Jason Bay has been the MVP of the AL so far this season… at least in my eyes. He is leading the league in RBIs with 69, has 19 round trippers on the season which is third in the league, has been a solid defensive presence for the Red Sox all season long, and has the left field starting position for the 2009 All Star Game in St. Louis locked. This guy is unbelievable. He is surely going to be in the running for the MVP at the end of the season for all these reasons. He has just been on a tear all season long, slumping very rarely. But lately, Bay hasn’t been succeeding the way he has so far this season. Today was a perfect example of his rapid decline in production. As I sat on my couch watching the Red Sox take on the Orioles only a day after the O’s came back from nine down, I witnessed Jason Bay have his worst game at the plate all season. He stepped up five times and every single time, he walked back to the dugout with another strikeout on his back. He went 0-5 with five strikeouts. He looked absolutely dreadful. He wasn’t even close on some pitches. On one pitch, he just waved at a fastball over the middle-outside part of the plate. It was hittable but it was like he didn’t want to hit it and just waved his bat over the general area. It was extremely strange.
Now, despite Bay’s slump of late, the Red Sox have still continued to win. They have gotten production from other guys that have filled in for Bay’s non-production. Jacoby Ellsbury has heated up after being moved down in the lineup. David Ortiz has been slowly getting his swing back. Dustin Pedroia and JD Drew have both continued to hit well. The emergence of Nick Green has also been huge as he has started to get it done at the plate as well as in the field. Now, Bay made a nice catch two days ago to end the game in Baltimore. He made a sliding grab that filled the highlight reels for the next day. So, his defense is still there, but his bat has been silented. The Sox would like to get his bat back to assure the team’s success but right now, his bat is the least of their worries. Bay is a STELLAR professional and will get out of this slump which is his first major slump since joining the Sox. And saying this is a major slump isn’t much since it has pretty much only been four or five games since he has been successful. He’ll do fine. He will get out of it soon and he will continue to be in the running for the MVP and will continue to help the Sox. I hope he doesn’t help them that much so that the Yanks can gain some ground on the Sox but I do like this guy and hope he does well.
Nick Green. Not many people know about him. For those of you who don’t know Mr. Green, he is a 6 foot, 180 pound shortstop for the Boston Red Sox. Now, Green has been having a solid season, doing everything right. He’s hitting .292, has driven in 24 RBI coming into today, has played solid defense behind the Red Sox pitching staff, and has just been a great fit for this Red Sox team. So, over the course of the game, the Red Sox took the lead, the Braves tied it up, three Braves were ejected for arguing, and Nick Green hit a walk off homer. He took the first pitch the opposite way and wrapped it around the Pesky Pole in right. His reaction to the home run… well I don’t know how he said it exactly but it went something along the lines of this: I didn’t know it was a walk off until I saw the people running out onto the field. Well, congrats Nick Green. You’re having a great season so far and this just adds to it. Keep it up man.
Now, being a Yankee fan, I don’t normally congratulate Red Sox players on succeeding and don’t normally tell them to keep it up, but Nick Green is a young guy that is having a great season, despite not starting every day. He splits time with Julio Lugo. It’s good to see young guys do well in the big leagues despite what team they are on. It shows, me at least, that this league is going somewhere in the future. Hopefully he’s not juicing.
That’s another thing I’d like to take note of. In this week’s Sports Illustrated, there was an article on steroids. The article was in the Scorecard section of the magazine and was titled “Without a Clue.” One of the lines in the article was this. “Sportswriters are lost: should we celebrate big home run numbers or be sickened by them.” The article talked about a blogger blogging about Raul Ibanez’s hot start. I am tired of reading about steroids. I mean, it’s obviously ruining the sport but enough is enough. All we can do is continue testing and suspending those who get caught. Honestly, I don’t think there is anything else we can do.
So enough is enough. There is some hope in the future of baseball (Nick Green). That’s a good sign. Well, that’s all I got for today.