Sorry about the lack of attention. So here is a quick catch up on what happened while we were out:
We had just started June with 10 straight wins. Entering the "easy" inter-league stretch of the month, we were 11-2 for the month and in first place. We took 2 out of 3 against the Brewers and then promptly fell apart, blaming it on the stupid "rules" of the game. Yes, that is right. We complained about the fact that Papi couldn't play DH in the national league parks. (This was not my proudest moment as a Sox fan). The embarrassment amounted to considerable egg on our face as we went 2 and 4 against the lowly Padres and Pirates. (The Pirates to their credit are 1 game out of first in the NL Central). We didn't do much better as we rolled through Philly. In the end, we made the NL road trip respectable by sweeping the H'astros and going 6 and 6.
For June we ended up 16 and 9 (.640 winning percentage). That still rocks, but we did lose our grip on first place.
We are now at the All-star break and we've have started July with a blazing 9 and 1 record. Once again we're back in first with an overall record of 55 and 35. Will we have another mid-month slump?
Our pitching situation is looking bleak. Beckett's knee is sore, Lester isn't 100%, Bucholz is working through a back strain, Lackey is working through a severe case of the SUCKS and DiceBB's arm has fallen off. Wakefield has regressed from previous years and while Andrew Miller has added some spark, I don't see him making a lasting contribution to the Red Sox second half. Through 2011, the Sox starting staff has been entirely mediocre netting 7.0 wins above replacement (WAR) value. In comparison the Yankees have netted 8.7. (The Phillies led the league with 15.4).
One ray of hope is the bullpen. It hasn't been as streaky as last year and overall the team is the second best in the league (WAR), netting 3.7. The Braves have the top spot in the majors with 4.9 WAR.
All said and done, I think we might be in the market for an arm as we approach the trade deadline. I think we will be fine in a 7 game series with Beckett, Lester and Bucholz, but to get there we will need some help.