The Red Sox have averaged 8.8 runs in the past five games (and, thanks to their shaky bullpen, won only two of those games).
What's behind this offensive surge? Rafael Devers batting second is a good place to start.
In six games as the No. 2 hitter, including the past five, Devers is hitting .545 (18-for-33) with an OPS of 1.545.
That torrid stretch was on full display Tuesday night in Toronto when Devers went 4-for-5 with two homers and six RBI to lead the Red Sox to a 10-6 victory.
Devers (now hitting .329 with 14 homers, 56 RBI and a .926 OPS) may not have been selected for the All-Star Game but his manager says he's "one of the best third basemen in the big leagues." And it's hard to argue with him.
“He’s consistent at what he’s doing,” Alex Cora told reporters in Toronto after the game Tuesday night. “He’s dominating the strike zone, he’s playing good defense, he’s a good baserunner, he’s a complete player. And he’s only 22. We’re glad we were patient with him. We know that there’s going to be times that he’s going to be 22, but overall he’s one of the best third basemen in the big leagues, and he’s showing that on a nightly basis.
Devers' knowledge of the strike zone has improved drastically, Cora said, even in the past month or so.
“The walks were up and the strikeouts were down. And when you start doing that, great things are going to happen. There was a period there he was leading the league in hitting [in May] and he got caught up in the average and he was swinging at everything, chasing hits, he’s not doing that anymore. … He’s doing everything right, right now.”
After flip-flopping between Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi hitting first and second, it's safe to say, the Red Sox have found their No. 2 hitter.
Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.