BALTIMORE — Today was a page off the calendar. The Red Sox lost, the Yankees lost and see you tomorrow.
It’s easy to to think that the Red Sox should have beat the Orioles and punching bag starter Jeremy Guthrie, the man with the most losses in baseball. But there’s a reason winning 100 games is so unusual.
It’s not worth analyzing. They lost.
But a few things stood out in this game:
• Rookie Kyle Weiland looked like a starter worthy of more opportunities. He kept his fastball down, threw his breaking pitches for strikes and maintained his poise after falling behind 3-0. It’s hard to get excited about his recording a quality start against the Orioles, but for the 24-year-old, it was a nice accomplishment.
Jon Lester is lined up to pitch on Monday, Weiland’s spot in the rotation. It would not be a shock if the Red Sox optioned him down soon and added a spare reliever to their bullpen.
But when next a need arises, Weiland has proven he’s capable.
• Adrian Gonzalez is 2 for 24 since the All-Star break with one RBI and seven strikeouts. This obviously is the curse of the Home Run Derby.
Except it’s really not. Gonzalez was hitting .354 with a 1.006 OPS before the All-Star Game. Prior to this season, he was a career .284 hitter and had an .875 OPS. There was bound to be some regression in the second half of the season.
Yes, Gonzalez has benefited from playing in a better lineup and in smaller parks. But not to the point where he as going to hit 70 points above his career average and 131 points over his career OPS.
“I just don’t think you can do that all year,” Terry Francona said. “Not very many guys [do]. Sometimes you go through periods when you’re not seeing [the ball] as good as you were. That’ll get back. He was at such a pace, a torrid pace. I don’t think you keep that up.”
Gonzalez seemed amused at questions about his five-game “slump.”
“Stop thinking about,” Gonzalez said when asked what he would do. “Nothing changes. The worst thing to do is panic and that’s not something I’ll ever do. I’ve been through too many of these 2-for-whatever it is to know it’s a long season.”
He did admit he’s not comfortable at the plate, which has led to his not recognizing certain pitches and taking either bad or hesitant swings. He said similar things in April when he was hitting .244 after 12 games. Then he flipped the switch. Give it time. he’ll do it again.
By my count, there have been four balls he hit during the five games that could very easily have been hits. If they fall, we’re not having this discussion.
• Josh Reddick was 3 for 4 with a double and is making it almost impossible for the Sox not to play him in right field on Friday night once David Ortiz is back. Reddick is 23 of 63 (.365) with 10 extra-base hits and 14 RBIs in 22 games since being called up.
At some point, it’s a mistake not to ride that wave as long as you can and the Sox have reached that point. J.D. Drew has 11 extra-base hits and 22 RBIs all season.
Nobody can say this is Josh Reddick. But this is Josh Reddick right now.