On April 28th, the Boston Red Sox are the best team in Major League Baseball.
Boston won their fifth consecutive game on Sunday with a 6-1 decision on the back of John Lackey and some scorching-hot bats. Lackey returned from the disabled list (where he had been since April 10th with a strained right biceps) and performed extremely well, allowing just 1 earned run over 6 innings, while allowing only 5 hits and striking out 4 Astros. It has been a long, strange journey for Lackey, and this marked his first start in Fenway Park since September of 2011, but he looked to be every bit of the “ace” that Boston paid for a few years ago.
On the offensive side for Boston, they banged out four doubles (one each from Dustin Pedroia, Daniel Nava, David Ortiz, and Mike Carp) as well as a 2-run triple from Stephen Drew in the 4th inning that gave the Red Sox the lead that they would never relinquish. Ortiz added an RBI single to go with his 7th-inning double, and “Big Papi” is now hitting with an absurd .518/.529/.871 slash line since returning from the DL. It’s been a story book return for Ortiz (including the famous “F-Bomb” on the day of the Red Sox return to Fenway post-bombing), and he has been able to key the offense throughout the streak.
At 18-7, the Red Sox are making everyone forget the disastrous 2012 season that they endured, and their five straight wins are good for the league’s longest winning streak. Some people would say that sweeping Houston puts an asterisk by the accomplishment of winning three straight games, but it is certainly difficult to sweep even the league’s worst team. Their +40 run differential also leads the league, and if that is any indication (and it is), Boston looks to be primed for a run to the finish and a potential playoff berth.