Editor’s note: NESN.com is going to tell the story of the 2012 Red Sox in Bobby Valentine’s words. Each game day, we will select a Valentine quote that sums up the day for the Red Sox.
Adrian Gonzalez is not one to say much about how he’s playing, whether it’s how he feels about his performance or what the critics are alleging.
The steady first baseman is the prototype of the player who just goes and does his job, is happy when his numbers help the team win and is satisfied after a good day’s work.
Gonzalez has had his ups and downs since moving to Beantown from San Diego. His numbers and character called for a giant contract, and he got it. But the stats he’s posted since joining the Red Sox have been fodder for the discontented. Gonzalez has produced — he just hasn’t been otherworldly. And that’s been an issue for some.
Amid the complaints, though, have been some superb stretches of baseball where Gonzalez has been everything the Red Sox needed and more. And after he and the team have crawled their way out of the gate this season, taking blows along the way as they try to just get up and reel off the wins they know they can, Gonzalez appears to be primed for another strong stretch.
The veteran first baseman turned 30 on Tuesday, a reminder that he has just the combination of skill and experience to be a potent player in the league again.
Gonzalez went 2-for-3 on Tuesday night, a day after going 2-for-5. Sparing the 0-for-8 line in Sunday’s 17-inning aberration, he was 6-for-10 against the Orioles. And Gonzalez’s upswing doesn’t just include the hits, which often don’t tell the whole story. Gonzalez has looked better at the plate, and he’s been sending the ball the other way and putting it where it needs to go. These are not flukes, but rather signs that this man could be getting revved up.
Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine, who has been patient in his synopsis of Gonzalez all season, was completely behind his player on Tuesday night.
“Adrian’s playing really well right now,” he said. “He’s rolling.”
As one of the most talented players on the Red Sox roster, that’s exactly what Gonzalez needs to be doing: rolling.
And if he can continue his mini hot streak, he could roll the rest of the Sox right on with him.
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