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Red Sox Must Play Better Within AL East to Win the Division

The Boston Red Sox are tied for first place in the American League East with the Baltimore Orioles with both teams sitting at 37-27, two games ahead of the Toronto Blue Jays.

John Farrell the manager of the Red Sox said his team must play better within the division if they are going to win the AL East.

The Red Sox are 15-16 in AL East play. Included in that is a recent stretch of 2-5 against Toronto and Baltimore the two likely teams to battle Boston for the division title.

The Orioles and Blue Jays are both full of big bats and the 5.16 ERA of Boston in games versus Toronto and Baltimore speaks loudly to their overall 15-16 record versus the division.

A number of the 34 homers allowed to the Orioles and Blue Jays have taken place at inopportune times.

Farrell said the game is clearly based on power – with power bats, power arms and particularly in the AL East.

Under the team’s current ownership, the Red Sox have finished above .500 in division play during each of the 7 seasons they reached the playoffs.

While it is important that pitchers hit the right spot during important at bats against offenses that are high-powered, possessing an offense that is able to keep pace is a critical feature as well.

Boston has four or five players who since starting hot have started to cool and the team is averaging just 3.6 runs per game over its past six games at home.

Hanley Ramirez is one of the players who has cooled off. Entering Boston’s Wednesday game, Ramirez went 30 games without hitting a home run and saw his average fall over 30 points.

However, on Wednesday, Ramirez belted a 393-foot three-run home run for the Red Sox and that could be a sign of a turnaround on his part.

Overall, the Boston bats have kept the team in more games than not. David Ortiz the veteran DH leads the team in home runs and RBIs and continues to prove that his decision to retire at the end of this season might have been premature.

Boston will need another strong starting pitcher either one that comes from within the current roster or a trade for one. The Red Sox also will need more consistency at the plate with their younger hitters if they want to keep pace with the powerful hitting lineups of both the Orioles and Blue Jays.

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