Red Sox manager Alex Cora left little to interpretation when defining the root of his team’s recent rough patch.
“We’re not playing good baseball right now,” Cora said told reporters After the Red Sox fell to the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday night, 4-1. “It’s a lot of mistakes, and it’s costing us games. We need to start playing better baseball if we want to be the team that we envisioned in spring training. ”
Boston is currently in the midst of a tough stretch during which it has struggled mightily, losing three straight games and seven of their last 10. Many of these losses to AL East foes – who the Red Sox have yet to win a series against this season. – can be attributed to mental errors and sloppy miscues.
On Tuesday, the Red Sox surrendered the two game-deciding runs on pitcher Matt Strahm’s throwing error, ultimately losing the contest 3-2. One day later, they gifted another run to the Rays off of right fielder Rob Refsnyder’s indecisiveness on pocketing a ball.
Boston’s play on the basepaths hasn’t been much better than their fielding as of late. Late in Tuesday’s contest, Alex Verdugo – who acted as the tying run – was picked off third base, thus squandering any hopes of a comeback. On Wednesday, Rafael Devers was picked off attempting to advance to third in the fourth inning.
Cora recognized his players’ accomplishments – most notably a series split with the red-hot Yankees last weekend – amid the team’s struggles, but still asserted there’s room to improve.
“We had a great weekend, I’m not gonna blast them,” Cora said. “But you have to keep playing. Like I said, nobody is going to feel sorry for your injuries or who is playing or whatever, you have to show up every day. We’ve been very sloppy lately, and we have to get better. “
According to Cora, Boston could take a page out of the Rays’ book to get back in the win column.
“There’s a lot of moving parts, but [the Rays] have a lot of moving parts, ”Cora said. “They have a lot of injuries, and they keep playing. They play 27 outs, and they play good baseball. And they are pitching, and they are hustling. That’s why they keep winning. “