I wish I could blame Martin Perez’s start on yesterday afternoon’s pollen count in Detroit but I can’t. In his last five starts for Boston, Perez has an ERA of 8.53. Remove one ice cube from that tumbler you’re about to fill with scotch and let that sink in. 

As the Red Sox are dipping in the standings, now a game and a half back of the Rays in the AL East, Mr. Perez is having issues locating his pitches. Yesterday this issue manifested itself in an inning and a third of work where his fastball location was mostly middle-middle. And the now five games under .500 Tigers used his lack of command to stake themselves to a three-run lead on five hits.  

Little Help for the Pen 

Phillips Valdez got the call to relieve Perez and gave Alex Cora two and one-third innings of hitless relief but when he gave way to trade deadline acquisition Hansel Robles the Sox Manager regretted that choice. (Just because Bloom gives him to you doesn’t mean you have to play him, Alex). 

Robles gave up three runs on three hits in an inning. To make a long story short the Sox pen has been anything but bullish coming out of the break. And the deadline acquisitions have not done anything to help the situation. 

A needed spark for Boston

I understand that Chris Sale has one more rehab start to get through before he gets to rejoin the Varsity, but that start can’t come soon enough. This team looks beaten down – both on the mound and at the plate. The fire that burned during the first half of the season where you thought no lead was insurmountable is now just embers.

Boston sits in second place playing .500 ball over their last thirty games and 3-7 in their last 10. With the lack of lighter fluid brought to the BBQ by Bloom at the deadline, let’s hope Sale has some gas in his can. 

DONT’A HIGHTOWER: NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS’ NUMBER ONE QUARTERBACK

As always you can follow/give me grief on Twitter @Tmurph207