Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 10/25/12

BOSTON –– The Red Sox have missed three consecutive postseasons. One of the squandered opportunities came during John Farrell's tenure as Boston's pitching coach in 2010. But Farrell watched the Red Sox organization's last two trying seasons from afar with the Blue Jays. He can sympathize, considering injuries decimated Toronto's starting rotation last season. With a bevy of All-Stars on the Red Sox roster –– many who underachieved in 2012 –– it begs the question about whether the franchise can contend in 2013. "I think a couple of things will need to happen," Farrell said. "Certain players [need to] return to the form and the performance that they've established for themselves and not just one-year situation. "Guys who have established a career path and a career record of being above average and get the guys back who were taken out because of injury, to get them back fully healthy and then whatever additions are brought forward into this group." Without naming names, Farrell was likely referring to Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz, Daniel Bard, Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz. The three pitchers fell short of expectations, resulting in Boston finishing with the third-worst ERA in the AL. The latter trio was shelved at different points of the season with injuries, taking the punch out of Boston's lineup. If those six standouts rebound and the Red Sox add a few mores pieces to the puzzle, Farrell believes there is reason to be optimistic. "I think this has got an opportunity to be a fairly quick turnaround and get to the point of contending next year," he said.  Have a question for Didier Morais? Send it to him via Twitter at @DidierMorais or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag.

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