At This Point in the Season, What Would You Consider a Success?

Philip Jeff Frye

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While its disappointing to be on the verge of up 3-1 and probably losing instead, its not surprising to me that we're where we are right now. This team has been one of the streakiest teams I can ever remember. They've looked great at times and totally inept at others. Unfortunately, the ineptness resurfaced at a bad time - weak at bats, fielding mistakes, shaky relief pitching, questionable moves from the manager, etc... I guess we've at least avoided some baseball running blunders in the last few games. I'm shocked that a team with so many obvious holes has gotten as far as it has and that it has given me a lot more fun than I expected back in March. I don't want to seem them go down meekly, but I'm pretty satisfied with a team that's gone this far.

That said, if they roll out the same pitching staff next year, I'm going to be pretty unhappy. They need a much better bench too. It's amazing that a team that had a shot at the World Series has so many players on the roster right not that you just don't want to see in the game under any circumstances.
 

Daniel_Son

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May 25, 2021
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While its disappointing to be on the verge of up 3-1 and probably losing instead, its not surprising to me that we're where we are right now. This team has been one of the streakiest teams I can ever remember. They've looked great at times and totally inept at others. Unfortunately, the ineptness resurfaced at a bad time - weak at bats, fielding mistakes, shaky relief pitching, questionable moves from the manager, etc... I guess we've at least avoided some baseball running blunders in the last few games. I'm shocked that a team with so many obvious holes has gotten as far as it has and that it has given me a lot more fun than I expected back in March. I don't want to seem them go down meekly, but I'm pretty satisfied with a team that's gone this far.

That said, if they roll out the same pitching staff next year, I'm going to be pretty unhappy. They need a much better bench too. It's amazing that a team that had a shot at the World Series has so many players on the roster right not that you just don't want to see in the game under any circumstances.
Who would you like to see them get for pitching? We've got Sale, Eovaldi, Pivetta. Erod can (and should) be brought back. You've got Seabold, Houck, and Whitlock in the wings. Bloom's not signing a 30+ year old to a massive contract. I guess they could let go of Erod in favor of someone else... but scanning the available free agents, I don't see a ton of names jumping out. Maybe they see if Syndergaard can come back strong at the right price? Jon Gray? Marcus Stroman? See if Mike Foltynewicz can get back to 2018?

I dunno. They could make a trade. But I think Bloom is rolling with the rotation as-is.
 

amRadio

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Feb 7, 2019
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Who would you like to see them get for pitching? We've got Sale, Eovaldi, Pivetta. Erod can (and should) be brought back. You've got Seabold, Houck, and Whitlock in the wings. Bloom's not signing a 30+ year old to a massive contract. I guess they could let go of Erod in favor of someone else... but scanning the available free agents, I don't see a ton of names jumping out. Maybe they see if Syndergaard can come back strong at the right price? Jon Gray? Marcus Stroman? See if Mike Foltynewicz can get back to 2018?

I dunno. They could make a trade. But I think Bloom is rolling with the rotation as-is.
The rotation is likely crowded, like you point out. There is a lot of quality and upside there. Agreed. How about the bullpen? I don't know what the plans will or should be this offseason, but you don't think that maybe - given the results this year - the Sox should be players for elite bullpen help? If it's out there, Chaim should bid on players that can shore up the 7th, 8th, and 9th. We should try to make a run. Especially if JD opts in.
 
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Sandy Leon Trotsky

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I figured they'd lose to Tampa in 5. When we beat them, I figured they'd lose to Houston in 5. I was originally just happy to see the team there... but living in Austin, I've had a pretty good barrage of shit-talkers (texters?) that went heavy before the series started and after winning game one. I NEVER once gave it back to them after games 2 or 3 (because of my honest confidence in this team is pretty low) and they just all went silent and then came back HEAVY after game 4. Not once acknowledging the bad call on Eovaldi and what transpired because of it.
So now.... fuck them. I'm not just happy to be there. I was nice to those shit-stains and they continued to be a bunch of shit-stains. So fuck that.... I want to win. And I'm going to throw that shit back at them.
 

54thMA

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The rotation is likely crowded, like you point out. There is a lot of quality and upside there. Agreed. How about the bullpen? I don't know what the plans will or should be this offseason, but you don't think that maybe - given the results this year - the Sox should be players for elite bullpen help? If it's out there, Chaim should bid on players that can shore up the 7th, 8th, and 9th. We should try to make a run. Especially if JD opts in.
The way the game is now managed, you're better off loading up bullpen arms vs starters if you're going to continually yank starters after 4 or 5 innings.

