Boston Red Sox
Playoff Odds on 3/21: 90.6%
Playoff Odds on 5/9: 62.7%
What a difference a year makes, right? The only time Boston was under .500 last year happened on Opening Day when they lost to the Tampa Bay Rays. They went on to win 17 of their next 18 games, and the rest was history. But this year? The Red Sox have been fighting for most of the last six weeks to get themselves back up to .500, which was just accomplish on Wednesday.
Both sides of the ball have struggled to start 2019, but it’s the pitching staff that’s really been their downfall thus far. David Price (3.75) and Hector Velazquez (4.03) are the only two of three hurlers with at least four starts who own an ERA south of 5.00. And although things have gotten a little better lately, Chris Sale has been the poster child for these struggles, as he owns a 1-5 record with a 4.50 ERA in 44 innings (he finally looked like himself on Wednesday after allowing just one run with 14 strikeouts over eight innings).
It’ll be interesting to see how if the Red Sox can kick it into high gear as they currently look up at the New York Yankees — who have performed well despite an incredible number of injuries — and the Rays. Their chances of reaching the postseason are still good because of how the rest of the American League has played out, but it’s going to be a lot harder for them than many of us initially thought.