George Hale takes a closer look at the Red Sox season

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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - TODAY IS THE FIRST OFFICIAL DAY OF SUMMER.
IT WAS A LONG TIME COMING THIS YEAR.
IT IS ALSO THE TIME OF THE BASEBALL SEASON WHERE WE BEGIN THE PROCESS OF TAKING STOCK OF WHERE THE RED SOX ARE AND WHERE THEY ARE HEADING.
BOSTON IS IN THIRD PLACE IN THE EAST AND 6 AND A HALF BACK OF THE YANKEES BUT ONLY 3 BEHIND THE TAMPA BAY RAYS.
NOT WHAT THEY WANTED BUT NOT HORRIBLE EITHER.

AS UP AND DOWN AS THIS SEASON HAS BEEN THERE IS A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF OPTIMISIM IN RED SOX NATION.
A THREE GAME SERIES AGAINST THE MINNESOTA TWINS, ONE OF THE BEST TEAMS IN MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL, WENT WELL.
THE SOX WON 2 OUT OF 3 TO WIN THE SERIES BUT MORE THAN THAT RESEMBLED THE TEAM THAT WON THE WORLD SERIES LAST YEAR.
ON THE ROAD AGAINST THE TEAM WITH THE BEST RECORD IN BASEBALL WAS A MAJOR MOMENT FOR THIS TEAM.
NOW ONE SERIES IS NOT GOING TO BE THE ANSWER FOR EVERY PROBLEM FOR A TEAM THAT HAS UNDERACHIEVED LIKE BOSTON HAS.
BUT, WITH FINGERS CROSSED, IT MAY SIGNAL A NEW BEGINNING.

THERE HAVE BEEN A LOT OF UGLY MOMENTS IN THIS SEASON BUT AS THE WEATHER HEATS UP PERHAPS THE TEAM WILL TOO.
THE SOX ARE BACK HOME TONIGHT IN BOSTON TO OPEN UP AN EIGHT GAME HOMESTAND AGAINST THE BLUE JAYS.
AFTER THAT THE WHITE SOX AND THEN THE YANKEES .
MORE ON THAT IN A MOMENT.
CHRIS SALE GOES TO THE HILL TONIGHT WHICH IS HOPEFULLY MONEY IN THE BANK.
AT LEAST ON PAPER.

OF COURSE THE RED SOX AND THE YANKEES ARE SCHEDULED TO PLAY NOT IN FENWAY PARK BUT IN LONDON.
ONE OF THE TOP RIVALRIES IN MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL WILL FACE OFF ACROSS THE POND ON THE 29TH AND 30TH.
THE TWO GAMES WILL BE PLAYED AT LONDON STADIUM WHICH WAS BUILT FOR EVENTS DURING THE 2012 SUMMER OLYMPICS AND IS BASICALLY USED FOR SOCCER.
HOW THIS WILL ALL PLAY OUT IN THE FINAL RACE TO THE TOP IS UNKNOWN.
IT'S HISTORIC BECAUSE THESE ARE THE FIRST GAMES OF ANY KIND BETWEEN MAJOR LEAGUE TEAMS IN EUROPE.
THERE SEEMS TO BE HUNGER AMONG THE FANS THERE SINCE ALL 60,000 SEATS WERE SOLD OUT IN 15 MINUTES.
WHILE IT'S GOOD FOR BASEBALL THE REALITY IS THAT THE RED SOX GAVE UP UP HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE AGAINST THEIR NUMBER ON RIVAL.
LONDON STADIUM IS NOT FENWAY PARK.

I DON'T KNOW IF BASEBALL'S HOT DOGS AND BEER MATCHES WIMBLETON'S STRAWBERRIES AND CREAM BUT WE WILL SEE.
SO SUMMER IS OFFICIALLY HERE AND AND IT WILL GO FAST.
THE RED SOX SEEM POISED TO GET HOT AND MAKE A RUN.
SIX GAMES ABOVE 500 IS NOT A BAD PLACE TO BE.

BUT THIS TEAM HAS SOME HOLES THAT MAY OR MAY NOT BE PATCHED UP BY THE JULY 31ST TRADING DEADLINE.
NO SECRET THAT THE BULLPEN IS INCONSISTENT AND HAS HAD TROUBLE CLOSING THE DEAL IN TOO MANY GAMES.
THE TEAM HAS MISSED THEIR FIFTH STARTER NATHAN EVOLDI SINCE MID-APRIL AND HIS REPLACEMENTS HAVE STRUGGLED.
FANS ARE HOPING FOR A BIG FIX WITH A LEGITIMATE CLOSER.

I DON'T REALLY EXPECT IT IN THE SHORT TERM.
BASEBALL OPERATIONS PRESIDENT DAVE DROMBROSKI KNOWS ONE FACT OF BASEBALL LIFE.
IF A TOP NOTCH CLOSER BECOMES AVAILABLE BETWEEN NOW AND THE JULY 31 DEADLINE THE PRICE WILL BE HIGH.
STAYING PAT, AT LEAST IN THE SHORT TERM, MAY NOT BE THE WORST OPTION AVAILABLE TO HIM.

THIS IS GEORGE HALE WITH MY PERSPECTIVE ON SPORTS.