Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 11/17/14
BOSTON — Mike Napoli’s power outage is still in effect. At some point, he’ll need to flip the switch back into its early-season position. Napoli exploded out of the gate this year, racking up extra-base hits and climbing to the top of the American League’s statistical leaderboard. Now, although Napoli is still getting on base at a decent clip, he’s failing to generate the same pop that made him such a middle-of-the-order threat earlier in the year. Napoli’s average sits at .262 and his on-base percentage at .345, both of which are comparable to his early-season figures. His slugging percentage continues to dip, though, as Napoli has only two extra-base hits in 20 June games. That includes one home run, which came all the way back on the first of the month. In Napoli’s defense, he’s had a somewhat tumultuous road this month, having missed seven games, including three in a row from June 14-16 because of illness. But it’s clear that something is plaguing Napoli at the dish right now, and it’s something that will become increasingly concerning for the Red Sox if at some point they start dropping off in other areas offensively. Napoli struck out four times against the Blue Jays on Saturday. The 31-year-old has always been prone to striking out, and the high strikeout rate has been there all of this season. (Napoli is among the major league leaders in K’s.) The strikeouts are much more difficult to deal with, however, when the power numbers don’t accompany them. So far, the Red Sox’ offense has managed just fine amid Napoli’s “struggles,” but it’s undeniable that the lineup is far more dynamic when he’s driving the ball behind Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz. That’s especially true now that Will Middlebrooks, who was supposed to be Boston’s other major power source this season, is no longer on the major league roster. Napoli has a reputation of being a streaky hitter, so a slump isn’t something that’s completely out of left field. In fact, it means that a power resurgence could very well be on the horizon. He’ll need to make some adjustments quickly, however, or else we could be looking at a bigger issue in due time. “We’re working to create some consistency. Obviously there’s been swing and miss in his track record. He just missed a couple of pitches today – tough day for him,” John Farrell said after Napoli’s four-strikeout game Saturday. “At times, his swing can get long and he can get beat with some velocity up. [Steve] Delabar expanded up in the strike zone [in the eighth inning] but we’re working to try and shorten that down.” Whether it’s shortening his swing, getting his timing back or overcoming some mental hurdle, Napoli must get back to his early-season level – or at least some sliver of it. The Red Sox are OK for right now, but a simple power outage could turn into a full-scale blackout if things don’t turn around. Have a question for Ricky Doyle? Send it to him via Twitter at @TheRickyDoyle or send it here. 
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

John Harbaugh: Bill Belichick is best coach of this century

Brandon Jennings suffers horrific Achilles injury

Van Gundy rips Bulls management about Thibs

Harbaugh lands first commitment at Michigan

NFL warns Seahawks about 'obscene gestures'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Lane Kiffin will remain with Alabama in 2015

Belichick: Patriots followed 'every rule' prepping footballs

Colts LB Andrew Jackson arrested on DUI charge

Sam Shields: Dez Bryant catch should have counted

Klay Thompson sets NBA record with 37 pts in a quarter

Hall of Famer Ernie Banks passes away

WATCH: Urban, OSU students send message to Mark May

The five best Super Bowl matchups ever

WATCH: Mike Riley gets big welcome at Nebraska game

Leonard Fournette's brother commits to LSU

Bledsoe not happy about other QBs trashing Brady

Red Sox P Joe Kelly predicts he will win Cy Young Award

WATCH: Bill Belichick drops 'My Cousin Vinny' reference

USC sends recruit personalized business cards

Coastal Carolina planning to install teal-colored field

The five most significant Super Bowls of all time

WATCH: J.R. Smith, LeBron half-court alley oop

Sesame Street makes "inflate" the word of the day

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Jennings suffers horrific injury

Harbaugh lands first commitment

Seahawks GM: I love Lynch's act

Lane Kiffin staying with Alabama

Belichick goes 'My Cousin Vinny'

Belichick: Patriots followed 'every rule'

Could Patriots have used a sauna?

Klay Thompson scores 37 pts in a quarter

Hall of Famer Ernie Banks passes away

Sesame Street makes "inflate" the word of the day

Which NBA player should get next on a signature shoe deal?

NFL's Deflategate statement doesn't say much

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.