Ready and Willing

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Ready and Willing

While everyone in Boston or those of us with a soul at least are a little sentimental over the departure of Kevin Youkilis, we have no choice but to turn the page and move on to the reality of the Red Sox situation.

It's a little scary; sort of a departure from what we've grown accustomed to in this era of superstars and big spending. But at the same time, it's a good scary; an eager scary. Like jumping out of a plane, or bungee jumping or streaking the field at Fenway.

Plus, it's a scenario that we've all spent the last two months begging for. We can't turn back now. The new era is upon us and the only thing to do is embrace it.

Will Middlebrooks 23 years old 51 career games 144 career at-bats.

No longer the third baseman of the future, but the third baseman of the now. The guy the Sox will count on every single day, after only a small body of work and with little to no insurance on the back end.

It's like that cheesy cliche where the dad's teaching his kid how to ride a bike, running along side and holding onto the back while the little bugger pedals away. There comes a point where Pops knows all he can do is trust his own judgement and his child's ability, let go and hope for the best.

Yesterday afternoon, the Sox finally let go. Or more accurately, they finally found someone who would take Kevin Youkilis and allow them to let go. But either way, Middlebrooks is off. The keys to the corner are in his hands. And should be fun to watch him navigate the roads.

Personally, I'm not too worried. It was one thing for Middlebrooks to come up after Youk's injury and run off a little hot streak. But after what he went through these past few weeks? To never be quite sure when he'd be in the line-up To have to deal with being at the center of the back and forth between Youk and the Sox To be smack dab in the middle of the never ending controversy about toxicity and playermanagerownership dynamics

And to still be hitting .326 with a .946 OPS?

That's a nice. That's a nice, indeed.

With Middlebrooks, the future is finally now. And I can't wait to watch it unfold.

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Quotes, notes and stars: Pomeranz 'made one pitch that hurt' Red Sox

Quotes, notes and stars: Pomeranz 'made one pitch that hurt' Red Sox

BOSTON - Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 4-2 loss to the Detroit Tigers:

QUOTES:

"He pitched as we had anticipated at the time of the trade.'' - John Farrell on Drew Pomeranz.

"I had a good curveball and I was locating my fastball a lot better. I was in a lot better counts all night, but I made one pitch that hurt us.'' - Pomeranz on his outing.

"He was able to limit the damage against a very good offensive team. He pitched well enough to win. I just wish we could have put more runs on the board for him.'' - Jackie Bradley Jr. on Pomeranz.

 

NOTES:

* Until Monday night, the Red Sox had won their last six series openers.

* Drew Pomeranz has allowed four or fewer hits in 12 of his 18 starts this season.

* Eleven of Travis Shaw's last 15 hits have been for extra bases.

* Jackie Bradley Jr. had his 25th multi-hit game.

* Sandy Leon is hitting .500 (11-for-22) with runners in scoring position.

* The Red Sox are 21-21 in games decided by two or fewer runs.

* Dustin Pedroia (walk, single) has reached base in 28 straight games.

* Xander Bogaerts has 133 hits through 97 games. Since 1940, only Wade Boggs (134 in 1983; 135 in 1987) and Adrian Gonzalez (135 in 2011) had more.

STARS:

1) Justin Verlander

Verlander has enjoyed a bounce-back season of sorts this year, and the Red Sox got to see it up close Monday night as Verlander limited them a single run over six innings.

2) Jose Iglesias

The former Red Sox shortstop haunted his old team with a two-run homer in the sixth to put the Tigers ahead to stay.

3) Drew Pomeranz

The lefty absorbed the loss, but pitched well enough to win, giving up two runs in six innings while striking out seven.