This is bad.
Let's take a minute to realize what's going on here:
#1. The Cubs are terrible, the NL Central is a joke, and the PIRATES are in first place. Ergo, there will be no more Cubs discussion this year. Expect Fukudome to be traded along with Marlon Byrd and whatever else can get jettisoned.
#2. The AL Central is a crapshoot. Despite a hot start, the Indians have given way to the Tigers (1.5 game lead), who are only 4 games ahead of the Sox and 6 games ahead of the Twins. This is really anybody's game except for the Royals, who haven't been a factor in 20 years.
#3. The Sox have yet to get above .500.
So really, we have a lot of work to do before we can start talking about how the Sox are still "in it."
The major problems we have had are that money is being invested in abysmal performances. Dunn, Rios, and Teahen were all supposed to be worth their paychecks. Dunn was projected to hit over 40 HRs, Rios to have a .270 BA, and Teahen to bring some lumber. How's that working out for us? Oh yeah - it's pretty bad.
The other thing is that we're pretty stacked with these bad performances. It's one thing when you've got bad players making big money, it's another when they're blocking good youth from playing. Currently, everyone is stroking themselves numb about Viciedo and De Aza and we frankly have no room to bring them up. We have Brent Morel splitting time with Teahen, and Lillibridge fighting Quentin for playing time.
And we can't trade anyone.
Oh yes, we have holes to fill. We need a better CF. We need a better catcher (I like AJ, but come on). We need a better RF, and we can put whatever's left at DH. But let's face it, Dunn and Rios cannot be moved. Even if you bench them for the rest of the season, you need to trade pieces to make room for them.
The only possible pieces I can see the Sox moving are Quentin and Edwin Jackson. Jackson became expendable when Humber came to life (at a fraction of the cost), and Quentin seems to have peaked. I mean, yeah, the guy can carry you when he's hot, but when was the last time that happened? Quentin should be filling the role of DH or LF on a team, not RF.
Let's do a hypothetical here. Let's say that the Braves make a move for Quentin, and the Sox get some prospects. Viciedo gets the call up, plays RF. Is that actually better than Quentin starting there?