How do you feel now about this team, as opposed to earlier in the off-season?

How has your feelings about the team changed in the last couple months?

  • Feel much better about their chances

  • Feel a bit better about their chances

  • Feel about the same regarding their chances

  • Feel a bit more pessimistic about their chances

  • Feel much more pessimistic about their chances


Results are only viewable after voting.

Lose Remerswaal

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So much negativity in these threads in November and December, and not without reason, based on the few moved the team made. Lately it feels like the mood has swung to at least slightly positive.

what say you? Are you feeling better, worse, or about the same as you did 60 days ago or so?
 

geoflin

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I voted about the same. Offense has likely improved with recent moves but it usually comes down to pitching and defense which both remain big question marks. But I do think the team will be more interesting than I thought a month or so ago.
 

Granite Sox

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Feb 6, 2003
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Worse.

Up the middle 2022: Vazquez-Bogaerts-Story-Kiké
Up the middle 2023: McGuire-Kiké (with little experience)-Arroyo (made of glass)-Duvall (with little experience)

OF defense pretty suss.

No starters that can be counted on for innings except Pivetta.

Bullpen’s better.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Jan 13, 2021
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I think there is always a sense of hope as the days get longer and we get closer to playing ball. If a bunch of things break the right way, this team could be pretty good. You kind of always need that to happen, right? Some of the most enjoyable seasons have been when expectations are relatively low. Granted, some of the least enjoyable ones too.

Hopefully they are competitive and playing meaningful baseball until football season starts. With the expanded playoffs, that seems doable. Is that too much to ask?
 

SouthernBoSox

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Jul 23, 2005
12,126
I think it’s an incredibly exciting time. My thoughts stem almost entirely from the long term extension of Devers.

Frankly, I do not feel it’s been appreciated in both it being reasonable in time and money, but also structured in a way that allowed them to reset the tax while not being hampered in adding to the team.

So you have Devers locked in to build around. Story is very much still a good player. Then you add Yoshida, Casas and Bello with a more proven but still intriguing Whitlock and Houck - there is a potential 4 position player / 3 pitcher Core that could blossom. Add into that a potential generational CF defender in AAA and there is very much alot to look forward too.

There could be major disappointment. These players might not be what we think….

But….

Devers is a superstar. And Bello, Casas, Yoshida, and Whitlock could all become that. I’m very bullish on the next few years given those chances plus the incredible payroll position Chaim has put them in.

I think the front office has done a fantastic job of supplementing this young core. Turner and Duvall are great add’s. The bullpen looks extremely balanced. Kluber is obviously a pro. Mondesi is a complete wild card but clearly a buy low guy with a floor supported by defense.

But at the end of the day, for me, it comes down to those 7 multi year players listed above.
 
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JM3

often quoted
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Dec 14, 2019
17,435
Moderately optimistic about this season's team & very optimistic regarding how things will look by '25, same as a few months ago.
 

YTF

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I didn't participate in the poll as I was a bit unclear about what "their chances" meant. Chances to be better than last year, playoff chances, World Series chances, etc... I'm looking forward to the season. I look forward to seeing what Yoshida will do. I want to see Casas and Bello progress and better health for Houck and Whitlock. I want to see how Sale, Paxton and Kluber might contribute. I'm looking forward to an improved bullpen. I have hope for a better team this year. Hopefully better in the win column, but mostly a team that plays better mental and physical baseball on the whole.
 

SinkingLowe

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I voted for same. I don't have much hope for a better than .500 season.

Offense likely to be about the same as last year. Production from 1B should be better, provided Dalbec doesn't ever play again. Production from SS will be lower. I expect the outfield production to improve. DH will probably be the same level of production, again with the caveat that Dalbec doesn't get any at bats.

They still haven't done anything that inspires confidence that the starting pitching staff will be any better than last year. don't have confidence that anyone in the starting rotation will be dependable to go more than 5 on a consistent basis. Anything more than 10 quality starts from Sale will be a minor miracle. At this point it has been three years since he pitched a full season. That's a long layoff even if it was due to injury. The bullpen should be marginally better, but there's a strong possibility for a lot of overworked bullpen arms by mid-July.
 

grimshaw

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I apparently misjudged the length of the bridge because there really is no other way for me to look at 2023 They have added a whole lot of age on a whole lot of short money aside from one guy.

To me this 2023 offseason is all about Yoshida. Every projection system (Fangraphs, ZIPS, Steamer, THE Bat, ATC etc.) have him as a very good to elite bat -something along the average lines of .300/.370/.460 wRC+ 130.

