John Lackey in Cowboy Hat

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: the 2014 Red Sox show sudden signs of life, win a series I’d all but written off as a lost cause, and get me superfuckingpumped for what is to come. Then, next game out, they fall flat on their collective ass, looking incapable of giving back correct change at the beer stand let alone drive a couple men across the plate.

It’s a frustrating cycle of inconsistency that has dogged this team since April 1, and they just can’t seem to shake it. After taking two of three in the Bronx, I figgered a homestand against the hapless Cubs would be a cakewalk. And easy way to leap forward in the very winnable AL East.

But, man, did hey fool me. Two hits. Two measly effin’ hits. And those two hits came from the most unlikely sources — AJ Pierzynski, whose 2014 highlight reel will just be stock footage of a horse taking a crap, and Stephen Drew. Never mind that they were nearly no-hit by the invincible Jake Arrieta.

This is a team that can’t hit and that lack of offense is wasting some pretty good pitching. Even the seemingly hapless Jake Peavy positioned them to win last night, giving up just two runs. But you’ve got to throw a shutout damn near every night to keep this offense in the game.

It’s bad because it’s dirtying up my memories of 2013. I don’t want to hear the Fenway crowds booing Drew or Gomes or anyone who helped turn last season into a joyapalooza. I don’t want my last memory of the Pevs to be a quick shuttle out of town on the wings of a winless summer. I don’t want to see Bogaerts’ and Betts’ and Brock’s first full seasons in the bigs marred by a record worse than the 2012 team’s.

Still, if a shit year is the price we have to pay for last year’s magic, I’ll take it. We’d all take it. But it doesn’t cushion the blow. This team always seems to be on the verge of some majestic breakout… I’m just hoping it comes in time for a respectable summer run.

Oh and here’s your only highlight from last night: