Winning becomes so easy when the starting pitcher does well. The pressure eases off the offense. The bullpen has less responsibility. All the hitters have to do is compile a few consecutive hits. It's really simple.
Josh Beckett looks pretty good. I'm still not sold on him yet, as he had brilliant starts in '09 and still finished with a decent but disappointing 3.86 ERA. So far, though, he's been excellent. His fastball is up to 95, and he's challenging hitters with it. The changeup is fooling batters, and the curveball is biting. He's getting strikeouts, and when hitters make contact, they get under or over the ball. That leads to pop ups and ground outs. It's once again fun to watch him pitch.
Lester had another Quality Start on Sunday. He was aided by some double plays, as he scattered 3 walks and 6 hits. He didn't give up the big hit though. It was his first win of the season, but his third straight Quality Start.
Buchholz has me worried. We all assumed that this 26 year old with 25 good starts under his belt was going to be a sure thing for 17-20 wins and an ERA under 3.00. We forgot who he was in '09 and '08. His confidence rises and falls with each start, and right now he's on a downswing.
The offense is still gradually getting better. I'm sick of seeing Crawford leading off games though. Lowrie is red hot and should be at leadoff until either he cools, or Crawford gets his average over .150.
It's funny/sad that taking 2 games from Toronto has become worthy of celebration.
Another tough lefty (how much do we miss Victor Martinez?) faces the Sox as Ricky Romero opposes Daisuke Matsuzaka at 11 AM today.