If he's that good, the old guys do their modest projection thing, and Bello/Casas hold their own, then I think they can do 85 wins. I'm much more confident in the latter unfortunately and think they'll fall short overall - around 82 wins.

Edit: Adding one more thought. I think something they can start to do now is make more impactful deadline moves for rentals with some of the depth they are accumulating. If they are a couple games out of a spot, I'm hoping they are more aggressive.
 
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simplicio

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Apr 11, 2012
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I was feeling optimistic then; I'm very excited for Yoshida and full seasons of Casas and Bello.

In the interim, I think they've made the team better with further moves, but losing Story for significant time does hurt, so I voted the same.
 

Rich Garces Belly

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I made my first legal bet for the Red Sox to win the World Series and I look forward to cashing in that +8000 bet in late October or early November.
 

Salem's Lot

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Jul 15, 2005
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Same. I thought they were the worst team in the division before the off-season, and I still think they are. I’m happy that they signed Devers long term, and I’m excited about seeing Bello and some of the other prospects, but I’m not expecting them to be too competitive in the AL East. I’m going in knowing this year is about letting the prospects develop, and that’s ok. Every franchise needs to rebuild eventually.
 

Bob Montgomerys Helmet Hat

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I was feeling optimistic then; I'm very excited for Yoshida and full seasons of Casas and Bello.

In the interim, I think they've made the team better with further moves, but losing Story for significant time does hurt, so I voted the same.
I'm pretty much the same, but I'm going to remain optimistic that Story--who I'm a huge fan of--is back after the ASB as a great "trade deadline acquisition"
 

nvalvo

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Moderately optimistic about this season's team & very optimistic regarding how things will look by '25, same as a few months ago.
Co-signed. The window is opening.

We have an interesting if flawed big league roster. We have no long term commitments to anyone other than Devers, Story and Yoshida, but we have years of control for other potential core pieces. We have young pitching already in the rotation, top prospects in the high minors, and more good prospects behind them.

The old guys, Sale, Paxton and Kluber, could be the difference between this being a promising but ultimately middling team and being sneaky good. Still, it’s hard to see them better than third in the East without some real collapses elsewhere.

I expected a slightly different path through the off-season, but we’re about where I expected we’d be. By this time next year, the farm should have a lot to contribute to the big club, and the last underwater contract (Sale’s) will be short enough that it would likely be positively valued if he finishes the year healthy.
 

JM3

often quoted
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Dec 14, 2019
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Things on SOSH that have been referred to as "the Island of Misfit Toys" since November:

Nets
Red Sox
Raptors
Red Sox
Celtics
Red Sox
Red Sox
 

Trlicek's Whip

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It was mentioned in one of these threads, but I'm optimistic because this team feels like a logical roster in aiming for a competitive, year-in, year-out rebuild without ever having a total yard sale or completely detonating the team, resorting to running out a roster of what looks like replacement players or AAAA guys. And these competitive bridge seasons are largely taking place when Cora looked to be finished as a manager anywhere, and during Covid-19. So not under the ideal circumstances for player development, or the market, or the health of MLB in general.

I think of past iterations of terrible teams in the lowest parts of their cycles and being intentionally barren of talent or fan interest based on forcing a factory reset. Some of those teams for a long time pre-Theo were Sox teams. Or 80's/early 90's NYY teams. Or what the A's and O's generally have looked like.

It's hard to be competitive while keeping and growing assets for a longer, sustained success.

I also think the double tap of what the Sox have looked like and what the Pats have looked like the past 2-3 years - fair to middling, fool's gold - is the first bucket of cold water a lot of us as fans can remember being dowsed with in quite some time. So this winter's discontent was a strange new feeling to a lot of the fanbase.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

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Not optimistic. A pitching staff with a lot of age and injury risk. A defense that's likely to be bad. An offense that features a lot of low OBP players.

While there are some interesting young players to watch, there are also several old players who are not likely to be interesting and who will be gone next year either way.

I'd expect the team to be about the same as last year, within a range of plus/minus 5 games depending on health and luck. There have been a lot of moves this off-season since the winter meetings, but in my opinion very little forward movement.
 

Seels

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struggle to see how this team wins even as many games as they won last year unless their pitching plays at the 95% percentile. Agree with Mike Ford - 75 wins tops.
 

grimshaw

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May 16, 2007
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Portland
Not optimistic. A pitching staff with a lot of age and injury risk. A defense that's likely to be bad. An offense that features a lot of low OBP players.
I'm fine with most of your post, but the obp thing just isn't accurate.

