Boston Red Sox: 3 players that need to break out of their current slumps

Boston Red Sox first baseman Bobby Dalbec (29) Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
Boston Red Sox first baseman Bobby Dalbec (29) Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports /
2 of 4
Boston Red Sox
Enrique Hernandez #5 of the Boston Red Sox (Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images) /

Boston Red Sox player who needs to bust his slump No. 3: Kike Hernandez

Kike Hernandez dominated the postseason for the Red Sox last season. He was Boston’s best hitter for most of the playoffs; he delivered the game-winning sacrifice fly against the Tampa Bay Rays in the ALDS, and continued his torrid stretch with three home runs in the first two games of the ALCS against the Houston Astros.

It seemed like Hernandez was set to carry over the momentum from his finish to last season, but instead he has stumbled out of the gate. Hernandez is hitting just .187 with one home run and 12 runs batted in so far. His WAR of 0.0 according to portrays him as a league average player. He certainly didn’t look like one in the playoffs last season, though.

Hernandez had some big expectations heading into the season, and he has failed to reach any of them so far. He’s been bumped out of the leadoff spot in favor of Trevor Story (who also could have easily made this list) after he made it his own last season. His fielding in center field remains exceptional, but until his bat wakes up, it won’t really make a difference.

Related Story. Sox latest loss shows they are beating themselves. light

Maybe Hernandez simply went through one hot stretch in the playoffs that caused everyone’s expectations to be way off for him, but the Sox have been burned by his lack of production to open the season. They held onto him and moved Hunter Renfroe, in part because they felt they could count on him to produce in a similar way he did last season. So far, that’s been a poor call on Chaim Bloom‘s part in the front office.

The good news for Hernandez is that he is going to have as long as he needs to figure out his issues. Jackie Bradley Jr. has unsurprisingly been even worse than Hernandez to open the season (.169 BA, 0 HR, 5 RBI) and the only potential call up from Triple-A is Jarren Duran, who struggled during his initial stint in the majors last season. Hernandez has a long leash, but he’s going to have to start finding his way on base soon if he wants to stay in the lineup.