May 12, 2021

Gammons: Depth helped lead to Red Sox fall. Can it now key their resurgence? (The Athletic)

How did the Red Sox fall from a championship, 108 regular-season wins and a plus-233 run differential to 84 wins, a plus-73 run differential and the trade of the best player they have developed in this century?

First and foremost, it was about starting pitching. Then it was about depth, and the lack of it.

What it was certainly not about was that after years spent learning to hit, then having to battle back from Tommy John surgery, Christian Vázquez, at the age of 28, became the everyday catcher. He led the American League in games caught (117), he hit 23 homers, he put up a .798 OPS and 103 OPS+; he even played first, second and third base. With a mix of injuries and downsides, Vázquez, Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts joined Mookie Betts as championship-caliber players.

In a spring of change, nothing has changed with Vázquez. He may catch fewer games and occasionally play first base or DH against left-handed pitching. But in an era when J.T. Realmuto…

Read “Gammons: Depth helped lead to Red Sox fall. Can it now key their resurgence?” at The Athletic