Red Sox bats booming again

MIKE RUTSEY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:13 AM ET

TORONTO - There’s something about the Red Sox that brings out the worst in the Blue Jays.

Given that fact, it doesn’t look good for the Jays in the two-game series that opens Tuesday.

It will be the second series between the teams, the first being a four-game set in mid-April when the Red Sox were dragging their butts through the AL East basement.

But lo and behold, the BoSox dropped the opener in that series before crushing the Jays three straight which got them going a bit in the division.

The Red Sox still have a ways to go as far as sorting out their pitching, but these days they have their bats going for them. That is a lot more than the Blue Jays can say.

Leading the way for Boston is their leadoff hitter Jacoby Ellsbury, who carried a 17-game hitting streak into Boston’s game against the Minnesota Twins on Monday night.

Ellsbury was hitting .378 (28-for-74) with 10 doubles, 14 runs scored and seven stolen bases during the streak. It is the longest current hitting streak in the major leagues and the third-longest of Ellsbury’s career.

“He’s been on base, he’s been able to run, he can go from first to third, he can steal a base,” manager Terry Francona told reporters the other day. “We’re a different team. The havoc that you see some other teams do to us, he’s able to do to them. They have to pay attention to him. It makes us a better team.”

He has been the tablesetter for the big bats behind him.

“He’s been doing an incredible job the last three weeks or so of finding ways to get on,” first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said. “He’s been drawing walks, getting hits and extra-base hits, and being aggressive on the bases, which just helps everybody.”

Ellsbury isn’t the only bat in the lineup that has sprung to life.

Free agent Carl Crawford, who looked terrible in April when he hit .155, finally is making solid contact with his new team. Entering play last night, he had hit safely in all seven games he had played in May, going 12-for-31 (.387). Crawford had six multi-hit games in his past 14 games played.

“The whole month felt like rock bottom,” Crawford told the Boston Globe of his April woes. “Everything that possibly could go wrong, did go wrong. Even when I felt like I would get something going, there was just nothing.

“The most frustrating thing is when you get to the point where you say: ‘I don’t know what else to do.’ When you get clueless, that’s when it gets bad. Any player you ask, that’s a frustrating place to be.

“I lost the first round,” he said of April. “I can’t lose no more.”

mike.rutsey@sunmedia.ca


Videos

Photos