The innings pitched, strike outs and other such records for pitchers current leaders all appear to be safe for a long time.
 

grimshaw

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Still loving the ride, but this is also because it's going to be an AL East dogfight for the foreseeable future and they may not even make it this far again in the next few years, even with a better roster.

That's why I enjoy them while I can and take nothing for granted. Expectations will be higher from the fanbase next season.
 

amRadio

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Feb 7, 2019
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The way the game is now managed, you're better off loading up bullpen arms vs starters if you're going to continually yank starters after 4 or 5 innings.

The innings pitched, strike outs and other such records for pitchers current leaders all appear to be safe for a long time.
Yeah, I agree with you.

I am not 100% comfortable discussing the offseason given that I feel obligated to pull for the ring in the here and now. I ain't no jinx, ya know? I agree with you though and I think the offseason agenda is going to be a super interesting topic of discussion. Given the surprising turn of events this season and things seemingly being "ahead of schedule" as it were, this is going to be a fun offseason to speculate on.
 

DeadlySplitter

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The whole series turned on that Altuve home run, he's been swinging at the first pitch continually all series long, WHY give him anything to hit there, their approach in that at bat sucked.
The pitch call was 96mph inside to jam him or get ahead 0-1. It leaked over the middle.
 

54thMA

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Yeah, I agree with you.

I am not 100% comfortable discussing the offseason given that I feel obligated to pull for the ring in the here and now. I ain't no jinx, ya know? I agree with you though and I think the offseason agenda is going to be a super interesting topic of discussion. Given the surprising turn of events this season and things seemingly being "ahead of schedule" as it were, this is going to be a fun offseason to speculate on.
Understood.

And yes, the game has changed, so adapt to the changes, much like Belichick and his drafting of slow, plodding linebackers designed to stuff the run when it's a pass happy league and you need linebackers who can cover RB's and TE's, the Bentley's of the world are dinosaurs in the NFL in 2021.

Dropping a shit ton of money on one starter is not going to solve your problems, spread that money around on live bullpen arms.
 

54thMA

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I figured they'd lose to Tampa in 5. When we beat them, I figured they'd lose to Houston in 5. I was originally just happy to see the team there... but living in Austin, I've had a pretty good barrage of shit-talkers (texters?) that went heavy before the series started and after winning game one. I NEVER once gave it back to them after games 2 or 3 (because of my honest confidence in this team is pretty low) and they just all went silent and then came back HEAVY after game 4. Not once acknowledging the bad call on Eovaldi and what transpired because of it.
So now.... fuck them. I'm not just happy to be there. I was nice to those shit-stains and they continued to be a bunch of shit-stains. So fuck that.... I want to win. And I'm going to throw that shit back at them.
I've got a customer from TX who's a band wagon Astors fan, been on the bandwagon for 5 years, he constantly talks shit about the Patriots and how they've cheated all these years, sends me articles about Deflategate, Spygate, the book about the inner workings of the dynasty, on and on, I've never once taken his cheese.

He talked smack after the first game, then nothing for two games, now he's back to talking smack.

Again; I've said nothing.

Go down there and beat those jackasses on come from behind top of the ninth inning nutpunch losses back to back in games 6 and 7 so I can unleash Hell on him.
 

Daniel_Son

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May 25, 2021
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The rotation is likely crowded, like you point out. There is a lot of quality and upside there. Agreed. How about the bullpen? I don't know what the plans will or should be this offseason, but you don't think that maybe - given the results this year - the Sox should be players for elite bullpen help? If it's out there, Chaim should bid on players that can shore up the 7th, 8th, and 9th. We should try to make a run. Especially if JD opts in.
There are some interesting names here. In no particular order, I'd like to see them take a shot at Iglesias, Loup, Alvarez, Boxberger, Chafin, Chisek, Graveman, Knebel, McHugh, Nelson, (resigning) Ottavino, Watson, and Teperra.

