2007 Team Analysis of the AL East: Boston Red Sox

AL East: Boston Red Sox

C Jason Varitek : Rock solid defensively except for a weak arm. OK bat with pop. Great tactician!

1B Kevin Youkilis : Great first half, average second, but great glove work throughout 2007!

2B Dustin Pedroia : Rookie of the Year, 4th in OBP, 3rd in BA, 2nd in doubles & runs and with the 3rd best VORP on the team. The only Red Sox position player to have a single digit SO% (7%). Better than average glove work up the middle!

3B Mike Lowell : Career year! Led the team in RBIs and had a career high BA. Great D, too!

SS Julio Lugo : worked his BA up to .237 & his OBP was under .300; both were major disappointments, but he did lead the team with 33 SBs.

DH David Ortiz : Led the team in BA/OBP/SLG/R/2B/ISO/BB/VORP

LF Manny Ramirez : stats affected by injury. Did not hit more than 20 HRs, hit under 90 RBIs and his SLG was under .500

CF Coco Crisp : Trade bait, Jacoby Ellsbury, if not traded for Johan Santana, plays CF in 2008!

RF J.D. Drew : another major disappointment! Managed to bring his BA up to .270

SP Josh Beckett : Should have won the Cy Young award & was lights out in October!

SP Tim Wakefield : 17 Wins in 2007, but will his back allow him to pitch effectively in 2008?

SP Daisuke Matsuzaka : 15 Wins in his 1st year in the USA is not bad, but he needs to be more consistent in 2008 for the money they aid for him. Expect 16-20 wins with an ERA under 4 in 2008.

SP Curt Schilling : Like Manny, his numbers were affected by injury. A winning record but not even 10 wins. He can no longer rely on blowing batters away with his fastball, he has now become a pitcher. 2008 will show how important and invaluable all his research really is as he will have to rely on it a lot in his final season!

SP Julian Tavarez/Kason Gabbard/Jon Lester/Clay Buchholz : Gabbard was traded so he’s out! This spot will be split between Jon Lester/Clay Buchholz is they don’t get Santana. Tavarez is destined to go back to the bullpen due t the work of the younger pitcher Lester & Buchholz.

RP Mike Timlin : Like Schilling, just without the massive statistical library on batters. Timlin, if used well, should be good for one more year and will be more valuable as a veteran presence with the pitching staff along with Schilling & Wakefield.

RP Kyle Snyder : Every team needs a mop up guy & Snyder is better than average at this job. He will spell Wakefield when the knuckler is flat or the young guns at times.

RP Manny Delcarmen : 2007 might just have been Delcarmen’s breakout year or it could be a sign of more things to come. He should be the long term solution to Timlin retiring after this year.

RP Javier Lopez : He led the Red Sox by allowing the most inherited runners to score. He couldn’t even get lefties out on a regular basis. He should not be on the team in 2008

RP Joel Pineiro/J.C. Romero/Brendan Donnelly : Pinero was serviceable while with the Sox, but was never going o be a good choice as Boston’s closer. Romero held his own also & both men were eventually released to make room for another player. Donnelly was doing what they brought him to Boston to do up until he went on the DL. Even Donnelly won’t be back in 2008, leaving a hole in the bullpen. Tavarez will fill this gap.

Set-up Hideki Okajima : He was better than just Okie dokie, he was awesome up until he tired, but was awesome again in time for the playoffs. Look for more of the same in 2008.

Closer Jonathan Papelbon : Can you say AL Closer of the year? It would be tough to argue against this one, but I bet it can be done! He’s another throw back free spirit which suits the role of a closer almost perfectly. He’s so crazy you almost have to like him, or else hate him. Moving him back to the closer’s role was arguably one of the best off season moves they made last year.

Down on the Farm:

Barring a trade with the Twins, the minor league Red Sox players to watch out for are:

OF Jacoby Ellsbury :  Should be the leadoff hitter and playing CF. He’ll have a decent OBP and 20-30 stolen bases

RPCraig Hanson : In 2007 he started to show signs of regaining his confidence as well as the bite on some of his key pitches. Don’t be shocked to see him back up after the trading deadline.

OFBrandon Moss : Moss might see time with the big club if anyone goes down or if they don’t sign a 4th outfielder for 2008.

1BChris Carter : Could see some time if there are any injuries to Youkilis in 2008.

SPDevern Hansack/ RPJustin Masterson : both could see action in 2008 if injuries occur, but Hansack will get the call first & Masterson is looked upon strictly as a reliever.


They won the World Series in 2007 and have lost only minor bullpen arms and not much more, but they could easily upgrade over Javier Lopez. If Lugo starts off like he did in 2007, you may see they try to move him by the deadline and make another move to replace him. Not much else needed really. They grow their own crop in Boston these days. Crisp will be dealt before they opening Japan if he or Ellsbury are not part of a Santana deal.

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