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Did the Red Sox Burn Out Their Clutch?

Khris Davis (Winslow Townson/AP Photo)

Anticlimactic Opener

I understand that it’s only 7 games into the season, but something is already missing. Where’s the magic? After an ending like last year, how could this season for the Red Sox start off so slow? First off, the Sox lost their season opener to the Baltimore Orioles, but it was a well-pitched affair on both sides. The Red Sox had the hits, they just couldn’t seem to link enough of them together to make something happen. The Sox did go on to win their next two games in Baltimore, until last night, those were the only wins they had.

Rough Weekend

Next, Opening Day rolled around, and don’t get me wrong, the opening ceremony was spectacular, but the Sox did drop the opener to the Milwaukee Brewers. After Clay Buchholz got absolutely shelled for 13 hits and 6 runs in just 4.1 innings Saturday night, another thing that we didn’t see happen last year, the Red Sox clawed back from 4 runs down to tie it up giving them an opportunity to walk it off in the bottom of the ninth.

David Ortiz, who had a scheduled day off at the start of the game, came in to pitch hit. Now if this were last year, one of the most magical seasons maybe in all of baseball history, David Ortiz would’ve hit it over the bullpen and everybody would’ve gone home happy. However, this year it hasn’t quite worked out like that. Instead, Papi grounded out harmlessly to the second base side and the Sox went on to lose the game in the 11th inning. The Red Sox went on to get swept by the Brewers in the home series opener.

Moving Forward

I know it’s early, but last year’s team started winning these close and meaningful games right off the bat (pun intended) and continued to do so all year. Where has the clutch gene gone that was so potent last year?

Their task doesn’t get any easier with the hard hitting Texas Rangers coming into town. Thankfully, they pulled out the Game 1 win, but there’s still more baseball to play. It’s close and important games like these that can dictate the attitude of the club for the entire season and last year it was their team chemistry that made us fall in love with the group of winners we got to watch go all the way.

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