Red Sox: One shot at redemption

Kelly Shoppach, left, and Alfredo Aceves, right, will have this 10-game homestand 
to flex their muscles and get back in the race.

There have been portions of the recent Red Sox schedule that have stood as “defining” stretches, times when optimists hope the club can prove that it remains relevant. Each one ends with little fanfare and more ammunition for the growing legion of pessimists. The six-game road trip that concluded Sunday in the Bronx was one such stretch, again doing little to turn around an increasingly awkward and lackluster campaign.

If there are any optimists left (there was a recent sighting of one in Saugus), they must be gearing up for the 10-game homestand that begins tonight, the next, and perhaps last, of those “defining” stretches.

The homestand, including visits from Detroit, Minnesota and Texas, is the longest this season. Once complete, the Sox play 32 of their last 50 games on the road, including two trips to New York and a nine-gamer on the West Coast.

Here are three things that must occur to restore hope:

1. David must dominate. Entering last night the Sox were 4-7 since David Ortiz went down with an Achilles injury. They’ve scored five runs or less in eight of those 11 games, six times scoring three or fewer. Boston is a top-notch offense with Ortiz in the lineup. Without him, it is pedestrian. All signs point to Ortiz returning Wednesday night when he is eligible to come off the disabled list.
 
2. Buch(holz) the trend. Raise your hand if you are sick of hearing that the Red Sox need Jon Lester and Josh Beckett to pitch better. As true as it is, it’s a tired statement. Too obvious. What they need almost as much is for Clay Buchholz to stay on fire. The righty is 4-1 with a 2.47 ERA in his last eight starts. He can set a tone for the homestand tonight in the series-opener against Detroit — and perhaps continue to support an exceptionally average staff.

3. Survive the deadline. It seems likely that general manager Ben Cherington will stand pat at the trade deadline. Perhaps he will make a cosmetic move, but once the deadline comes and goes tomorrow, maybe those still left in the clubhouse can look at one another, realize this is their team and begin to play with a chip on their shoulders. The value in trading a big name will likely not be there throughout MLB and bringing in a big name would take a boatload of valuable prospects.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
News

Boston Strong: One year on from Boston Marathon…

  For more than a century the Boston Marathon has been an even centred around sportsmanship, endurance and athleticism, but there's no denying the face…

Local

Hillary Clinton headed to Boston for women's leadership…

Former U.S. Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is set to visit Massachusetts Wednesday amid continuing speculation about making another bid for the presidency in 2016.

Local

Boston Marathon: Marathoners ready to run, honor victims

Scores of runners will cross the Boston Marathon starting line in Hopkinton Monday and embark on a 26.2-mile journey to Boston in honor of the victims.

Local

MIT student, Rhodes scholar, dies

Eliana Hechter, a student at MIT and Harvard, died, her family said. The announcement was posted on MIT's website.

Television

‘Mad Men’ recap: Season 7, Episode 2, ‘A…

Peggy and Lou are horrible, Bert's racist, Don is honest(ish) and Roger and Pete are frustrated. "A Day's Work" not quite worthy of "This Will Be Our Year."

Television

'Game of Thrones' recap: Season 4, Episode 3,…

The problem with the devil you know is that ignoring them doesn’t mean they simply lie in wait. It allows them time to do things…

Television

Discovery cancels 'Everest Jump Live' special in wake…

The Discovery Channel has indicated it will not be moving forward with "Everest Jump Live," a planned special about mountain climber Joby Ogwyn's effort to…

The Word

'X-Men' director Bryan Singer drama continues

  News broke late last week that "X-Men" and "The Usual Suspects" director Bryan Singer is being sued by a man who said Singer molested…

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox walk off with…

Red Sox pick up first walk off win of 2014

MLB

Red Sox and Orioles meet Monday morning at…

Red Sox and Orioles meet Monday morning at 11 a.m.

NHL

NHL video highlights: Bruins smack down Red Wings…

NHL video highlights: Bruins smack down Red Wings in Game 2

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox defeat Orioles, 4-2

Brock Holt the difference in the Red Sox' win

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.