The standard big league roster is comprised of 25 men, but sometimes you'd swear Dave Dombrowski stopped at 19.
We've spent so much time complaining about the component parts — one night the bullpen, another the rotation, another the lack of clutch hitting, another a defensive miscue, a bunch more the bullpen again — that we haven't stopped to consider the incohesive whole.
Once you do, it becomes Dombrowski's time under the microscope.
The back of the roster is dysfunctional, and it eventually proved costly in Sunday night's finale vs. the Dodgers.
Earlier that day, the Red Sox placed knuckleballer Steven Wright on the injured list after he took a line drive off the foot and replaced him with Andrew Cashner, who was acquired on Saturday, won't pitch until Tuesday, and had 48 hours to report.
After using six relievers in Saturday's 11-2 beatdown, the Red Sox were an arm short on Sunday. A corresponding move seemed reasonable — either ship out a reliever like Marcus Walden or Hector Velazquez to bring up a fresh arm, or encourage Cashner to take the full 48 hours to report and use Wright's spot for a 24-hour reinforcement.
In either scenario, the Red Sox might've found themselves with some coverage in the 12th inning on Sunday. Instead, they had little choice but to hand the ball to Velazquez for a third straight day.