How about a little imagination game. Let's pretend that the Red Sox and Yankees swapped seasons.
The Yankees started the season 8-1 after playing the Rays and Marlins. The Red Sox stood at 5-5 after playing the Jays, O's and Rays.
The Red Sox then went into Yankee stadium, and saw Chris Sale give up five runs in five innings as part of a 14-1 beatdown. Then, the following day David Price gives up six runs in five innings. Only because Tanaka has to leave the game with an injury after an inning to the Red Sox squeak out a victory.
Worse than that, Brock Holt charged the mound because he was plunked as payback for a dirty slide, so he'll be suspended soon. And, JD Martinez has more strikeouts that Chris Sale, while Stanton hit a grand slam last night to keep the game close.
How would Boston fans and media be reacting? Would they point out that the Yankees had only played the Rays? Of course not. They'd be whining about the Yankees running away with the division. Would they be pointing out that they Yankees pitching only looks good because of the competition? Of course not. It would be confirmation that the Red Sox are no match for them. Would they notice the performance of the two Red Sox aces? Absolutely. They can't pitch when it matters. See?
So, how come the opposite isn't true in real life? Why is everyone waiting for the Red Sox to face "real" competition? Why do we assume the Yankees starters will just figure it out? Why do we assume that the Red Sox are doomed for failure? Because, boy, if the shoe were on the other foot, we'd sure be giving the Yankees a lot of credit.
Maybe the Sox deserve some of their own?
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