The Boston Red Sox avoided collapsing Monday night and got out of the evening with a 10-8 win. It looked like the Red Sox were going to cruise to victory, but things got slightly interesting down the stretch. Relievers certainly haven’t made things easy for most teams in the majors this season. Even for a team with Aroldis Chapman, the game is never over until all outs are recorded.
Chapman surrendered a 3-run shot with a 3-2 count and 2 outs in the top of the 9th against the Rays. That gave the Rays a 5-4 lead and Travis d’Arnaud a hat-trick against the Yankees. He throttled the Yankees for 3 home runs to beat the Yankees on his shoulders. Fortunately for the Red Sox, they have a lot of breathing room and were able to survive 4 runs scored by the Blue Jays in the 8th.
It’s an uneasy feeling being a Red Sox fan late in games. Their bullpen has been a liability throughout the season and is the most glaring reason what is different from last season. The best it appears they can hope for this season is a wildcard berth. Down by 9 games in the AL East to the Yankees, they’re going to need something drastic to change soon if the Red Sox are going to win the division.
That includes the Yankees tripping and choking themselves to death. It also includes overtaking the Rays, who are currently 5 games behind the Yanks for 1st. The good news for the Red Sox is that the trade deadline hasn’t come and past yet. There is still room to improve. They pulled the trigger on a deal recently to acquire Andrew Cashner from the Orioles.
Cashner has been under the radar this season in Baltimore and I don’t see it as a bad deal. He’s thanking his lucky starts to get out of Baltimore and go to a contender just like that. This isn’t a blockbuster, but it may come back to prove big for the Red Sox. Cashner gets his first start with the Red Sox at Fenway tonight. The Blue Jays will counter against the veteran with rookie Jacob Waguespack, who has appeared in two games as a bulk reliever. Head below for our free Blue Jays vs. Red Sox pick.
Toronto Blue Jays vs. Boston Red Sox Pick:
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For the Red Sox to have a realistic shot at making a run in the postseason, they’re going to have to address their bullpen. What has typically been considered as a major strength of the club, the Red Sox are 15th with an ERA of 4.45 from their relievers. A middle of the road bullpen is not good enough when it comes to playing postseason baseball. In any event, Cashner was a nice addition for the rotation. He’s found a way to get back on track in 2019, and the Orioles were able to parlay his success into a trade.
His value isn’t going to get any better than it is now. Fresh off a stretch of impressive outings by Cashner, he finds himself pitching for a contender. It feels like throughout his career he’s never had a chance to pitch on a good team. He spent most of his career with the Padres, a year in Miami, then time with the Orioles and Rangers corroborates that.
The Red Sox get Cashner hot from Baltimore, as he comes over to Boston with an ERA of 1.35 and 0.65 WHIP in his last three outings. He also has a record of 3-1 and 1.41 ERA in his last five, preventing more than 2 runs on the board in all five games. Also note that Cashner has allowed 3 or less runs in eight of his last ten outings, so like I said, a nice move by the Red Sox to target Cashner.
Waguespack has made two appearances, one of which came against the Red Sox in his most recent showing. That was in Toronto at Rogers Centre, though. He picked up the first win of his career in that one, as he held the Red Sox to 6 hits and 3 runs in 5 innings. Waguespack owns a 5.00 ERA and 1.11 WHIP in 9 innings.
Expect the Red Sox to get to Waguespack the second time around. This will be the most stressful environment he’s pitched in after pitching in Tampa and Toronto to get his major league career underway. Give me the Red Sox on the runline. They should have this game by 3 runs tonight.