If there is a week that is going to determine how the Red Sox season ends, this one is probably it.
No, the season is not over after this week, but it will give fans a pretty good indicator of where this team will probably end up. You see, coming into a Monday off day, the Red Sox were five games back in the AL Wildcard standings with the Tampa Bay Rays, Cleveland Indians and Oakland Athletics being their main adversaries. The team also had 25 games left in the season, so the time to make up that ground was fading. The chances of them making the playoffs, on paper, look rather improbable.
But as we know, they got off to a slow start to the season (6-13) and have been a better team since, so it's not impossible.
However, the time for them to show they are a playoff team is sort of right now.
You see, the Red Sox are playing two first place teams this week at home: the Minnesota Twins of the AL Central and the behated New York Yankees of the AL East. If that's not a major test that will make or break a team's season, I really don't know what would qualify for that in your book.
The danger they run into here is that if they have a bad week, they lose ground and their path to a playoff spot gets muddied. Meanwhile, if they have a great week--which will be tough--maybe they gain a game or two in the standings. Then, they have an easier schedule later in the year which is nice.
So yeah, this is a good time to watch baseball. In real life, it's still the summer. Some might say it is the fall, but they are factually incorrect. Still baseball season.