The newest acquisition for the Boston Red Sox Eduardo Nunez debuts against Royals in Boston and does just what was expected
Hitting home runs is relatively common place for most teams in Major League Baseball. For the Red Sox, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Prior to last night’s action, the Sox had hit 102 home runs, the worst number in the league. While their .260 batting average is good enough for 4th in the league it’s still not good enough to translate into wins. This team needs results and they need them now.
Eduardo Nunez is one of hottest hitters in the game right now. No, he’s not a home run hitter but he certainly gets on base. Before coming to Boston, Nunez was on a tear. Nunez also represented the National League during the All Star Game. Nunez also brings the added bonus of having played in the AL East with the Yankees for the first four years of his career. Nunez provides a dual on base and stolen bases double threat.
No one will be looking his way to get the long ball so long as he does his part in the line up. Nunez walked in his first at bat, singled to left the 3rd, singled to right in the 5th, and in the 8th inning he grounded out to the short stop. Why was he exciting to watch on the bases? Royals starter Jason Vargas was a little uneasy as early as the first inning knowing there’s someone on base that could cause some trouble.
Eduardo Nunez numbers in San Francisco
If Nunez can inch closer to the numbers he had back in 2016 when he posted a .288/16/67/40 line, the team will have a potent top of the line up. Hopefully with Nunez in either the pole position or two hole, John Farrell can stop playing his now all too familiar game of shuffle the line up to see if it works. Nunez was crushing it in the month of July slashing .354/0/6/1 and had hit safely in six straight games.
Players can only adjust so many times before they get out of their rhythm. Pitchers think and attack hitters a certain way to each number in the line up. If only Farrell had known that last season, Jackie Bradley Jr. might not have had his wonderful hit streak come to an end. All things do come to an end, but there’s a chance it could have lasted a few more games. The world will never know.
Throwing in last night’s 2/3 performance, that would make Nunez 19/51 in July, boosting his already stellar average to .373. After a rather pedestrian month of April, from May on, Nunez has just played at an entirely different level. Nunez has hit .351, one of the best averages in the league to go along with four home runs, 25 runs knocked in and 11 stolen bases. This is the of the guys Boston needed, all that remains is a power bat.
While the Red Sox weren’t able to capitalize with the victory last night, the team should feel a little bit better knowing their newest teammate was worth it. The Giants received two minor league prospects to complete the deal. If both clubs schedules had matched up, it would have been very interesting to see them play one another. Fans haven’t yet forgotten about Pablo Sandoval and his nightmare time in Boston.
With the first game of a 10 game home stand, the Red Sox had better figure out how to go at least .500 or they will certainly risk losing ground against the Yankees in the division who have miraculously come to life after looking dead for much of the first half.
Photo Credit – Charles Krupa – AP Photo