The Boston Red Sox did not benefit from a change of scenery in Tuesday's home opener at Fenway Park, falling 7-5 to the Toronto Blue Jays.
The loss drops the Red Sox to 3-9 on the season, and they now are alone in last place in the American League East division.
There's still a lot of time -- 150 games, to be exact -- for the Red Sox to turn around their season and make a push for the playoffs. That said, the history of teams that start out 3-9 and recover to make the MLB postseason is not very good, as the the stat below from The Boston Globe's Alex Speier illustrates.
Since the introduction of the wild card in 1995, 57 teams prior to this year got off to 3-9 starts or worse. Of those, three (5.6%) made the playoffs.— Alex Speier (@alexspeier) April 9, 2019
The Red Sox certainly have the talent of a playoff team. This roster, minus Craig Kimbrel and Joe Kelly, won a franchise-record 108 regular season games and the World Series just last year.
For the Sox to show immediate improvements, the starting pitching has to taken a significant step forward.
Complicating matters has been the performance of Red Sox ace Chris Sale, who gave up seven hits and five earned runs over four innings versus the Blue Jays on Tuesday for his third loss in as many starts. The most concerning stat surrounding Sale might be his batting average against. Opponents hit just .169 against him in 2018, and that number is up to an astounding .462 this year.
It's still hard to envision the Red Sox not earning a postseason berth, even if it's one of the wild-card spots. But time is running out for the Sox to recover from this early-season slump.
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