can’t look away.
If you take away the contributions of Xander Bogaerts, the Sox’ output at the plate is hugely wretched. And that bottom half of the order killed us in Cleveland. Let’s get one thing straight: The Indians are not a terribly good team. They were a sub-.500 team when we rolled into town and most of these games — if not all of them — were winnable if we’d just gotten a hit when we needed one.
As for the most egregious offenders, Grady Sizemore, who literally pains me every time he steps to the plate and looks like he himself just wants this season to end, was 0-for-8 in this series. Jonny Gomes was 1-for-8. Stephen Drew, who is hell with his glove and a non-entity with his bat, was 0-for-6, and JBJ was 2-for-10.
Last night’s only highlights came courtesy of Brock Holt and, as always, David Ortiz:
Our starters weren’t especially awesome during this series, but Lackey, Peavy and Workman pitched well enough to win, keeping the team in the game for the most part. The bats done let ’em down. Now it’s on to Detroit for a 2013 ALCS rematch. I plan to keep the vodka IV at the ready.