Monday, March 27, 2017

2017 Boston Red Sox Preview

Mookie Betts
The BostonRed Sox won the American League East in 2016 but were quickly swept from the playoffs by the eventual A.L. Champions the Cleveland Indians 3-0.  Still their season was a success as 93 wins is good no matter how you look at it.  David Ortiz is no longer with the team but the team added stud pitcher Chris Sales, reliever Tyler Thornburg and 1B Mitch Moreland to help keep the team atop the A.L. East.  The big news in the infield is the return of Pablo Sandoval to 3B.  He missed most of the year with an injury last year and has been a disappointment overall in his time with Boston. He must look more like his old self to help this team and stay in the lineup.  Dustin Pedroia and Xander Bogaerts are the anchors up the middle.  Both come off great years with Bogaerts looking like a player the team can build around for many years to come.  At first will be new guy Mitch Moreland and Hanley Ramirez who had an excellent bounce back year.  Moreland brings a decent glove to first but his bat is the classic homerun or bust type of swing.  Sandy Leon will be behind the plate.    

In the outfield I think Andrew Benintendi will get the left field job with the expectation he has time
Xander Bogaerts
to grow.  He did well last year but he is young and bumps in the road are to be expected.  Jackie Bradley finally had the year expected of the highly touted center fielder.  In right will be Mookie Betts who had 200 hits and scored 100 runs which was matched by Dustin Pedroia.  His career continues to skew upwards.  Bottom line is the lineup lost a huge piece with David Ortiz retiring.  Boston must also hope most players can continue to play as well as they did last year in his absence.  Many young players had break out years or others had rebound seasons.  Can they continue that trend?  Doubtful they all will but there is so much talent here that the lineup should be fine in the long run.

Chris Sale
The pitching staff also has plenty of talent though David Price’s injury is concerning.  Though he may be slotted as low as third in the starting rotation he is still a guy you counted on for 200 innings of quality work.  Chris Sale, Rick Porcello, Steven Wright and Eduardo Rodriguez will anchor the rotation until Price’s return.  Sale of course was the big catch in the offseason and automatically gives you an ace to throw out there every five days.  Porcello is the AL Cy Young winner while Wright put up a 13 win, 3.33 ERA season last year.  They should both be dependable at the top of the rotation.  Rodriguez must have a better year (4.71 ERA) as he’ll get work as the #4 guy when the season starts.  The fifth position is still up in the air with Drew Pomeranz and Kyle Kendrick in the mix.  Very solid group but it is a long season and the back end could prove to be the weak link if pitchers don’t step up.  Bullpen was tweaked some with Tyler Thornburg brought in to be the setup guy for Craig Kimbrel who must fix the walk issue he struggled with last year.   

Why wouldn’t the Red Sox have a 90 win season and again take the A.L. East?  They can only beat themselves.  I’m not discounting the Blue Jays, the Orioles or that New York could be much better but this team has a ton of talent.  Much of it is young.  So will it get better or digress?  Probably a mix.  Again way too much talent for them to fail.  I expect 90 more wins and hopefully they can make a deep run in the playoffs. 
Dustin Pedroia




  1. Nice preview, I can't wait to see if your prediction pans out. Just a few more days!

    1. Yep. Just one more day. Can't wait to see the season start.