By: Jake Mackey
Fenway Park seems to have a certain buzz to it right now, doesn’t it? One that has not been there since probably 2008 when everyone in the five and a half New England states (half of Connecticut) would tune into NESN at 7:10 on a nightly basis. Yes, I am skipping right by the 2013 Red Sox season, because frankly that team did not have much buzz to it, and even the most diehard Sox fans didn’t really buy in until October.
It was not nearly to the point where this 2016 Red Sox team already is mid-way through May. The reasons for that is quite simple. This Red Sox team keeps you in your seat for nine innings, and as a fan you have confidence that this could be the start of something long lasting.
The 2013 Red Sox were a group of cast off veterans that all came together in one season and created the perfect storm, that doesn’t happen too often in sports. They were the number one offense in the majors, and in October they were lead by stellar pitching from Jon Lester and John Lackey.
35-games into this season, to the surprise of nobody, Boston once again has the highest scoring offense in the majors. In just the past four games alone they have scored a total of 51-runs. The pitching at times has been suspect as expected, however it is steadily improving. David Price for the first-time at Fenway Park pitched like an ace on Thursday night striking out 12. In addition, Steven Wright has come out of nowhere with 1 .52 ERA, and Rick Porcello has built off his strong finish to 2015 with a 6-1 record, with an impressive 3.11 ERA. Clay Buchholz, well he has been Clay Buchholz.
Now this makes it seem as though the Red Sox of 2013 and this year’s team are almost identical. Wrong. The one glaring difference is that this year’s team has young home grown talent that is here to stay. Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, and Jackie Bradley Jr. are all players developed in the Sox system, and they are the future of the franchise which we are seeing right now, as they are all tearing the cover off the ball.
(GIF Credit: Giphy.com)
As of right now, David Ortiz is going to hang up the cleats after this season, but with Hanley Ramirez hitting .313 and smashing 480-foot home runs he appears to be a serviceable option as the next designated hitter for the Red Sox, granted he keeps his head on straight.
The Red Sox of 2013 were gone once they stepped off the duck boats. Of the nine starting players for that World Series roster, only two are left. Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz. At the start of spring training in 2015, Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino were the only other players left from that squad, and they were dealt shortly into the 2015 season.
This Red Sox team is here to stay. They are not a bunch of guys with beards that were cast off from other squads and just happened to strike lighting in a bottle in Boston, they are established veterans mixed with young guys looking to take the leap to major league stars. That is much more reminiscent of the mid-2000’s Red Sox team’s as opposed to a one shot wonder squad in 2013. We have to wait an see now if the result can be similar, but so far so good.