However, relievers are so volatile, I'd really hesitate to give out a contract to an "elite" relief arm. But this is the area where I think Bloom excels - finding upside and quality where other teams aren't looking (Renfroe, Herandez, Pivetta, Schwarber). It's the same reason I'm not worried about the bench - Bloom will find the right guys, and we'll all be scratching our heads wondering why he didn't sign someone else. After this year's trade deadline, where nearly everyone (myself included) was angry as hell that he didn't get Rizzo, I've learned to stop questioning him. He's bought himself a lot of leeway with this year's team.
 

Wallball Tingle

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As has been said, they keep putting themselves in a really tough position and squeaking out of it. Nice ride. Stinks it might end tomorrow. If it does, I'm sure a couple hours after the loss, I'll be ready to look on this season as the success it was.

But fuck those couple of hours, I don't want to live 'em. Let's see some fucking offense tomorrow, Sox!
 

GB5

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Aug 26, 2013
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not sure this is the correct spot for this, but interesting article in the Athletic today, by Evan Drelich. Discusses this season, Chaims quest to find "Surplus Value" The Tampa way, quoted from inside and outside the Red Sox organization and a quick hit on Mookie-Long term contracts from the RS point of view.

Snippets:

Sounds like Dombo may have been the one pushing hard for the Sale contract, as well as one for himself. It's hinted at that not everyone was on board with the Sale extension. RS ownership talked to other members of the baseball staff...and Dombo was fired late at night.

Bloom said he was watching from Tampa as other clubs in the division passed Boston both at the time and long term, and when he got here, he needed to address long term issues. A lot of the Tampa model is based upon " Surplus Value". A trade may be not look great in the immediate term, but they focus on extracting future years value. Grabbing an extra year option or extra year of control is what they are looking for.

Sox barely got anyhting out of 2020 wire waiver pickups. Generally those are low risk, low reward moves, but Sox struck out. Article said that both Tampa and Sox can see value in a player, but for whatever reason Tampa is better equipped to extract that value.

Had over 50 calls between him and dodgers on Mookie trade. Could sense through multiple calls the Dodgers ownership was putting pressure on front office to improve team. Suggestion was it was this pressure that allowed Bloom to get Dodgers to take Price.

Regarding Betts and sox with long term contracts. Said Sox last offer was 290 mill, Betts countered slightly over 400mill. Sox knew Mookie would not take 290, but seemed to expect to meet somewhere in middle. Question was asked ultimately, how do the RS feel about this type of long term contract, because as the article suggests if you are going to give out one of these, Mookie seemed like the right guy to get it.

"Ownership's answer, according to a source, was that it did not think it should give out these type of deals"....

Can anyting be read into this in terms of future dealings with X and Raffi?
 

cantor44

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Still loving the ride, but this is also because it's going to be an AL East dogfight for the foreseeable future and they may not even make it this far again in the next few years, even with a better roster.

That's why I enjoy them while I can and take nothing for granted. Expectations will be higher from the fanbase next season.
I agree with this. And after the 2022 season we'll see a potential massive roster turnover, with a lot key FAs and guys with opt outs. Next year's team, I suspect, will be largely the same, but with an improved bullpen. 2023 promises a bigger turnover, and maybe a step back to take two forward ....With AL East so stacked, the road ahead might be tough. That's why I was hoping for a touch more GFIN at the deadline, and doing superstitious rituals now ....
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Even next years team could be quite a bit different. JD, Schwarber, EdRo, Ottavino, Robles are potential FA’s. With bullpens so important, it seems like the Sox are likely to have Barnes, Taylor, and who knows what else. I guess a lot of it comes down to what JD decides and what they want to do with Whitlock and Houck.

Fun to think about, but would be nice to table the discussion for a few more weeks.
 

soxhop411

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I agree with this. And after the 2022 season we'll see a potential massive roster turnover, with a lot key FAs and guys with opt outs. Next year's team, I suspect, will be largely the same, but with an improved bullpen. 2023 promises a bigger turnover, and maybe a step back to take two forward ....With AL East so stacked, the road ahead might be tough. That's why I was hoping for a touch more GFIN at the deadline, and doing superstitious rituals now ....
Even next years team could be quite a bit different. JD, Schwarber, EdRo, Ottavino, Robles are potential FA’s. With bullpens so important, it seems like the Sox are likely to have Barnes, Taylor, and who knows what else. I guess a lot of it comes down to what JD decides and what they want to do with Whitlock and Houck.

