The Boston Red Sox split their four game series with the Baltimore Orioles, which leads them one game ahead of the O’s for first place in the AL East. The first two games of the series the Sox seemed completely in control winning, 7-2 and 6-2. Then in high scoring games the pitching struggled allowing 25 runs in two games, losing 9-13 and 7-12 in the final two games of the series.
Important notes from the series include Jackie Bradley Jr. and his great play including a 29 game hit streak on paternity leave, a healthy baby girl Emerson Claire Bradley. Chris Young his place, only robbed Manny Machado of a home run on a great play, and homer. Mookie Betts did something no other Red Sox lead off hitter has ever done, hitting three home runs in one game. He continued that with two the following night. In the same game he also made one of the best diving catches this year out in shallow right field. Steven Wright went the distance in what was an impressive outing Monday night. Eduardo Rodriquez came back from injury to make his first start in which was a solid outing and picking up the win. Ortiz hit three homers adding to his yearly total up to 16 which is good for third in the AL East and first in RBIs at 51 just ahead of Seattle’s Robinson Cano. Also Xander Bogaerts is looking more and more like the best shortstop in the MLB as he had a over 20 game hit streak, and leads the AL in batting average at .348.
In bad news Joe Kelly was only able to go 2 and a 1/3 in his start forcing the bullpen to go to work. John Farrell was presented with the first chance to use his starter out of the bullpen as he turned to Clay Buchholz who ended up picking up the loss his first time out of the pen.
The Red Sox are now back in Boston against the Toronto Blue Jays for a three game series before hitting the road again. Jackie Bradley Jr. will be back and David Price starts off on the hill facing R. A. Dickey. The Blue Jays are coming off of a sweep of the Yankees outscoring them 15-3. The Jays lineup is good featuring Josh Donaldson, Jose Bautista, and Edwin Encarnacion. They swing hard and hit a lot of shots scoring a lot. The Sox will have their hands full to stay in first place as the Orioles are facing a weaker Yankees team.
After the Toronto series the Red Sox go on the road for 5 games featuring 3 nice off days, a pair of west coast games against the San Francisco Giants, who are a top the NL West, which will be a good test for the Sox to see if they can handle the West and how the team will play deep into the post season. Then off to Minnesota the Sox will battle the Twins in a three game weekend series, which should all be very winnable games for the Sox, as the Twins have only managed to win 17 games at the bottom of the AL Central, and have managed a lower winning percentage than the Red Sox batting average. Then the Red Sox go on a 10 game home stand in Boston back again facing the Orioles, Mariners, and White Sox. All very good playoff teams, which should be a good test on whether or not the Sox can win their home field for the playoffs.