Here are rough Steamer projections for OBP by position in all of MLB.

Yoshida (1st overall in LF)
Verdugo (4th in RF)
Devers (4th at 3b)
Casas (4th at 1b)
Turner (6th at DH)
Arroyo (20th at 2b Story could be a little worse but it's half a season).
Kike would be 18th ish in CF, but bottom 3rd in SS.
Refsnyder is 5th in RF as a platoon guy).
They are very weak at catcher and with Duvall in CF. They can at least do matchups up the middle without an everyday guy.

They were 6th last season with a .321 OBP and projected at .327 this season per Fangraphs- 3rd in the AL, a point behind Toronto and with the Astros at .333

Edit: Fixed some inaccuracies.
 
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soxhop411

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Dec 4, 2009
47,106
struggle to see how this team wins even as many games as they won last year unless their pitching plays at the 95% percentile. Agree with Mike Ford - 75 wins tops.
Uh. The team last year had a rotation consisting of AAA fill in for weeks at a time due to injuries
 

streeter88

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Apr 2, 2006
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I do not think they have solved the IF at all. While they signed Devers, he had to stay anyway this year, that’s a long-term improvement, but no impact on 2023. Sox still don’t have a proper answer for 2B/SS. Kike might be a bandaid, but weakened the OF to do it. Bullpen is better, but that was addressed right at start of offseason. SP relies on 2 former aces - and I’ve already said enough about how uncertain I think that is. Appreciate that Bloom has tried to get established veterans to come join us in Boston, and everybody gives a polite answer why not, but result is no substantial additions since the first poll. That should tell us all something, and unfortunately it’s too late now.

A push vs 2022, maybe slight uptick to 82 wins if things go well, but we will still finish 4th or 5th.

Edit: @Granite Sox said the same as me -- earlier, and with 70% less words.
 
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Sin Duda

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I'm optimistic (but I always am until the facts prove different). I think the catching tandem will be league average. Casas will be top 10 1B MLB in OPS. Kike will surprise as the early SS, both hitting and fielding. Mondesi will contribute offensively and play quality SS once he's healthy. 2B will be okay with Arroyo (not average but not an embarrassment) until Story comes back after the ASB, and Story will hit in Aug and Sep. Devers will be about the same as first half of 2022, but without the severe drop-off. Yoshida struggles early but has a 300/360/440 second half. Duvall Ks a ton first half and moves to the bench when Story returns. Verdugo hits at a .300 pace but low power. Refsnyder comes back to earth but has some value as a pinch hitter. I like the bullpen but am wary of the starters' health.
 

chrisfont9

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I look forward to being entertained this year and think they have put guys in a position to succeed for the most part. This is an improvement over last year, even before injuries ruined everything. The bigger picture of negativity and FIRE CHAIM garbage I can't stand another minute of, but I guess that's on me to start ignoring it more.
 

LesterFan

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Feel about the same. There's still a lot of question marks and they need a lot to go right just to be able to compete for a wild card spot. What kind of seasons will Casas and Bello have? Will Sale be healthy and effective? How good will Whitlock be in the rotation? Will they get anything from Paxton? Where's the power outside of Devers coming from? Power was an issue at times last season and it's looking even more questionable now. Then there's the middle infield with its own question marks and no one knows if Story will even play this season. Yoshida's projections look really good but I still consider him a question mark until we see what he can do.

If a lot of these things go in their favor, I don't see why they couldn't be in the running for the 3rd wild card. Otherwise it's looking like a sub .500 team.
 

OurF'ingCity

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This is what a team looks like in the middle of a rebuild - some exciting prospects, some solid veterans, and then a bunch of flotsam mixed in.

It’s not a bad strategy - Bloom has all the good players locked up long term, more or less, and can basically just see which of the other players hit and which we can let go or trade without much financial harm.

They still need to bring in some more high-end talent, particularly on the pitching side of things, but theoretically you can see this team in the mix and competing for the second or third wild card (there is no way they compete for the division, IMO). But that’s where I thought they’d be at the end of last year, so I voted about the same.
 

Tony Pena's Gas Cloud

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I had them pegged for 86 wins before Story's injury. I'm a bit less optimistic without him, but I still think they contend on the fringes of a WC spot.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I voted same as before. I was cautiously optimistic and I remain that way. I try not to make judgments in November/December because it does no good to get worked up about any isolated move without seeing the whole picture.
 