Fun to think about, but would be nice to table the discussion for a few more weeks.
we all really think its a guarantee we even have a season next year? I am still of the belief that the CBA negotiations are going to get really messy
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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I’d like to think that neither side is stupid enough to force a work stoppage now…but I’ve thought before and it’s happened. Baseball seems to be in a pretty good spot, I feel like people are not interested than they’ve been in years and the sport is suddenly filled with exciting young stars. Hope both sides realize that and don’t eff it up.
 

wiffleballhero

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In the simulacrum
Wait, which thread is this?

Two weeks ago, beating the Yankees was enough.

Two weeks from now, that, again will probably have been enough.

But for the next two days it is not enough. Not at all. Start hitting again please!
 

joe dokes

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It's hard to describe "what's enough." But I know that when I turned off game 5 at 6-1, it didn't feel any worse than a regular season game. I guess that means that success has been achieved. (For me. If any players feel that way, they can fuck right off.)
 

mauf

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Dropping a shit ton of money on one starter is not going to solve your problems, spread that money around on live bullpen arms.
With the possible exception of the Dodgers, teams don’t have the luxury of building for October. You need to build a team that gets you to the postseason. That means having at least four guys who can eat innings. There aren’t nearly enough guys who do that reasonably well to go around. So starters are still going to get paid handsomely, and unless your farm system can consistently churn out quality starters, you’re going to need to play in that market.

That said, the days of committing 15% of your payroll to a guy who plays every 5th day in hopes he will be the difference-maker in October are over. Gerrit Cole’s record contract may hold that distinction for quite some time. But second-tier guys like Marcus Stroman are still going to get paid, and rightly so — you can’t allocate those same resources to two or three bullpen arms and expect the April-to-September results to be good.
 

Apisith

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It's hard to describe "what's enough." But I know that when I turned off game 5 at 6-1, it didn't feel any worse than a regular season game. I guess that means that success has been achieved. (For me. If any players feel that way, they can fuck right off.)
I’m here. 2018 still feels so fresh for me. Yes, when the game is tight, I feel tense and excitement. But it’s not really do or die. Maybe in a few years it’ll feel like that again, like 2013 did.
 

Papo The Snow Tiger

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It's really easy to get caught up in the heat of the moment. It's especially easy to let your emotions get the best of you when umpire incompetence is a key factor in a loss of a close game to a despicable team like the Astors. But I agree that two weeks from now the making the playoffs, beating the MFY, then adding the defeat of the Rays will have been enough for most of us to consider this season a success.
 

sodenj5

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I thought making the playoffs was a success. Beating the Yankees and Rays is a massive feather in the cap for both Chaim and AC.

Anyone saying that it would be a disappointment losing to the Astros is speaking out of emotion because Boston was close to going up 3-1 in the ALCS and on the doorstep of the World Series.

This team overachieved, then looked like they might miss the playoffs, then got red hot at the right time to go on a run in the playoffs.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I thought making the playoffs was a success. Beating the Yankees and Rays is a massive feather in the cap for both Chaim and AC.

Anyone saying that it would be a disappointment losing to the Astros is speaking out of emotion because Boston was close to going up 3-1 in the ALCS and on the doorstep of the World Series.

This team overachieved, then looked like they might miss the playoffs, then got red hot at the right time to go on a run in the playoffs.
This is well said. Honestly, as much as I'd have liked to see the Sox win Game 4 (and Game 5), if they're ultimately going to lose the series, I'm okay with it going as it's gone rather than the alternatives (a sweep or losing 3 or 4 straight elimination games). That said, if they win tonight and tomorrow, I'm not going to be upset about it.
 

Monbonthbump

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I think most of us agree that we've been living on gravy since beating the Yankees. Beating the Rays and pummeling the Astros twice just made me greedy for more. Now I want to win the next two, but if we don't, I will move on to hoping the Nebraska basketball team can finally find an NCAA tourney win (I've already given up on the football team). After all, too much gravy is not good for the system, as I have to re-discover each Thanksgiving.
 

BaseballJones

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- Did the team give us exciting baseball action all season? Yes. Check.
- Did the team improve over last year? Yes. Check.
- Did the team improve its future prospects by developing the farm system? Yes. Check.
- Did the team operate within financial parameters allowing it to be more competitive in the future? Yes. Check.
- Did Chris Sale come back and give indication that he can be CHRIS SALE again? Maybe the jury is still out on this but I think he has. Check.
- Did the team make the playoffs? Yes. Check.
- How did the team do in the playoffs?
- They knocked out the Yankees. Major check.
- They knocked out Tampa in the divisional round. Major check.
- They have taken the Astros to a minimum of six games.

