02 April 2011
The Red Sox choked yesterday.
We got up early on a Rangers team that has just as much offense as we do, and eventually their bats proved better than ours. Lester looks off from the start, Crawford looked like he'd never seen a southpaw before and Bard imploded in the 8th.
There were some very encouraging moments as well, like Ellsbury reaching base four times, stealing a base and scoring two runs, Gonzo's 2-4, 3 RBI day and Big Papi's opposite-field dinger (off a lefty!) to tie the game in the 8th... but this whole mess started with Lester.
His final line for the day was 5.1 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 3 HR... and zero strikeouts. Lester's never coughed up 3 homers in a start and he hasn't posted a goose egg in the K column since April 9, 2008 vs Detroit. That's pretty much the defenition of a fluky bad game.
But don't head for the Tobin just yet.
If you've paid attention over the past few years, you already know that Lester always struggles in April. I'm sure it drives him nuts, but it's the ugly truth:
2008 (MAR/APR) : 7 GS, 1-1, 4.36 ERA, .275 BAA, 23 BB, 22 K
2009 (APR/MAY): 11 GS, 4-5, 5.67 ERA, .296 BAA, 24 BB, 74 K
2010 (APR): 5 GS, 1-2, 4.71 ERA, .241 BAA, 15 BB, 32 K
Those are some pretty bad splits, but Lester has proved capable of overcoming bad starts for three years now. He finished 16-6 with a 3.21 ERA in 2008, went 15-8 with a 3.41 ERA in 2009 and almost won 20 games last year, finishing at 19-9 with a 3.25 ERA.
Bottom Line: Yesterday sucked, but it's par for the course with Lester at this point. In 2010 he got in the groove quicker, going 5-0 with a 1.84 ERA in May... and that enabled him to make a run at 20 wins. He could do it again this season, but his next start will be at Fenway against the Yankees, so he'll need to shake this one off quickly.
|< Prev||Next >|