Boston Red Sox: Xander Bogaerts is tearing it up

BOSTON, MA - APRIL 07: Xander Bogaerts
BOSTON, MA - APRIL 07: Xander Bogaerts /

Almost ten games into the 2018 season, Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts has filled up the box score and produced a multitude of big-time hits.

As of Saturday afternoon, the Boston Red Sox are sitting pretty with a record of 7-1 and are in first place in the American League East. A lot of their early success has to do with their impressive starting pitching.

Believe it or not, the Sox rank 20th in runs, only scoring 3 per game, according to To put that in perspective, the Yankees are ten spots ahead of them and only have a record of 5-4.

The “X” factor

The difference has been Xander Bogaerts. After a semi-disappointing year in 2017, the 25-year-old has been tearing it up at the plate. According to Baseball-Reference, the shortstop is hitting .344 with an on-base percentage of .364. He also has 11 hits in 32 at-bats already.

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This is a huge improvement after a horrid end to the season last year where he batted .059 in the ALDS against the Houston Astros. His performances in the playoffs have not been that impressive, with his total batting average being .214.

Bogaert’s is also slugging at .625, which is up from his career average of .412. He still needs to improve his plate discipline though. He already has six strikeouts and only one walk. Part of that has to do with his recent aggressiveness at the plate, and the other has to do with his willingness to swing at bad pitches. If Bogaerts figures out a way to acquire better control he could end up having a career year.

Much like with Mookie Betts, the reason Bogaerts may be producing at such a high level is that he doesn’t have as much pressure on him to carry the offense. It always helps when a power hitter like J.D. Martinez is in the lineup.

On Saturday afternoon against Tampa, Bogaerts went 2-3 with six RBIs and a grand slam. He now has three hits in his last 7 AB. The Boston Red Sox ended up winning the game 10-3 on Saturday.

Next: Eduardo Rodriguez can make his mark

Eventually, like every MLB player, Bogaerts will hit a wall for a short while. But hopefully, this production is here to stay for the long run.