Big Two North of the Border
Those footsteps are real now — the Yankees are just 3 1/2 back. That’s the smallest lead the Red Sox have had since May 1.
Granted, it would take a collapse of EPIC proportions to miss the postseason entirely but the Red Sox do not want to blow the division and homefield. With several guys banged up, they need to take care of business, get their positioning settled, and get guys rested before October.
There is a lot of pressure on two of the organization’s bright young pitchers the next two nights. Tonight, it’s Jon Lester, who has been very uneven and was hit hard in his last start. Tomorrow, it’s the no-hit kid, Clay Buchholz, who will be working on 12 days of rest.
Without Manny and Youkilis, the Red Sox are going to be challenged to produce offensively tonight against A.J. Burnett, who has been nothing short of electric of late.