Not even three weeks ago, I had to write a post apologizing to Alfedo Aceves, because I had predicted the worst from him. I'll happily apologize when players prove me wrong, and here we are again. Last night, when a large portion of Red Sox Nation was tuned into Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals, Aceves earned a win down in Tampa Bay.
The performance from the oft-maligned and sometimes volatile Aceves was much appreciated, as his six innings went further toward resting the bullpen than Lester's 4.2 the night before. Sure it would have been nice to see Aces go deeper into the game, but the battered bullpen managed to piece together the final three innings to get the win.
Aceves night was better than many he's had in recent starts (excepting the last time I had to apologize to him, when he was quite good), as he allowed just a single run (a solo homer) and scattered four hits and four walks in his six innings. WEEI is speculating that his newfound success has something to do with the fact that he's stopped shaking off signs from the catcher.
Whatever it is, Aces should keep doing it. He might need to make another appearance soon, if Clay Buchholz needs more time, or if we discover that Lester's struggles are caused by an underlying injury. Of course, I'd love nothing more than for the Red Sox rotation to stay completely healthy so Aceves won't be needed - but I'm not so naive to think that's a reasonable expectation.