Monday, April 03, 2006

Opening Day

It's opening day and everyone's predicting that the Red Sox won't make the playoffs this year. That's pretty shocking given how shaky the Yankee pen is and the lack of history for the BlueJays success.

I'm going on record now to say the race will come down to the end of the season, and it will be neck and neck tie between the New York Yankees and your hometown heros, the Boston Red Sox. Since Baltimore and Toronto have improved in the offseason, I believe the wild card will come from outside the division, which means whoever loses that final race won't even make the playoffs.

Of course, I'm predicting the Sox will win out in the end. I'm guessing they'll take 96 games, just edging out the Yankees.

I believe the pen is stronger than last years and I believe the starting rotation may be stronger (it all comes down to the health of Schilling, Foulke, and Beckett). The defense is certainly stronger. The offense will be weaker, but as long as Manny and Ortiz stay healthy throughout, it won't be an issue.

It looks like the Sox have built in contingencies for all possibilities to get into the playoffs this year. The only lack is a true 5th hitter and the possibility of a Manny or Ortiz injury. Getting into the playoffs this year hinges on those two.

Once in the playoffs, it all comes down to the pitching. Will Schilling and Beckett be able to (be healthy enough) to get it done?

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