Baseball is finally here. While Spring Training can hold people off, many are fiending for the season to start. We're right there with you. We look forward to the brutal grind of the baseball season. The braintrust behind Ted's Army came together and put out expectations for our beloved Boston Red Sox and how they would fair in the 2013 campaign. Without further ado... I give you part one of the Ted's Army season preview.
Who will pan out to be the best acquisition of
Tucker Silva: Koji Uehara Pitched
in the AL East for the Orioles in 2011 and had a career-low ERA of 1.72. Uehara
will be the anchor of the Red Sox bullpen. Not a bad one-year signing of $4.25
Nick Karalis: Jonny Gomes…I guess:
There was not one acquisition that I was even the least bit excited
about, and I should go with no one. Though, if Gomes does get some playing
time, he could be good for 15-20 homers and a somewhat decent .260 - .280 BA. I
still think the Sox over-paid for him.
Aaron Gettings:The player formally known as John Lackey. I've said nothing but vile, terrible things about him since he donned that Sox cap. But I'm prepared to pretend none of that ever happened. It's a clean slate for he and I. He won't let me down.
Ben Fountain: Koji Uehara. I've been smitten with this signing since Day 1. Incredible control, an absurd strikeout-to-walk ratio, can go multiple innings and is just as solid against left-handed batters as he is against righties. He will be the glue guy in the bullpen.
Scott Priest: I'm going to cheat a bit and say the best offseason acquisition was the one we didn't make: There was no panic move to get Josh Hamilton or Zack Greinke to get headlines. They also didn't trade out of any of their surpluses (catching, bullpen) when the value wasn't there, which is good.
Which acquisition will constantly haunt Sox fans throughout the year?
Tucker: Joel Hanrahan. Already
having a horrid Spring Training, Hanrahan is a giant question mark on the
back-end of the bullpen being an NL transplant. Be prepared for an ERA around
3.90 and several blown saves.
Drew. Another Drew in Boston spells
disaster. Stephen has already hit a speed bump in Ft. Myers with the concussion
and the #7 on his back isn’t very comforting.
The Sox gave him $9.5 million, and it has been 3 years since Drew has
played a “full season” . We better hope he doesn’t develop any hamstring
issues. I know it’s only for a season,
but they would have been better off with Iglesias or Bogaerts.
Aaron: Ryan Dempster. I become physically ill each time I think of him having to face against that Blue Jays lineup.
Ben: I have to say Shane Victorino. It hurts because I'm a fan of the Flyin Hawaiian but he shouldn't have recieved the same deal as Mike Napoli did, especially with the struggles he had last season. I know the Sox want character guys in their locker room, but this is a preimum to pay for someone who is taking Pedroia's #2 spot in the lineup and Jackie Bradley's position in the outfield.
Scott: The worst move will probably end up being Shane Victorino. In pure baseball value, his seems the least likely to pay off, although it's close with Gomes and Dempster. Given that the organization was paying for personalities as well, I don't think any of the deals were complete disasters.
Which pitcher will serve as the “anchor” of the bullpen?
Tucker: Andrew Bailey. After
missing the majority of the 2012 season, Bailey still has something to prove in
Boston. With the acquisition of Hanrahan, Bailey has the most motivation to
succeed and prove management wrong…as long as he can stay healthy.
Nick: Daniel Bard: He’s back and will return to his old form. He
is where he belongs and has a great coaching staff to get him to where he needs
Aaron: Koji Uehara is the greatest pitcher to ever throw a baseball. Opposing teams will collectively wet their pants as they see Koji Uehara step onto the mound. He is all that is man. [OK Ben, I sang Uehara's praises as we agreed. Now please release my daughter. I beg you.]
Ben: HA! I would never kidnap anyone to use as blackmail, especially to convince people that Koji Uehara will be awesome. I mean seriously, look at the stats. Then look at how awesome his facial game hair can be.
He's going to take Fenway by storm this year. Koji fever! CATCH IT NOW.
Scott: Koji Uehara. He's been so consistent in his big-league career, and I don't see any reason to expect otherwise this year. (Ed. Note: See Aaron, Scott took the easy way. Maybe next time you will too. Now come get your daughter.)
That's all for today kids. Tomorrow, we'll discuss who will be the ace of the staff, who's primed for a breakthrough year and who has the most pressure to succeed this season.