Last night it finally felt good to be a Red Sox fan and it’s all thanks to Josh Beckett stepping up and declaring himself the ace of the Boston staff.
8 innings, 0 R, 0 ER, 10 K, 11 ground ball outs, 1 walk, 103 pitches, retired the last 14 straight batters.
Just take a second and re-read that line and consider a couple things. He should have gone nine innings, that was against the New York Yankees line-up, national spot light and in the face of a 1-7 start.
The Red Sox pitching staff has been god awful this year. Going into last nights game, they had the worst ERA of any starting rotation in all of baseball. There was no clear cut ace and disappointment was everywhere. We were all proven terribly wrong with our assumption that the starting rotation was a strength of this team.
Red Sox nation was desperate for something to root for. The one win during the home opener was good but it wasn’t fun to watch. John Lackey got knocked around and the win was lucky.
Last night Josh Beckett toed the rubber and was beyond impressive. It was the best I have seen him pitch in two years. He proved that he is a lot better then most people are giving him credit for and the drop off can be credited to injury.
Because of the injury plagued last few years from Beckett, no one was really sure what to expect out of him this year. He was given the big contract extension last season and almost everyone questioned that decision.
Coming into this season everyone wanted to know where he was going to fit in the rotation. Terry Francona announced John Lester as the opening day starter, and no one disagreed. Then Lackey and Clay Buchholtz were announced as numbers two and three leaving Beckett as the teams forth starter.
Last night Beckett reclaimed the number one spot in the rotation and proved to be the stopper he always has been.
While I refrained from total panic after the terrible first week, I’m now completely confident that this Red Sox team will turn things around and be force in Major League Baseball before the season is over.
Its amazing what a single game can do isn’t it?