The Red Sox started the year 6-13, but they have no intention of beginning the second half the same way.

Xander Bogaerts says Red Sox are ready to deliver second-half blow


Chris Sale was mediocre again, Brandon Workman gave up three runs in 1/3 of an inning and the Yankees swept the Red Sox in an early season two-game series.

Boston was 6-13 on April 17 following a championship campaign in which it won 108 games and never faced an elimination game in the playoffs.

It was a gut punch to the Red Sox, their fans and every single pundit who picked Boston to repeat. The players themselves were stunned as this was like nothing they faced in 2018.

"I just think teams were excited to play against us man, and every time they played against us they showed up big time," shortstop Xander Bogaerts told Omnisport in an interview on behalf of Aruba.com this week. "They wanted to beat us extra bad."

Possibly the most difficult part of the first half to deal with was the consistency of the Red Sox lineup.

Through 90 games this season Boston leads MLB in multiple offensive categories including runs, hits, batting average and on-base percentage. The calling card of the 2018 World Champions has remained the same.

The difference has been the pitching rotation which has featured a Chris Sale who has fought to find his form from previous seasons as well as his velocity and injuries to big-name starters David Price and Nathan Eovaldi.

That has resulted in a compromised pitching staff which sits middle of the pack in just about everything. Boston has been forced to play from behind and make up for lack of consistency among its pitchers and that has resulted in plenty of ups and downs.

Red Sox Offensive Stats

Stat Red Sox MLB rank
Batting average .272 T-1
On-Base Percentage .345 1
Hits 874 1
Runs 509 T-1

Red Sox Pitching Stats

Stat Red Sox MLB rank
ERA 4.59 17
FIP 4.10 25
Batting average against .250 15
Quality starts 33 T-18

It's something 2018 MVP candidate J.D. Martinez says the Red Sox weren't quite ready to deal with.

"We didn't have that adversity (in 2018)," Martinez told MassLive.com at the All-Star Game in Cleveland this week. "We didn't have those ups and downs. Those are the ones that wear you out. Those ups and downs, those are the ones that grind you out mentally.

"When everyone's cruising, like it was last year, that was easy. It was fun. That was just a roll. You knew somebody that night was going to get a big hit. You knew you were going to win the game somehow. Going to the ballpark with that attitude took so much pressure off our shoulders. It was just different."

Boston has had to fight for every single win in 2019. That fighting has paid off with a bounce back from a poor start as it now sits at 49-41 (good for third in the AL East) following that 6-13 start by going 43-28 the rest of the way. 

They truly took every team's best shot, just like Bogaerts said, and it appears the Red Sox are starting to learn how to roll with the punches. Bogaerts truly believes the team is starting to adjust and expects a much better second half.

"We kind of collectively as a team, we kind of got hot and went on a nice little run," Bogaerts said. "But the second half's going to be big for us, we're going to play with a lot of passion coming off of a few days off and we know we're starting at home so we should have the upper hand."

The Red Sox start off the second half of their season against the Dodgers at 7:10 p.m. ET on Friday.



Hernandez to miss one spring start

Felix Hernandez injury update: Mariners ace expected to miss only one spring start

Hernandez left Monday's game against the Cubs after being struck in the pitching arm by a line drive, though he avoided serious injury.


Making sense of 2018 MLB free agent

MLB free agency 2018: Where should the top remaining players end up?

A number of MLB free agents have finally found a home this offseason, but there are still plenty of intriguing players still out there.


Coach fired for marijuana stance

Texas college coach fired for rebuffing recruit over Colorado’s marijuana law

Texas Wesleyan baseball coach Mike Jeffcoat was fired for telling a recruit the team was not interested in players from Colorado.


Clark sounds off on issues

MLBPA union head Tony Clark sounds off on tanking, pace of play

Tony Clark said commissioner Rob Manfred made his changes to pace of play without any approval from the MLBPA.


Steinbrenner says people are scared

Yankees' Hal Steinbrenner: 'People are concerned about us'

With the acquisition of Giancarlo Stanton, some are calling the Yankees "The Evil Empire" once again, and Steinbrenner is OK with that.