7 Red Sox Players to look out for this Season
Boston Red Sox fans have been in a dreamland since they won the World Series in 2013. Well, who can blame them? What makes that triumph all the more sweeter for everyone is the fact that before the season got underway, no one gave them a chance. They were at rock bottom of AL East with a 69-93 record in the previous season.
Then the management came up with one of those brilliant ideas and appointed John Farrell as the manager. The move worked to perfection and the Red Sox were crowned the best baseball team in the business for the eighth time in their history. Here is a stat for you: They are the only team to have won three World Series titles since the turn of the century. So it has been an interesting ride for the team and their fans.
Farrell was the catalyst but a lot of credit should also go to the players who realized that the 2011- 2012 season simply wasn’t good enough and dusted themselves up from the ground to reach the top of the MLB again. The Red Sox are the team to beat this season and the players will need to step up to the plate even more than before if they are to successfully defend their title. The time has now come for us to look at the men who we think will be crucial for the team in 2014:
Xander Bogaerts went on a rampage in the postseason and was one of the big reasons why the Red Sox clinched the World Series. He made just eighteen regular season appearances and batted at .250 with five RBI and an OBP of 320. In the first season aged 21, that record is par for the course. But as soon as the postseason festivities began he turned into a different man altogether. He hit .296 and pummeled nine runs. His on base percentage was .412, which was just staggering. He is one for the future and if he continues the same way then the Red Sox have a batter who will terrorize the opposition for quite some time to come.
Bradley is another one for the future and the Boston Red Sox have very high hopes when it comes to the 23 year old outfielder. He had a stellar preseason last time around but didn’t really match that form when the ball got rolling. His form was patchy at best and with Jacoby Ellsbury not around, Bradley will need to make his presence felt. The team management thinks very highly of him so it is time to repay the faith Mr. Bradley.
So the big question is will Koji Uehara once again be able to put up the sort of numbers he did last year? Well a lot of people would say no because those stats were definitely from another planet, 101 strikeouts, 1.09 ERA with nine walks only in just a fraction over 74 innings during the regular season. To say that big things are once again expected from the 2013 ALCS MVP would be an understatement.
For Red Sox, he has been the ‘go to guy’ for quite some time now. We all know what he is capable of and he hardly ever lets his team down. He spent most of the last season in pain due to a thumb injury but still racked up 9 HR’s, RBI 84, .372 OBP and an overall .301 AVG over 160 games. Pedroia is another key the Red Sox will need to unlock all those home runs.
At 29, many would say that Clay Buchholz is at the peak of his career and they will not be too far off the mark as well. He didn’t play a lot of games last season with a neck injury but when he did step on to the plate he delivered and delivered big time. The Boston Red Sox pitcher had a 12- 1 record with a 1.74 ERA. What he did in the short time he played, earned him an All Star spot. The only thing is that he hasn’t started more than 30 games ever. If he is fit for a longer period then that will come as a huge boost to The Old Towne Team.
Shane Victorino proved a lot of people wrong last season by picking up the Gold Glove for being the best right field in Major League Baseball. A resurgent Victorino played in 122 games last season and his record during the season was: 15 HRs, RBI 61, OBP .351 and average of .294. He played out of his skin and more than did his share of the work to propel the Red Sox to the biggest prize in MLB. His form is going to be crucial once again if the Red Sox are to go anywhere near the World Series.
Last but by no means the least we come to the talisman of the team, Big Papi, David Ortiz. His status among the most legendary names in the Boston Red Sox history is all but guaranteed. He might be coming to the twilight of his career but he is still as important to the team as ever. Ortiz played 137 games and hit 30 home runs to go with 103 RBIs. This is the seventh straight time that the big man has racked up 30 HR’s or more to go a minimum of 100 RBI’s in a season. He capped off a remarkable campaign by getting his hands on the World Series MVP award. The Boston Red Sox will be hoping he has another epic season because he is the heart and soul of that team and if he fires, then pitchers around the league will not be sleeping easy.
So here is the list of seven players that we think can make the difference for Boston Red Sox. If you have anything to say about it, then make yourselves heard.