Sox Dangerously Close From Falling Out of Playoff Race
Monday, July 26, 2010
It’s starting to slip away. Any chance the Red Sox had of winning the A.L. East is almost gone now. And they’re teetering on the brink of digging too deep of a hole to climb out of in the American League Wild Card race as well.
Sunday’s 4-2 loss in Seattle marked the third consecutive series they have failed to win since the All-Star break which is not a pattern Boston can continue with if they hope to be a playoff team in 2010.
A 3-run 8thinning for the Mariners erased a one run deficit for Seattle allowing the M’s to split the 4-game set with Boston. The Sox started their 10-game road trip dropping 2 of 3 in Oakland after coming out of the break losing 3 of 4 at home to the Texas Rangers.
Boston trails the division-leading Yankees by 8 games. They are 5 behind Tampa bay in the wild card race.
Once again the Boston bullpen failed to protect a lead. After another solid start by Diasuke Matsuzaka, Daniel Bard and Hideki Okajima combined to give up 7 hits and 3 runs in 1 2/3 innings of work turning a 2-1 lead into a 4-2 loss.
With the Major League trading deadline just a week away, a quality arm for the bullpen appears to be Boston’s top priority. Another bat would also help their struggling offense but both Victor Martinez and Dustin Pedroia are close to returning to the line-up. The hope is that the team will still be in some type of playoff race when they do come back from injury.
The Red Sox wrap up their trip with 3 in Anaheim against the L.A. Angels. The Angels are gearing up for a playoff run after acquiring Arizona’s Dan Haren Sunday to bolster their starting rotation.
Clay Buchholz hopes his second start since coming off the DL is better than his first when he pitched the series-opener tonight for Boston. Joel Pineiro counters for the Angels.