Crack of The Bats

The Red Sox came back in dramatic fashion. All winter we’ve been talking about this hot and heavy offense and that’s exactly what we saw today with five home runs, four solo shots and a grand slam. We also heard a ton about the lack of an ace on the pitching staff, but Clay Buchholz is trying to show he’s still got it. I won’t get ahead of myself, but his outing today was his best I’ve seen in a long time- and pricey Jon Lester couldn’t secure his mediocre team a win last night- and I think people just have to wait and see how it turns out.

I get it. We are baseball fans. We are Boston baseball fans and we like to complain. The winter we’ve had gave us a lot to cry about. Jon Lester not signing with the Sox was probably better received than if he had because we could complain about it. But there’s a lot to enjoy this season. We have an offense that, if they stay healthy, will provide a ton of fun throughout the summer and well into October. Let’s be honest here, pitching might win more games, but an explosive offense is just more fun to watch. Few go to the park and squeal with glee at a 1-0 pitchers’ duel through seven.

We don’t have a World Series title to defend and we are coming off a losing season, which means, if patterns of late continue, we are in for a title. The young kids are taking over and for once in a longtime, it appears that the Red Sox might actually get lucky and live up to the hype. Mookie Betts will be the player. Jacoby Ellsbury showed flashes of. Xander Boegarts, inspired by the likes of Ortiz, Ramirez, and Sandoval, will regain the cocky confidence a player his age needs to show signs of being a star. By  June, we will have a young stud catcher behind the plate in Blake Swihart and another young, quick, athletic star of an outfielder in Rusney Castillo rounding out the team. It’s just a blow that we have to wait a year for Christian Vazquez who might prove useless once we get used to Swihart.

The bullpen might be a cause for concern, as will the starting rotation, but we also have a line of guys who are looking to prove themselves, either coming off a season of injuries or out of the shadows from Bona fide stars on another team. I’ll say it first, this pitching staff will be better than everyone expects, even outstanding for stretches. Don’t underestimate the power of the ground ball and the all-star, gold gloves in the field.

Speaking of, did everyone see and hear what Dustin Pedroia had to say on this opening day? Not quite? Well, he will show you the rest of the season. Pedroia is the heart and the soul of this Red Sox team. He will work his hardest and he will be the greatest and he expects everyone else around him to do the same. He won’t necessarily say it, but he sure will show you. Papi, Ramirez, and Sandoval will make things fun as much with their personalities and self-assurance as with their bats. They will be the type of trio you would call obnoxious and egotistical if they were on the opposing team. People will hate them and we will love them even more.

Baseball is growing more exciting in the next few years. Younger, cheaper teams are in the forefront. We will worry about the Mariners, Royals, and a host of National league teams the way we used to worry about the Yankees and Rays. The Yankees are old and the Rays are silly and we will laugh, while reminiscing about the good ole days of such a rivalry. Younger, cheaper teams play harder because they want it more and they don’t feel entitled. And some of the more expensive teams will feel as though they are among the younger and cheaper because they will bring joy back into the game- but maybe I’m a little biased because the Red Sox have that good vibe going.

Did I mention the Yankees suck?

Meal time! Before my workout this morning, I woke up to a hard-boiled egg and a cheesestick. It fueled me through a kettlebell strength circuit, a barbell strength circuit, and a run/walk that had me running faster at a steadier pace than I have in awhile. It felt good to be running that fast and feeling my heart beating. Got the Monday going off to a good start.

Breakfast was this bowl of overnight oats I made the night before and gobbled up after my workout. Oats, walnuts, raisins, dates, banana, milk, and cinnamon. Divine.

I was bummed when I realized I forgot my popcorn at home, but this salad was filling and delicious. The usual medley of I egged and some grilled chicken made my tummy happy.

Dinner was a delectable pasta meal. Spicy sausage, a meatball, whole wheat penne, and stir fried zucchini and red pepper. So good with a little red pepper flake and Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top. I couldn’t resist a piece of toast to sop up the sauce at the end.


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