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Arlington Cemetery

Posted By Brian Joyce On Apr 4 2011 @ 7:50 pm In Boston Red Sox | No Comments

The Red Sox got buried this past weekend in Arlington, Texas. I guess you could say, the headline says it all. The Red Sox pitching staff got lit up.  In the three games against the Rangers this past weekend, they allowed 26 runs, 21 extra-base hits, and 11 HR’s. Red Sox pitching also allowed 11 walks. Texas outhit Boston 34-20 in the three games. Ian Kinsler and Nelson Cruz homered in each of the three games. In the three games, Jon Lester, John Lackey, and Clay Buchholz combined to give up 18 runs over 15 1/3 innings. Lester didn’t even strike-out a batter on Friday afternoon, something that hasn’t happened since 2008.  No surprise that Lester got roughed up on Friday because he has been a notoriously slow starter in his career.  Lester’s ERA in the month of April is 4.95.   Boston is off to their worst start since 1996.  That year they started  0-5 and you guessed it, they lost the first three games of the season against the Rangers. The 1996 edition of the Red Sox went on to win 85 games and finish in third place. I don’t see that happening this year, but stranger things have happened. When you have the second largest payroll( nearly 161 million) your not supposed to get dominated like the Red Sox just did this past weekend against the Rangers.  Dustin Pedroia summed up the lost weekend in Texas the best, ” we got outplayed, out pitched, got outhit, they kicked our butt”.

What’s on Tap: The Red Sox stay on the road and start a three game series tomorrow night in Cleveland. Josh Beckett starts in Cleveland for the first time since beating the Tribe back in October of 2007 (game 5) when the Red Sox staved off elimination and Beckett pitched a gem that night. We all know what happened after that, Boston would win 6 straight games and win the World Series. Beckett is coming off an injury plagued season of 2010,  he only made 21 starts and pitched in only 127 2/3 and finished 6-6 with an ERA of nearly 6.00 In 2011, Beckett begins the first year of a 4 year contract totaling 68 million dollars. It’s time for Beckett to earn his keep and bounceback and regain his form.  Beckett hasn’t had a consisent season since 2007, when he won 20 games which led the American League. Red Sox manager Terry Francona said recently about Beckett ” his pride took a beating last year”.  This year Beckett is starting the fourth game of the season. In 2011 he is in uncharted waters when he starts tomorrow night against the Tribe.  Beckett has always taken the ball in either the first or second game of the season. The last time Beckett started this deep into the season, it was his rookie year back in 2002 with the Marlins when he was their fifth starter.   It speaks volumes about where Beckett  is in the rotation this year. He has nobody to blame but himself. If Boston had confidence in Beckett, they would have had him start in his home state of Texas, but that was obvioulsy out of the question. I believe if Boston is going to make a serious run this year, the Josh Beckett of 2007 needs to show up and shine in 2011. If Beckett stumbles this year, it could be another lost season for the Red Sox. Translation, no playoffs for Boston.

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