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May 13, 2013

Crunch Time

Back to earth

The Red Sox have been slumping a bit over the last couple of weeks after an outstanding April, and that shouldn’t be much of a surprise to anyone.

Sure the Red Sox are looking like a much better team than most expected them to be this season, and they will be in the AL East and Wild Card hunt throughout the season. But we all knew Boston could not keep up the pace it set in April, and it would have to come back down to earth in May.

Boston’s pitching has still been strong even if a few cracks in the rotation and bullpen have sprung up. Offensively the Sox are also a solid team but runs have been tough to come by in May, a lot of that having to due with the slumping Mike Napoli and Will Middlebrooks.

It turns out the Red Sox are not the world beaters they were in April, but they are certainly better than what they’ve shown in May. They are back in the pack now and expect the Sox to stay there for the remainder of the season. I’m sure all Red Sox fans would be happy if you told them before the season started that this team was going to contend for a playoff spot.

Season over

Red Sox closer Joel Hanrahan was bumped from the 15 to the 60 day disabled list last week with an elbow injury. On Saturday the prognosis got much worse as the Sox revealed that Hanrahan will be out for the remainder of the season as he needs surgery on his injured elbow.

Hanrahan was supposed to improve the back end of the Sox bullpen this season but he struggled with injuries and production. Fortunately the Red Sox have bullpen depth as they have gone to their third different closer this spring in Junichi Tazawa thanks to a stint on the disabled list from closer Andrew Bailey.

Bailey’s injury, however, is not serious and he is expected to return to the Sox bullpen shortly.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru

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