The Glass Half Full

flu

Six games into the season, we’re in third place, a game and a half in back of Baltimore and half a game behind Tampa. Two teams that were, notably, picked by most to finish in the bottom half of the division.

The team picked by most to win the American League East, your Boston Red Sox, is hovering at .500, thanks to two comeback wins. In the six games they’ve played, they’ve scored 22 runs. Of the 57 innings they’ve been on the field, they’ve scored runs in nine of them. Only five clubs have scored fewer runs than the Red Sox, and only five have hit for less power.

In case you’re fuzzy on the whole good/bad thing, that’s bad. But it’s too early to despair. Remember that things have not exactly gone according to plan so far this season. Consider the following:

  • Last year’s $217M free agent pitcher (Price) has yet to make a start and just threw off a mound today for the first time due to elbow problems.
  • Last year’s major addition to the bullpen via trade (Smith) threw three games for the Red Sox in 2016, had Tommy John surgery and isn’t projected to be back until June.
  • This year’s major addition to the bullpen via trade (Thornburg) injured his shoulder in spring training and is only just now beginning to throw.
  • The expected platoon partner at third base (Rutledge) injured his hamstring days before breaking camp.
  • Two players (Bogaerts and Barnes) have missed time on bereavement leave. The former missed an additional game because his return flight from leave was cancelled and a charter couldn’t be arranged in time.
  • Five active players (Betts, Kelly, MorelandRamirez, Ross Jr.) have missed games due to the flu, one did not miss a game but threw up in the middle of one (Benintendi), and two currently on the DL (Rutledge and Thornburg) have also taken ill.
  • The flu has gotten so bad that the play-by-play announcer (O’Brien) had to leave in the middle of the game, and the Red Sox decided to fumigate the clubhouse.
  • Our centerfielder (Bradley Jr), off to a Gold Glove caliber start, was just put on the DL with a knee sprain.
  • Tomorrow’s starting pitcher (Pomeranz), who had a stem cell injection in his elbow in the offseason, suffered triceps tendinitis and pitched poorly in spring training, started the season on the DL and is making his first start tomorrow and no one knows what to expect.
  • Our replacement for any injured starter is a 32 year old pitcher (Kendrick) who didn’t play in the majors last season. Also, he gave up 10 runs in 6 IP tonight.

Now while it’s true that issues like the flu can reasonably be expected to pass, there are multiple injury situations that could derail the Red Sox season. Most projection systems have already marked down their odds accordingly, in fact. Also, our depth is terrible.

But if you were told before the season about the above, you’d take 3-3, right? Exactly.

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