There is no shortage of superlatives that can be used to describe the 2018 Boston Red Sox.
Dominant? Yes. Overpowering? Check. Unstoppable? Let’s ask the Los Angeles Angels.
Boston came to L.A. as owners of a 13-2 record thanks to two series with the Tampa Bay Rays, a two-game set the Miami Marlins and trifecta of contests with the lowly Baltimore Orioles.
Skepticism of the Sox’s hot start was not unwarranted, but it’s time to throw that out the window.
The Red Sox walked into Angel Stadium on Tuesday, picked up the American League West-leading Angels, turned them upside down, shook out their pockets and made them walk home in their underwear.
10-1. 9-0. 8-2.
Those were the three scores of the Red Sox’s three-game trashing of the Angels this week. Boston hit 11 home runs in the series. Angels starters Shohei Ohtani, Tyler Skaggs and Nick Tropeano entered the series with a 1.51 ERA combined, and the Sox tagged them for 14 runs in 11 1/3 innings.
Now for another number: 16-2.
That’s the best record through 18 games since the 1987 Milwaukee Brewers.
The Red Sox are the class of Major League Baseball early on and it has nothing to do with the schedule. Boston leads the majors in runs, batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and RBIs. Their pitching staff is second in ERA, WHIP, and batting average against.
They could be playing Keanu Reeves’ Kekambas and it wouldn’t matter. It’s impressive.
Boston just completely ran over one of the best teams in the AL. In fact, the Red Sox made the Angels, who were on a seven-game winning streak coming into the series, look every bit as inferior as they did the Rays.
Wait until they play the Houston Astros or New York Mets if you want. Question their ability to continue playing at this level if you must.
Rationalize it. Analyze it.
But you can’t dismiss these 16-2 Red Sox.
Here are more notes from Red Sox-Angels:
— Eduardo Rodriguez recorded 20 swings-and-misses Thursday against the Angels. He had only one game where he registered 20 swings-and-misses in 2017, a September contest with the Oakland Athletics. Thirteen of those swings-and-misses came on the changeup.
— The Red Sox have committed five errors this season, four of them by Rafael Devers.
— Boston’s starting rotation’s ERA went up to 1.98 after Rodriguez gave up two runs Thursday.
— Angels star Mike Trout went 3-for-11 with no RBIs and no runs scored in three games vs. Boston.
— It was the first time the Red Sox completed a three-game sweep of L.A. since 2011.
— The 11 home runs the Red Sox hit against the Angels was the most they have hit in a three-game series since 1977.
— Boston is the fourth team since 1961 to win 16 of its first 18 games.
Thumbnail photo via Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports Images