It doesn’t exactly feel like the magical year of 2013 for the Red Sox just yet but there’s been plenty of reason to think this year will be better than 2014 and last year. The Sox swept the Yankees this past weekend at Fenway and while New York looks like a basement dweller, there was some magic in the ballpark for the first time in a long time.
Last Friday night, in particular, felt different. The Red Sox found themselves in an 0-2 hole against their rivals before Jackie Bradley Jr. drove in a pair of runs with a double in the seventh and David Ortiz blasted a game-winning two-run home run to left center in the eighth.
In addition to the feel-good vibes, the Red Sox’ numbers are solid as well. Dustin Pedroia is batting .324 on the season. Xander Bogaerts is at .306. Travis Shaw is at .322. David Ortiz has a team-leading five home runs and 19 RBIs.
Pitching-wise, Steven Wright (2-2, 1.37 ERA) and Rick Porcello (5-0, 2.76 ERA) have been pleasant surprises. New closer Craig Kimbrel had a few bumps in the road in his first month in Boston, but he does have eight saves on the year.
Unless David Price (4-0, 6.14 ERA) turns out to be the free agent bust of all free agent busts, it’s likely that he’ll correct his issues soon.
All told, so far so good for the 2016 Red Sox. They’re in first place in the AL East with a 15-10 record. A year ago on May 3, they were 12-13. On May 3, 2014 they were 15-16. On May 3 during the championship season three years ago, they were 20-9.
Early season test
The Red Sox can make huge statement this week in Chicago as they’ll take on the team with the most wins in the majors, the White Sox, who own an 18-8 record. Wright will get the ball for the Red Sox in the series opener and will square off against Jose Quintana. Clay Buchholz will look to get on track Wednesday night when he takes on John Danks. Henry Owens is slated to get the ball for the Sox on Thursday in the series finale and Chicago will counter with Carlos Rodon.