|‘The clock is ticking’ on these Red Sox||08.05.12 at 10:07 am ET|
After the most devastating loss of the season, the harsh reality finally started to set in last night for the Red Sox. They are going to need a miraculous turnaround to make a postseason run.
Do the Red Sox feel the desperation?
“It’s a pretty harsh term,” Kelly Shoppach said after the nightmarish 6-4 loss to the Twins. “I’m not a big fan of desperation but we understand we need to win. We need to do things that we can do well and I think if we do those things, we’ll have a chance to win every night.”
The irony is they have two players who were on the two teams that completed such a miraculous run just last year.
Shoppach and Nick Punto were on the Rays and Cardinals, respectively.
The Rays caught the Red Sox, who were 10 1/2 games up in the wild card in early September. The Cardinals caught the Braves, who were 9 1/2 games up in the National League wild card in the same time frame.
The 2012 Red Sox have a lot more leeway. They are five games out of the wild card and in a format that allows an extra team to make the playoffs in each league. And Shoppach believes there is still time and plenty of talent in the clubhouse.
“Sure, sure I do,” he said. “This is one of the most talented teams I’ve ever been on. A lot of ups and downs throughout the season. We need an extended up.”
But don’t ask Shoppach to relieve 2011, even though he was on the winning side of things.
“I’m not talking about it,” he said.
Punto, on the other hand, thought the comparison was a good one.
“We were a mediocre team last year,” Punto said of the Cardinals. “In St. Louis, we were mediocre team team until September and we went on a really nice run, got some help from Atlanta and somehow came back from a 9 1/2 game deficit. The similarities here are very similar. We’re very mediocre. We’re not playing good baseball. We have the talent in the room to do it. We just haven’t so we need to know we need to go on this run. The clock’s ticking so it’s time to start playing good baseball.”
Still, the silence in the Red Sox clubhouse after Saturday’s game reflected just how shocked they are to find themselves 53-55 and falling fast in the playoff picture.
“I think just as surprised as everyone else,” Punto said.
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