Yaz4Ever

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I'd feel much better if we were able to trade for a solid SS like Kim or Adames. That would allow Kike to stay in CF.

The bullpen is much improved.

The starting rotation is anywhere from decent to great, depending on the health of Sale and Paxton. I'll remain optimistic on that for now.

Right now, I'm the same but I'm holding out hope to be far more optimistic. Some of the smaller moves may play much more significantly.
 

Blizzard of 1978

@drballs
Sep 12, 2022
503
New Hampshire
I made my first legal bet for the Red Sox to win the World Series and I look forward to cashing in that +8000 bet in late October or early November.
That's a great bet. $100 for a chance at $8000. They should at least challenge for the wildcard. Just playing 20 games less against the AL East and having a legitimate closer should be a improvement over last season's 78 wins.
Also not having Bobby D and Franchy Codero both in the same lineup striking out multiple times is another positive.
 

Toe Nash

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I am more optimistic than I was last year as Casas, Bello and Yoshida are interesting players and we could see Rafaela and Mata this year along with all the lottery tickets on the pitching staff. Depth is a question for sure; if Yoshida doesn't translate well or if someone like Kiké gets hurt it could get ugly. But I was one of the most pessimistic people on the predictions thread going into last season (unfortunately correct).

One thing last year is they gave ~1700 PA to players under replacement level. This was largely because their starting 1B and CF going into the season sucked and they couldn't find anyone good to replace them. They might be making the same mistake with CF this year if Duvall at age 33 doesn't bounce back but at least 1B should be taken care of.

I know it's easier said than done but finding guys for free to play and not be a black hole seems like something that other teams do much better than the Sox, but maybe my memory is biased there.

If the prospects take steps forward they can build something. It all comes down to that really.
 

Rovin Romine

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I feel the same. Which is to say I'll reserve a final judgment on what the team actually looks like for when the team actually starts playing.

That said, it currently seems like a high variance team to me. With health, they'll be competitive, meaning a post-season berth. But like last year, injuries to key players will be the most likely cause of a derailment.
 

JimD

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I voted 'a bit better' after having seen the moves they've made. I had already baked in Bogaerts leaving and while I'd rather have Kike patrolling CF, I am excited to have Yoshida, Turner and the much improved bullpen. I think Sale is back for real finally and while maybe short of his past peak will provide some quality starts, as will Kluber hopefully. Frankly, so much that could go wrong did go wrong last season, so I suppose I'm seriously hoping for a little regression to the mean here as far as injury luck is concerned. I think this team contends for a wild-card all year and leaves us feeling much more optimistic about the future come next fall.
 

4 6 3 DP

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What I hope to see is Bloom go all in with a strategy this year. I feel like in 2021 he didn't load up at the deadline, and in 2022 he straddled the line. I would like to see 2023 focus on squeezing the juice out of any player that is unlikely to start for the 2024-25 Red Sox. If Sale can produce at a decent level, move him, Paxton if he has anything, Turner, the relievers, Duvall, Verdugo, et al. Make a call who that core is and really start to build a program around them. If we are 3 games out of a WC slot in July, that cannot change the plan. If they do that, I feel much better about this offseason and direction of the franchise.
 

AlNipper49

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I think that this can be a fun team to watch. I, of course, like them winning. However, 90% of my baseball watching is just having it on in the house basically every night. the only time that is an issue when they are cataclysmically bar, or very boring.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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I feel the same. Which is to say I'll reserve a final judgment on what the team actually looks like for when the team actually starts playing.

That said, it currently seems like a high variance team to me. With health, they'll be competitive, meaning a post-season berth. But like last year, injuries to key players will be the most likely cause of a derailment.
The Athletic agrees.

https://theathletic.com/4131947/2023/02/02/red-sox-volatilite-roster/?source=user_shared_article

“What’s dragging down their projections is the fact that they also have a lot of worst-case scenarios in which they’re, frankly, awful. The reality is, the Red Sox are far more volatile than most teams, with real uncertainty at many positions — and outcomes that could go in many different directions, for better or worse”.
 

johnnywayback

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They failed to keep Bogaerts, and they failed to acquire another star via creative trade or free agency to pair with Devers, so I'm still disappointed in the off-season. That said, I think they've done a good job of pivoting in light of those failures to build a team that is as competitive as possible in 2023 without jeopardizing our chances of being really good in 2024 and beyond. So I guess I feel a little bit better.
 

grimshaw

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The Athletic agrees.

https://theathletic.com/4131947/2023/02/02/red-sox-volatilite-roster/?source=user_shared_article

“What’s dragging down their projections is the fact that they also have a lot of worst-case scenarios in which they’re, frankly, awful. The reality is, the Red Sox are far more volatile than most teams, with real uncertainty at many positions — and outcomes that could go in many different directions, for better or worse”.
Also a stand out for me in the article.

