Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 4/6/13
Mlb-red-sox-tigers-may
John Lackey‘s injury is the big news, but the Red Sox actually played a game on Saturday. Well, they were supposed to, although it didn’t look like the offense was aware. The Red Sox entered Saturday’s game on the heels of a decent performance on Friday night. The Sox came away from the series opener with a victory, and they banged out 12 hits in the process, but Boston failed to put the game out of reach on multiple occasions. Still, to criticize the Red Sox’ offense on Friday required a little bit of nitpicking. Criticizing the unit on Saturday only required common sense. The Sox had just one hit until the ninth inning, and it was Jacoby Ellsbury‘s double to lead off the ballgame. Lackey was fantastic in his 4 1/3 innings before going down with the injury, and Alfredo Aceves yielded mixed results in his 3 2/3 innings, but the Red Sox never really stood a chance because they were unable to sustain a threat. Boston produced just five baserunners all game, and three came within the first three innings. While Friday wasn’t perfect, it was a far better effort than Saturday’s, which represents Boston’s first real offensive hiccup 0f 2013. The Red Sox entered Saturday’s game with a major-league best .397 on-base percentage, and an AL-best 47 hits and 19 walks. They recorded a double-digit hit total in three of their first four games. Yet J.A. Happ and three Toronto relievers were in control throughout Saturday’s tilt, striking out 11 hitters while tossing up a goose egg in the runs column. Perhaps the most concerning aspect of the Red Sox’ offensive struggles was the ineffectiveness of the middle of the order. Mike Napoli, Will Middlebrooks and Jonny Gomes figure to be three of Boston’s biggest power threats — Napoli and Middlebrooks went deep on Friday — but they were a combined 0-for-10 with five strikeouts on Saturday. Napoli is now hitting .130 through the first five games, while Middlebrooks and Gomes are hitting .200 and .273, respectively. Even Jackie Bradley Jr., who tore the cover off the ball throughout spring training and drew praise early on, suddenly looks human. He’s now batting .176 (3-for-17) after an 0-for-3, two-strikeout performance on Saturday. This is no reason to panic. Every team has an off-game, and the Red Sox’ other four games prove that they’re capable of stringing hits together. Plus, David Ortiz and Stephen Drew should make the lineup even more dynamic upon their respective returns. It’ll be interesting, though, to see how the Red Sox rebound from their first real offensive setback. Have a question for Ricky Doyle? Send it to him via Twitter at @TheRickyDoyle or send it here. Click here to read about John Lackey’s injury >>
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Patrick Kane’s rape case will soon be heard by grand jury

Brady issues statement on Facebook after having suspension lifted

Don Orsillo reportedly asked to lie about being fired by NESN

Matt Cassel believes Bills will keep three quarterbacks

St. Louis police seize scalpers' World Series tickets to give to friends

Eli Manning happy Tom Brady will play NFL season opener

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Phil Kessel has shed 13 pounds this summer

Cam Newton addresses ‘gang’ photo on Instagram

Steelers defense is younger and faster but not better

Duke basketball to visit White House next Tuesday

Report: Cowboys have interest in Broncos RB Montee Ball

NFL owners to discuss changing Goodell's disciplinary role

Bret Bielema wants Arkansas to play Miami, USC in future

WATCH: Ben Revere gifted Matt Wieters a home run

Judge Sarah Thomas as an NFL official, not a female NFL official

Redskins skip Robert Griffin III in jersey countdown

Wisconsin vs Alabama preview

Simona Halep popular with fans who want to kiss her

Patriots planned on raising a "Brady banner on opening night

Braves and Phillies sucking at the same time is rare

Montana St. linebacker delivers bone crushing hit in opener

Despite loss, all eyes still on Jim Harbaugh, Wolverines

Kirk Cousins discusses what it’s like to be called ‘Kurt’

Playoffs or not, Bryce Harper is the NL MVP

Donald Sterling’s wife Shelly seeking alimony

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

Wisconsin vs Alabama preview

Tom Brady issues statement on Facebook

Robert Griffin III and a dream deferred

Best, worst surprises of NFL preseason

The Gospel Of Harbaugh prepares for its ultimate test of faith

Meet the Utah Utes, the pluckiest program in college football

Iman Shumpert will name daughter Iman Shumpert Jr.

Dallas company celebrates Romo with DirecTV 'crownies'

Top 10 storylines for Week 4 of the NFL preseason

Matt Williams is still hopelessly married to the idea of the closer’s role

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker