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Is Adam Ottavino a Cause for Concern in Boston?

The Boston Red Sox are still in first place in the American League East. They won seven straight series before falling this past weekend to the Texas Rangers, losing 3 out of 4. But one area that Red Sox fans will always have worries about is the bullpen. This season, it seems like the Red Sox reliever catching a lot of heat is Adam Ottavino.

Ottavino was traded to the Red Sox from the Yankees in late January. When the Red Sox first got Ottavino, I was a bit in shock; but I was also extremely happy. Ottavino is a reliever that has a wicked slider and can fool hitters at an elite level. But now that some time has come and gone, we need to look into things a bit more!

The ERA

As of right now, Ottavino has an ERA of 3.86. Last year with the Yankees at age 34, he had a 5.89 ERA. Now honestly, this would look a lot worse if Ottavino was closing games for the Red Sox. But considering he’s more of a set-up man, this is a little more tolerable. However, the ERA needs to come down for Red Sox fans to stop convincing themselves that Ottavino is really a Yankees spy!

The Walks

In 9.1 innings pitched, Ottavino has 7 walks, given up 5 runs, and 4 of those were earned. Walks are always a pitchers worst nightmare. First hitter of the inning walks score more often than not. Ottavino’s walk totals are a bit concerning. The Red Sox cannot be affording to give teams free passes when the pitching staff has enough problems as it is.

The Games Being Blown

Ottavino has blown a few games this season for the Red Sox. He blew the Minnesota game that ended the 9 game winning streak. He was the reason the Red Sox blew the series finale against Texas on Sunday. You can’t be the guy in the bullpen blowing games for a team that is trying to surprise people in 2021. Plain and simple!

In Conclusion

I wouldn’t hit the panic button on Adam Ottavino just yet. It’s only May and the Red Sox are still looking good regardless. But if Ottavino continues to falter in key situations, maybe the Red Sox will rethink keeping him for the stretch run. Fasten your seat belts Red Sox nation. The Ottavino experience is going to be a bumpy ride!

-Al Nahigian (@BigAl2793) 

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