Sox might keep on running through October
DENVER -- Aside from the historic stolen base by Dave Roberts in 2004, the Red Sox haven't been known much for their basestealing in Octobers of years past.
But under aggressive manager John Farrell, that could change this year. The Sox lead MLB with an 86.4 stolen base percentage, stealing 121 times and getting caught 19 times.
Starting on Aug. 9, the Red Sox had been successful in 37 straight stolen-base attempts entering Wednesday action.
"As long as we don't get thrown out, it could be a big edge," Farrell said. "I think that's the one thing that shines through is that typically, you don't associate a running team with a high-scoring team and yet we've been able to do it.
"There were times in July, we kind of ran into some outs and we shut it down for a little while to be a little bit more smart about it and not give away outs on the basepaths. Since then, our guys have paid attention to some situations inside a game where we've been able to exploit.
"And it hasn't been just the top three guys. It's been [Will] Middlebrooks, it's been [Jarrod] Saltalamacchia, it's been guys you wouldn't necessarily think of as basestealers and yet we've been able to capitalize on some of those situations."
When you are that successful in stealing bases, a lot goes into it. Farrell credits the behind-the-scenes work of bench coach Torey Lovullo, first-base coach Arnie Beyler and third-base coach Brian Butterfield.
"Our guys pay attention," Farrell said. "They pay attention to the work that Torey, Butter and Arnie have done to give us maybe a little bit of an advantage or a situation we might be able to take advantage of. And they've been spot on with their timing and when we feel like we've got a chance to take a bag, to their credit, they've trusted it. And that's probably the most important thing. They've trusted the information we give them or our coaches have given them, and they've been successful."