General Red Sox

The 2011 Red Sox: Not That Bad So Far

The Red Sox of the Epstein era have almost without exception found their way to a .600 winning percentage by posting a .500 record on the road and winning two-thirds of their games at home.

  • 2009: .586 overall, .691 home, .481 road
  • 2008: .586 overall, .691 home, .481 road
  • 2007: .593 overall, .630 home, .556 road
  • 2005: .586 overall, .667 home, .506 road
  • 2004: .605 overall, .679 home, .531 road
  • 2003: .586 overall, .654 home, .519 road
  • TOTAL: .590 overall, .668 home, .512 road

(What an odd coincidence in 2008-09. I wonder how often that's happened.)

Tonight, the Red Sox begin their longest homestand of the season, 11 games. Through 24 games, they have played 15 games on the road and nine at home. I understand that this was the team that was supposed to go 162-0, but looking at it realistically in the context of past playoff-bound Boston teams, we should have expected the Sox to be 8-7 (.533) on the road and 6-3 at home, a total record of 14-10, without factoring in the strength of the teams they were playing (and the Red Sox have played baseball's toughest schedule to date, including series against all three AL division leaders and both teams tied for the wild card lead).

Instead, the Red Sox are 11-13, off the pace by three games, thanks to a 6-9 road record and a 5-4 home record. Splitting up the components changes the overall perception, I think. At this point, the Sox are below .500, and that's disappointing. But not as disappointing when one considers they are one game off their ideal pace at home and two games off it on the road.

(It's also worth noting, given all the historical comparisons made when the Sox started 0-6 and 2-10, that their current record matches, among other playoff teams, the 1967 Red Sox and 2009 Angels and exceeds the 2005 and 2007 Yankees, as well as matching the World Champion 1935 Tigers, 1973 A's, 1985 Royals and 1991 Twins.)

So, with 11 games to go — again, not counting for the strength of the teams they'll be facing — the Sox should at minimum go 7-4 at home. That would give the Sox an overall record of 18-17 and 127 more games to make up the three they've lost through the first month of the season.

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