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The MLB starts up again Friday for the second half of the season after taking a few days off for the All-Star Break. The Red Sox are starting off the second half at .500, but are getting some guys that have been missing from the lineup for quite some time this season. Jacoby Ellsbury who has missed three months is reportedly returning to the lineup tonight in Tampa Bay and Carl Crawford is reportedly returning Monday.
Chip Buck of FireBrandAL.com spoke with 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich about whether or not these guys returning will be able to contribute right away, what will the future performances of Josh Beckett and Jon Lester look like and the chances the Sox make even a wild card spot with the schedule they have left.
Jacoby Ellsbury by all accounts is ready to return and Carl Crawford pretty much said he’s coming back whether he’s ready or not, but will they help or hurt this Sox team having missed so much time?
“Honestly those two guys coming back to the lineup could add as many as four wins over what either Nava or Podsednik could do in the second half if they were forced to play everyday themselves.”
Are there any concerns though that Crawford may be rushing to get back because of pressure he might be feeling to return?
“I think the biggest concern is how’s he going to play after having what, he had a wrist injury, a shoulder injury and now a groin injury. That’s a lot of injuries to have in a short period of time and that’s whats going to have a bigger effect on his performance.”
The guys moved on to talk about the issues with starting pitching. Jon Lester has struggled going just 5-6 and by all accounts under performing. Josh Beckett hasn’t been any better on the mound going just 4-7 and both guys have and ERA’s over four. What does statistical analysis tell us about what the future performances of these two guys could look like through the second half of the season?
With the schedule the Sox have left not being the easiest especially over the next few week, what are the chances the Sox even grab a wild card spot by the time the regular season wraps up?
“It’s going to be a tough road pretty much for everybody and the next couple of weeks are going to be huge because of the upcoming trading deadline.”
Do you think the Sox will make the playoffs this year or fall short once again?