He's recognized his struggles ad nauseum, promising that his clutch hits and productive numbers would eventually come back. In the meantime, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine elected to slide him down to sixth in the order.
And it may have awakened a sleeping giant. Because for the first time this season, it appears Gonzalez is turning the corner.
During Thursday's 7-0 victory, the first baseman –– and right fielder –– collected three hits and accounted for two RBIs. While those are numbers for just one night, Gonzalez admitted to feeling more in tune as of late.
"I've been feeling comfortable, I guess since that first day in Toronto," Gonzalez said. "Where I hit in the lineup has nothing to do with how I do. It doesn't have anything to do with anything else, either. It's just finding holes."
If this were to signify a revival, the turning point would actually have started during Wednesday's 2-1 loss. Although Gonzalez only tallied one hit –– a single –– he was encouraged by his approach and level of comfort.
Apparently, Valentine sensed the same vibes.
"I thought the single was a good at-bat [on Wednesday], but [on Thursday] with the bases loaded, he took the first two pitches," Valentine said. "He’s been swinging at that first pitch so often with men in scoring position that he hasn’t gotten into the at-bat. He got into the at-bat tonight, got RBIs on a double down the line and followed it up with good at-bats."
The next few games should truly determine whether Gonzalez has emerged from his slump. Since the Red Sox have won each of the last six games in which Gonzalez has posted multi-hit performances, he'll certainly look to deliver.
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