Tim Wakefield will not let you write him off.
With his mastery of the Devil Rays (against whom he is now 312-1) Monday, the Crafty Kunckleballer has thrown 15 consecutive scoreless innings — his best back-to–back starts by Game Score since he took the baseball world by storm in May and June 1995. It’s the second time this season he’s thrown at least 15 straight scoreless frames, the only time in his career he’s done that twice in one season.
Meanwhile, he marches on. Twenty-five starts, 25 decisions, just the ninth starter in the last 50 years to do that. Only Wakefield and Jack McDowell (20-7 through 27 starts in 1993) have gone so many starts without a no-decision since 1974.
At any rate, the Sox are in the midst of replicating the frustrating up-and-down pattern they’ve been wont to do. They are 4-3 in their last seven games, with no two-game streaks of any kind in there. If not for Theo’s brilliant deadline deal, the Sox would be 5-2 in that span and 14-5 in August. Alas, every day is not Christmas, and instead the Sox are a mere 11-8.
Nevertheless, for those seeking a little reassurance, consider this: With their win and the Yanks’ loss Monday, the Sox are 19-11 in their last 30 games. The Yankees are 21-9. In all of baseball, only the Yankees and Diamondbacks have a better record than the Red Sox in that span. In 30 days, New York has gone from seven back to five back in the AL East — a game-per-two-week pace that would leave them about two games short of the division title come Oct. 1. So perhaps it is indeed time to lay aside the panic in Red Sox Nation, at least for now.