"New left fielder Masataka Yoshida signed out of Japan and has only a 37-point gap between his 80-percent OPS+ projection (148) and his 20-percent projection (111). According to ZiPS, he’s the most stable source offense in the Red Sox lineup, and he’s never played a game in the Major Leagues!"
 

BigSoxFan

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I don't think this team is appreciably better than where they were a couple months ago. The biggest move was keeping the guy they already had (Devers). I'm optimistic about Yoshida. I think he has the chance to be a real impact player for us and I'm very excited to watch him play. Casas and Bello are two guys with big upside so I'm excited to watch them play as well and they have the ability to really swing the pendulum a bit here. All the other guys (Turner, Duvall, Mondesi, Kluber) are just meh to me. Hope some of them work out because we desperately need a couple of them to and they weren't necessarily bad signings or anything.

But, truthfully, I'll probably be paying more attention to the farm this year to see how Mayer, Rafaela, and Bleis do. The outlook for this organization looks much, much better if Rafaela is in the bigs by the end of the year, Mayer in AAA, and Bleis in A+ or AA.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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The Red Sox need a lot of things to go right in order for them to make the playoffs this year. One of the biggest things is consistency and I don't think that the Sox have it. They have players that can be good for awhile and then either because of injury or age or water finding its level, that ability to overachieve is going to wane. I think that the Sox will struggle to win 80 games, and I don't believe it's going to be pretty at all.

I hope I'm wrong--I don't like watching bad baseball--but the calculus of how Bloom put this team together is really off. For a guy who is driven by numbers, a lot of the players that he's counting on to be good are based on wishing.
 

Trapaholic

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The day that Bogaerts signed with the Padres was rock bottom for me in terms of expectations for next season. The Devers extension was a shot in the arm, followed by the tough news about Trevor Story.

Bottom line for me - I think we have improved the bullpen and added a bit more pop and athleticism to the lineup. The rotation looks different but there are still a few question marks regarding health and effectiveness.

That rotation is an injury or 2 away from disaster, even when you consider the volatility of starting pitchers in general.

Here's my ask for the 2023 Red Sox: Please be Interesting
 

brs3

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Last year the bullpen blew what, 27 leads? It seems minimally that might shrink, and could shrink considerably. I now think the team could surprise us much like the 2013 team. The annoying thing is it didn't need to be this way. We know the gaping holes and how they could've been avoided, but the team could win despite this. I wouldn't be surprised by another lackluster season or a scrappy against all odds run deep into the playoffs.
 

PrometheusWakefield

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If Sale comes back, if Casas and Bello are legit, if Yoshida's game translates, if the bullpen is solid, if Paxton has another season in him, if Story comes back on schedule and Kike adjusts to a full season as shortstop, if Whitlock and Houck hold up for a full season...

... then we still probably aren't as good as the Blue Jays or Yankees.

The thing that sucks about this team is not that they don't have potential, they do, it's the stacked division making this all feel like a big effort to achieve third place and the last wild card spot.
 

EvilEmpire

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Last year the bullpen blew what, 27 leads? It seems minimally that might shrink, and could shrink considerably.
I don't think the Red Sox will be very good this year unless the starting pitching performs at the highest end of projections and the defense is better than it looks like it could be on paper.

Given all that, I expect it is all but certain that the bullpen won't blow as many leads as last year. The bullpen looks stronger. And maybe there won't be quite so many leads to blow.

Edit: forgot about the Mondesi trade. If he stays healthy the defense should be fine at SS and the OF solid enough with Hernandez in CF and presumably with Duvall regularly in RF and Verdugo in LF on the road with some frequency.
 
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TheYellowDart5

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Apr 16, 2003
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This was a last-place team going into the offseason and is a last-place team coming out of it. That's what you get when your strategy is pursuing a lot of cheap boom-or-bust veterans and letting elite talent walk. Frankly there's just about zero the FO could've done after losing Bogaerts that would've improved things substantially, that one move alone cut the legs out from under the entire winter.