Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Lester gives the Sox bullpen the night off

Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester threw a complete game last night in Boston's 6-1 win over the Mariners.

The Boston ace has struggled with crappy run support in his starts this year, but the guys finally got the sticks out for him with recently recalled Daniel Nava and catcher Kelly Shoppach hitting home runs to allow Lester the breathing room to throw pitches confidently.

The Sox are now on a four game win streak with three straight from division leading Cleveland and last night's win against Seattle.  One more game against the M's tonight with embattled Josh Beckett on the mound.  Beckett got shelled his last outing and made things worse by tweaking the fans with his response to the poor pr move of golfing on what was supposed to be a rehab day for an injury.

After a rocky start, is the bullpen finding its groove?  Hard to say as Bobby V has had to mix and match like a mad scientist to find guys who can put up solid innings.  As of the last three weeks though, the bullpen has the best era in the league -- 1.47 over 73 2/3 innings.  And for the moment, the closing team of Andrew Miller, Vincente Padilla, and Alfredo Aceves seem to be getting it done.

The guys are still in the cellar with a ways to go to get out.  A two game series against the Rays starts Wednesday then I think interleague play begins, so who knows if they can make up any ground in the tough AL East.  There's a reason the baseball season is 162 games long -- plenty of time to get it right and work through anything.

Here's hoping . . .

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