Welcome to Rounding the Bases, where the LWOS Baseball editorial staff recaps the top four performances or plays for each week of the baseball season. Which players stepped up this past week? Which plays stood out from the rest? Read on to find out!
TOP 4 MLB PERFORMANCES WEEK OF 8/1/16
Steven Wright‘s Complete Game Shutout
The Boston Red Sox have been up and down all season. Sometimes they look like a championship-caliber team, and other times they look like a last place team. Lately, the bats, which have mostly been booming this season, have been relatively silent. Conversely, the arms on the mound, which have mostly been mediocre this season, have been much better. Yet somehow the Red Sox couldn’t seem to sync offensive fireworks with a solid start.
Following two tough, four-game series splits against the Los Angeles Angels and the Seattle Mariners, during which they lost four of eight games by a combined total of seven runs, the Red Sox desperately needed a strong, all-around team performance. And they really needed a solid start to back up the offense, which has mostly bailed out the rotation this year.
On Friday, August 5, Steven Wright came through. Facing the Los Angeles Dodgers, Wright went the full nine innings. He struck out nine while allowing three hits and a walk in his fourth complete game of the year. Wright had a tough July, but has been the best, and most consistent, starter for Boston all season. With his first career shutout now under his belt, the knuckleballer sits at 13-5 with a sterling 3.01 ERA and 123 strikeouts in 146.2 innings. Given the turnover and general inconsistency Boston has played through from its pitching staff, it isn’t hard to imagine where the team would be without Wright. He remains in the conversation, at the very least, for team MVP. Friday’s start proved that, and reinserted Wright into the Cy Young conversation.