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We have them right where we want them! Isn’t the 2008 ALCS looking a lot like the 2004 and 2007 ALCS? While the Red Sox have little chance at moving onto the World Series, there always is just that little chance. They have looked really bad in two games at Fenway Park, punctuated by a 13-4 embarassing loss at the hands of the Rays in Game 4. Now, the Sox need to win Game 5 at home with Daisuke Matsuzaka on the mound, and win Games 6 and 7 in Tampa Bay to move on. Hey, they did it to the Indians last year…
Now, it has just been a tough few days in Boston sports. The Red Sox have lost three straight ALCS games to the Rays, and the Patriots were blown off the field Sunday night against the Chargers, leading to some harsh but true words from SoB’s Jeff. Look up Boston sports fans! Keep your chin up…the Sox have done it before and are more than capable of doing it again.
If the Sox are going to come back, they need to do just two things: 1) Score runs, 2) Pitch well. Easier said than done I know, but they have to improve their pitching. This offense (with David Ortiz and J.D. Drew playing so poorly) cannot afford to be down 5-0 in the third inning again. Last year they had Mike Lowell and Manny Ramirez to pick them up. This year, they just have Jason Bay and Mark Kotsay in their place. Bay has been god, but Kotsay is no Lowell.
David Ortiz needs to step up bigtime. Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis have done their jobs (again), but Ortiz needs to provide a punch in the middle of the lineup in order for the Red Sox to have a chance. When Kevin Cash provides your best offensive moment (1-3, HR in Game 4), then you know there’s something very wrong.
One good thing for the Red Sox is that Tim Wakefield will not be starting again in this series, as he was just bad Tuesday night. Wake finished with five runs allowed on six hits and two walks in 2.2 innings. He allowed three colossal home runs, one each to Carlos Pena, Evan Longoria, and Willie Aybar.
Look at the bright side, the Sox have their best matchup in Game 5 with Daisuke Matsuzaka against Big Game James Shields (the same matchup in the Sox Game 1 win). If they manage to win Game 5, they have postseason hero Josh Beckett in Game 6 (he reminds me of the 2004 Curt Schilling). If they somehow get to Game 7, they have their best pitcher on the hill in Jon Lester.
Let’s just win one at a time…