If anyone from New England stayed up till one in the morning to watch the Red Sox lose six out of eleven games on the West Coast, then…sorry. However, you were not alone, and you were also not alone if you felt frustration and anxiety as the Sox quietly ducked out of a playoff spot for the first time since April.
Now that all is said and done, the Red Sox sit three games out of first place in the AL East and a half game behind the Deroit Tigers for the second wild-card spot.
Opposite-coast games are tough for any team, but when you pair the exhaustion of eleven games in eleven nights-after a six hour flight from Boston, in which three different ballparks were visited-and, incredibly, the fact that the Sox have had to endure 43 games in 44 days-their toil is understandable.
The one off-day the Red Sox get in the midst of their mind-bending stretch comes today-and they get to relax on yet another long flight, this time back to Boston to take on the Yankees the next night. The six-game homestand is much needed, as the Sox will soon be on the road again for another 11 games, in four cities.
A few months ago, the entire city of Boston seemed confident in the Red Sox and their playoff chances. Now, with a little less than two months to go, hope is dwindling. If the Red Sox can manage to take four or five of six from the Yankees and Dbacks-a highly achievable goal, temperaments will improve, but the outlook after their next eleven game set on the road remains to be seen.
A few more thoughts…1. Why can David Price not get to ten wins? Who pitches for the Sox in a one-game playoff? 2. A-Rod finally stepping away from the diamond. One more series at Fenway? 3. ESPN can’t help but make sure that JBJ is always in the headlines as a trade candidate in the offseason. 4. Benintendi worth the wait so far.