One of the main reasons I love the Red Sox so much is because of our loyal fan base. So I got to thinking today about multiple Red Sox related things (As is the custom for my brain) and I wondered how you guys as a whole would answer various Red Sox questions. Below you will find the questions, with your answers, decided by a poll I ran on twitter. I love the feedback and input and the results were interesting, with some answers being split, while others we pretty much all agreed on. I will offer some insight along these answers.
1. Will Benny win the ROY
An astounding 90% said he would. This, I agree with. A benefactor of well played service time, Benny is in his second stint of experiencing major league pitching. And he has been stellar. The guy has amazing contact skills and a true eye for the ball. There was a Carl Yastrzemski photo posted after his home run on opening night that shows the two with almost identical photo finishes to their home run swings. It might be a long shot comparison at this point in his early career, but I see Benny not only being a great team guy, and the ROY this year, but a MVP in the long run. This question and answer was non controversial, and played out how I thought it would.
2. Will Price become what we paid for?
This question got a 60% no, as I think many are scared off by the huge contract and injury scares this year. If I had to vote, I would say no, but I would also clarify. I think Price has been less then stellar to start his career in Boston. I buy into the idea that Boston is the hardest place to play because of the pressure, but I also believe that one needs to be a professional, especially when they are making David Price Money. Price will need to step it up large to come anywhere close to what we expected, and I truly believe he will do that. But the first years of this contract make it not pan out in the long run. Again, I believe he will become a dominant force again. He’s been too good for too long not to be. I also don’t buy the Playoff Bust thing, as people say the same thing about Kershaw and I would take him over any pitcher in the league in a second. Playoffs are always a crap shoot.
3. Will Leon be traded?
75% said no. And I can see that. I don’t disagree, but I also think that Swihart is bound to be our number one, and that Leon is playing way above what his true level is right now. I could see Leon being moved to help with a weakness before the trade deadline, as if Swihart doesn’t work out, Vasquez is still a great option as he’s one of the best defensive players in the game.
4. Will Chris Young be traded?
This got a split 50/50 answer, and again I understand why. Someone felt that he wouldn’t be worth much, but I completely disagree. I could see him being moved for a bullpen piece, and thats exactly what he is worth. Lots of BP guys are had for less, and Young would come and contribute as a lefty smasher, and a clubhouse leader type guy.
5. Betts wins the MVP
60% said yes, but I believe it should be more. Realistically, he should of won it last year, and I see it as a slight that he didn’t. He will be motivated to come out this year and increase his production, and with Ortiz gone, he will be relied upon to do so. Also with Ortiz gone, the base paths should be opened up to our players, meaning more runner in scoring position for Betts, and more steals as well. I see him doing huge things, and If I was a betting man, would happily and confidently put cash on him to take it this year.
6. Moreland hits 20 plus homers
60% Yes to this one. I personally guarantee it. As part of my love for baseball, I also follow the other divisions very closely, and I think everyone severely underestimates what Moreland provides. I know he had a rough night on opening night, but this guy is a Gold Glove caliber player every year, and is no slouch with the bat. With the trend right now to bat against the shift, I could see it being used less and less as teams go back to traditional fielding, and that should open Moreland up to swing away. He will hit 20 plus, and you will value him at seasons end. Mark my words.
7. Standings predictions
86% believed we would be first in the AL East, Almost 70% believed first in the whole AL, and it was almost split for whether we would be first in baseball. I think the AL east is a lock, but the other two are much tougher to predict. FanGraphs.com has us finishing at 6th in the league, behind the Dodgers, Cubs, Indians, Astros and Nationals. For those keeping score thats 3 NL teams, and 2 Al teams. I see us finishing at least ahead of the Astros and Nationals, and could see us ahead of the Indians. The prediction is 90 wins right now, so that would take about 91-92 wins to do it, but i truly believe we are a better team then the Nationals and Astros, and can take the Indians in the playoffs if our big three pitchers perform like they should. This one will be interesting to check back on at seasons end, to say the least.
8. Will price be out for the year?
52% said yes he would. And its really a tough one. The brass has been playing his health card close to their chest, and I think that the reason so many believe he will be out is due to that secrecy. He has been steadily rehabbing though, as many writers are pointing out that his long toss continues to improve, and he even threw, albeit very lightly, off the mound in the last couple of days. we will have to see how this one plays out, but i truly believe he will be back sooner then we think.
9. Is Chris Sale going to Dominate?
90% said yes, and based on his first start, I think that number would be even higher now. The kid is unbelievable, and Ifully understand why he received the prospect haul that he did. A good friend once said that you have to remember that prospects are just prospects and they are not guaranteed (see Mike Olt), so i support Dave D’s move on this one. Sale is a dominator, and you “gotta do what you gotta do to do what you wanna do”, and for us, thats win the world series.
10. Eduardo Rodriguez. Will he become a permanent starter?
79% said yes to this one. But I think that theres a caveat. Someone needs to be traded, or (knock on wood) hurt. Theres no need for him to be here unless its to fill in for an injury or opened up trade spot. Obviously, he’s filling in right now, and thats okay. He will be our future guy, the question is when?
11. Will Farrell be fired before seasons end?
70% said…. no. And I agree. Not because I don’t think he SHOULD be fired, but rather because they won’t fire him. I think our team is obviously playoff bound, so see Farrell leaving in the offseason.
In closing, I think that most of these answers were pretty expected. The fun lied in the down the middle questions, and those make sense, as our roster has those what if questions. I throughly enjoyed this one, I’m not going to lie. Not only is it always fun interacting with everyone, but to have direct ebb and flow between you guys and the write up is a thing of beauty. I will definitely have to reflect on these questions as the season goes on, so keep an eye out for that! if you want to get in on the next round of voting, make sure to give a follow to our writers here!