Yes, it was against the Marlins. But when you can win a game that Rick Porcello, Robbie Ross Jr. and Matt Barnes pitched in, you know something special is happening.
While the rest of the American League East has collectively shit their pants, the Red Sox have caught fire, winning four in a row for the first time since 2013, and eight out of their last ten games. They’ve now won four series in a row, and are averaging nearly seven runs per game (6.8) over their last six games. I suppose the timing would seem appropriate. You know, with that whole three-game series at Fenway Park against the first-place New York Yankees thing that’s happening this weekend.
I was literally laughed at on the Sports Hub two weeks ago for saying that the Red Sox were back in it. And who knows? This weekend series could go one or two ways. Personally, I think you’re crazy if you say that they’re not back in it at this point, especially given how the rest of the division is playing right now. But things could drastically change in one direction or the other after this weekend series. The stars have aligned for the Red Sox to be sending their three best pitchers to the mound with Weird Haircut Clay on Friday, Eduardo Rodriguez on Saturday and Wade Miley, who has pitched well against the Yankees this year, going on Sunday.
As for Rick Porcello’s performance on Wednesday night, hell, I’ll take it. If you want to nitpick, you can point out that the Red Sox have given Porcello a lead 24 times this year, and he’s given up runs the very next inning twelve times, with the most recent being against the Marlins on Wednesday. However, a quality start is a quality start, and I honestly didn’t think we’d get anything close to that this time out, regardless of who he was facing, so I’ll take it. I think there is something to be said for Porcello working with Ryan Hanigan behind the plate, and also, which I find to be quite strange, he’s pitched much better in front of the home crowd that can’t stand watching him pitch than he has on the road. In his last six starts at Fenway Park, dating back to April 29, Porcello has a 3.72 ERA. For the money he’s going to be paid beyond this year, that’s not great, but it’s pretty damn encouraging to be able to manipulate a Porcello statistic and say that he hasn’t sucked in a particular situation.
I can’t wait to drink JJ’s tears this weekend. They probably taste like Natty Ice, Chinese food and cigarettes, but I don’t care. It’s the principle. Bring on the Yankees.
PS: I posted the new episode of the Section 10 Podcast last night before it got buried by about six blogs in 45 minutes. So if you missed that, then you can check that out HERE.