At the ides of June, the Red Sox had lost 7 in a row, were 11 under .500 and 9 back in the division. In the 3.5 weeks and 21 games since, they have gone 14-7, winning series against the Royals, Rays, Blue Jays (3 W’s in a 4-gamer), Astros, and Marlins (they did lose a series against Baltimore–of course). They are 4 under .500 and 5 back (probably 5.5 at day’s end since the Yanks lead 4-2 over the A’s in the 7th), and currently the hottest they’ve been all year, having finally won 4 in a row for the first time this season. It would take continued excellent play to make this season more interesting, but at least the season’s not over before the All-Star Break. This weekend at Fenway Park, they can narrow the gap between them and the Yankees in this last “first half” series.
The Yankees are in first place and look to banish the Red Sox further into the cellar and widen their 2.5-game division lead while the other three AL East teams play first-place clubs (Nats @ O’s, BJ’s @ Royals, Astros @ Rays).
Upcoming pitching matchups:
Pineda vs Buchholz
Nova vs Rodriguez
Eovaldi vs Miley
Getting swept would put the Sox back where they were a month ago RE: division crown hopes. Sweeping would get them within reach. Should be an interesting series.