The season is only a week old, and already the Boston Red Sox have faced quite a bit of adversity.
It's hard enough to deal with whatever baseball-related injuries pop up each year, but Boston has also had to worry about the flu, which has been making its way through the roster over the past few days. Every game brings new questions about who manager John Farrell will be able to put on the field.
Hanley Ramirez missed the last three games, and Mookie Betts was also sick, missing three games before returning in Sunday's win at Detroit. Reliever Robbie Ross is on the disabled list because of the flu. Utilityman Brock Holt and reliever Joe Kelly have also been unavailable at times.
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"It's not like we could go home and quit. We've got games to play,'' second baseman Dustin Pedroia said, "We've got a job to do, and we'll try to do it as best we can.''
The Red Sox will attempt to salvage a split of a four-game series at Detroit when they send Chris Sale to the mound Monday against Justin Verlander. Boston will be without outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. in that game after he hurt his knee Saturday. It's not clear how much time he'll miss, but even after all their illnesses run their course, the Red Sox may not be at full strength for a while. David Price is still working his way back from a left elbow strain.
The defending AL East champions have persevered. The Red Sox beat the Tigers 7-5 on Sunday, with reliever Matt Barnes earning the win with two scoreless innings in his first game back from the bereavement list. Shortstop Xander Bogaerts has also been on the bereavement list.
Boston returns home for a six-game stand against Baltimore and Tampa Bay that starts Tuesday night.