I mean, this team has checked virtually every possible box that would make it a "successful" season. They have gotten to game 6 of the ALCS without mortgaging the future. And in fact, their future is very bright given the young talent they added to the organization.

The cherry on top would be somehow winning the ALCS and getting to (and maybe winning) the World Series. But there's not a sane person in Red Sox Nation would wouldn't consider this year a wild raging success already.
 

steeplechase3k

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I'd say it's a it was a frustrating end to a successful season.

The last 3 games were painful/frustrating, because about 80% of the time I thought there was still a chance the Red Sox could still come back and win, but they could never string together the atbats to do it.

They also got much further than I expected them to several months ago.

And, as others have said, any season the Red Sox end the Yankees season can't be a total failure.
 

gattman

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Jul 15, 2005
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- Did the team give us exciting baseball action all season? Yes. Check.
- Did the team improve over last year? Yes. Check.
- Did the team improve its future prospects by developing the farm system? Yes. Check.
- Did the team operate within financial parameters allowing it to be more competitive in the future? Yes. Check.
- Did Chris Sale come back and give indication that he can be CHRIS SALE again? Maybe the jury is still out on this but I think he has. Check.
- Did the team make the playoffs? Yes. Check.
- How did the team do in the playoffs?
- They knocked out the Yankees. Major check.
- They knocked out Tampa in the divisional round. Major check.
- They have taken the Astros to a minimum of six games.

I mean, this team has checked virtually every possible box that would make it a "successful" season. They have gotten to game 6 of the ALCS without mortgaging the future. And in fact, their future is very bright given the young talent they added to the organization.

The cherry on top would be somehow winning the ALCS and getting to (and maybe winning) the World Series. But there's not a sane person in Red Sox Nation would wouldn't consider this year a wild raging success already.
This. Back in April my mom came down to visit (she lives in Mass & I’m in DC). It was during the Orioles series at the beginning of the year. Over the years she has become a Sox fan. And when my dad died several years ago, she really picked up his mantle as family Sox standard bearer.

So at the end of the series she said, guess it’s not their year. And my 8 year old kid (full of foolish youthful optimism) said, hey, maybe this year they’ll make the playoffs. We all laughed and humored him . . . Fast forward six months. My mom comes down to visit last week. We’re watching game 4 against Tampa. My kid turns to my mom, smiles slyly and says, “I TOLD you they’d make the playoffs,”. God I love baseball :)
 

Salem's Lot

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In April, I was hoping that they would play meaningful games in August. The fact that they made it to game 6 of the ALCS is a massive overachievement. Anyone that thinks this isn’t a success because they were up 2-1 in the series at some point is kidding themselves, they lost to a much better team.
 

canyoubelieveit

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Sometimes I have to remember to not only be grateful for things that happen, but for things that don't. Once the Sox beat the Yankees in the WC game I said that I'd be happy no matter what. But I realized earlier today, that had the Red Sox become the second team to blow a 3-0 lead in an ALCS, that would have ruined it for me. And the more I think about it, this Red Sox team vs this Astros team is very much the type of combo that could have resulted in that happening (unlikely as it would be under any circumstance). So I'm immensely grateful that didn't happen.

After a lost year to COVID and a hundred other things, I enjoyed this baseball season in some ways more than any other in my lifetime. I really savored it, and while I was invested, I was never doing the type of unhealthy emotional gambling I used to do pre-2004. All I wanted was for every game to matter until the end of the regular season, and I'm thrilled with what we got.

Go Braves (even though the Tomahawk Chop is disgraceful).
 
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moonshotmanny

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I find myself a little sad this morning, but I do anyway when we lose! No more Red Sox baseball till next year. That said, I am very satisfied with how the season went. When we got by the Yankees I was happy, when we got by the Rays I was even happier, but I felt the inevitable was coming. Pretty much felt we were not getting by Houston. What I wanted out of this ALCS was for them to put up a good fight, not get swept, get at least to game 6 so the Astros would NOT clinch at Fenway. I did not want them dancing on our lawn. So I got all that as well as our two wins being fun blowouts. Also as someone upthread said, if we had gone up 3-0 or even 3-1 and then lost it all it would have been tough to take.