Red Sox Notes: Boston Not Getting Complacent As Regular Season Winds Down

It would have been easy for the Boston Red Sox to rest on their laurels.
The Red Sox have boasted the best record in Major League Baseball for the bulk of the season and are poised for a deep playoff run. But thanks to a brief scare last week, the Red Sox aren’t taking it easy as the final month of the campaign rolls around.
Boston labored to split a four-game series with the Cleveland Indians and proceeded to suffer a three-game sweep at the hands of the Tampa Bay Rays, which prompted the Sox’s American League East lead to be trimmed to 6 1/2 games.
Since then, however, Boston has kicked itself back into gear.
The Red Sox took care of business in a two-game set against the lowly Miami Marlins, and despite trailing by seven runs in the seventh inning Thursday night, Boston managed to come back and blow past the White Sox in Chicago 9-4. Series opener starter Rick Porcello knows what awaits the Red Sox, who plan to keep their foot on the gas.
“I think we’re aware we have 27 games left,” Porcello said, as seen on NESN’s Red Sox postgame coverage. “I think that series in Tampa maybe woke us up a little bit and we understand that even with whatever lead we have against New York, we still have a bunch of games with them and some really good teams in September. There’s no time to rest or relax or anything like that. We have to continue to push and hopefully close out this division and get prepped for the postseason.”
Mookie Betts echoed Porcello’s sentiments.

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“You know you’re closing on the last month, but I don’t think we think anything of it,” Betts said. “It’s just one game at a time. Just have to make sure we get to the playoffs and anything can happen. But we have to get there first.”
In terms of “getting there,” the Red Sox’s magic number sits at 20 following Thursday’s win.
Here are some other notes from Red Sox-White Sox:

— Ian Kinsler arguably had his best night at the plate in a Red Sox uniform going 3-for-4 with two runs scored.
— The Red Sox love the seventh inning. After posting an 11-run seventh in Wednesday’s win over the Marlins, Boston notched a four-run frame Thursday to erase the White Sox’s lead.
— Blake Swihart continues to make his opportunities count. The young catcher smacked a pinch-hit RBI single in the seventh to plate the Red Sox’s first run of the game.
— Boston’s starting pitching hasn’t been very strong of late. Rick Porcello continued that trend Thursday when he allowed four runs on eight hits over just five innings. The Red Sox haven’t received a quality start since Aug. 23.