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   1. Jose is an Absurd Sultan Posted: December 30, 2012 at 05:43 PM (#4334746)
Five things I hope I see in 2013;

1 - Jackie Bradley makes his major league debut in more than a September call up.

2 - Junichi Tazawa becomes a key part of the bullpen.

3 - Mike Napoli hits a few homers for the Red Sox that make my jaw drop.

4 - Jon Lester returns to form.

5 - Just a general sense of stability and sanity around the team for twelve months.

Happy New Year to all!
   2. SoSH U at work Posted: December 30, 2012 at 05:55 PM (#4334754)
Any others?

Bobby V-free living tops my list.

Happy New Year to all Therapudians.
   3. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 30, 2012 at 05:58 PM (#4334756)
4 - Jon Lester returns to form.

This. I believe the addition of Ross to the cache of catching that the Sox seem to be hoarding will be beneficial to the entire staff. If this proves to be a smart move by the club, this alone will see them gain 7-8 wins above their pythag from last year(yeah, what I'm tying to say basically is if the SP does what is expected of them, the club should be around 83-85 wins)

Hopefully the new additions will all perform to expectations and the club can actually challenge for a wild card, one game, totally randomness opportunity....
   4. Jittery McFrog Posted: December 30, 2012 at 06:40 PM (#4334782)
No more Beckett.

And on an actually positive note, Victorino. Offseason strategy aside, he seems like a player who should be fun to root for.

Happy New Year!
   5. Darren Posted: December 30, 2012 at 07:22 PM (#4334803)

Bobby V-free living tops my list.

Can't believe both Jose and I missed this one!
   6. Pleasant Nate (Upgraded from 'Nate') Posted: December 31, 2012 at 01:22 AM (#4335077)
I'll tack on a pair too:

1) Watching the Xander Bogaerts ride. Everything is in play. There's no limit on up or down. As he spends more time in AA and the high minors/majors, we should get a better sense of where he's heading.

2) Getting Ortiz back. He's still a joy to watch hit.
   7. Jose is an Absurd Sultan Posted: December 31, 2012 at 08:01 AM (#4335185)
One thought on 2012 which generally sucked. The Sox get grief for the self-promotion but I thought they absolutely killed it with the 100th anniversary celebration in April. They did a great job with that one.
   8. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 31, 2012 at 08:30 AM (#4335200)
Great post. Happy new year, y'all. Tomorrow, it will be a year in which the Red Sox could have a good year.

Some more for the list-

-Felix Doubront, the continued development of. When he was on, he was amazing. I think we should get a few more games of that.
-Will Middlebrooks hitting baseballs. He has that kind of bat where contact sounds and looks different.
-Jacoby Ellsbury, theoretically healthy. He's an amazing ballplayer when all the parts of his body work.
-No more Bobby V. This really can't be said too many times.
   9. Dale Sams Posted: December 31, 2012 at 09:51 AM (#4335237)
So, Francona was DeVriess...Valentine was Queeg...that makes Farrell, Maryk? The guy who jumped overboard and swam back?

For the list: ALL the new guys (if we get Napoli) are worth watching for either upside or to flex their platoon prowess.
   10. covelli chris p Posted: December 31, 2012 at 10:00 AM (#4335240)
really interested to see what doubront does this year. i think he has a pretty good chance to be a solid guy in the middle of the rotation if he can just be a little more efficient.

curious to see what we have in webster and de la rosa. also looking forward to tracking bogaerts, barnes, and bradley for another year.

does buchholz stop teasing us and put together a full season?
   11. jmurph Posted: December 31, 2012 at 10:39 AM (#4335254)
Good stuff everyone. In the spirit of being positive and optimistic, I'll put in a plug for Pedroia, who probably doesn't get talked about enough because there is always something else to talk about with this team. Based on absolutely nothing, I expect him to "rebound" from last year's merely All Star caliber play to being MVP caliber again this year.
   12. CM in NY Posted: December 31, 2012 at 12:15 PM (#4335335)
Long time lurker, occasional poster here.

My happy thought: nowhere to go but up.

Also, on a more personal note, having to hear my father complain that they spent so much money on AGon to hit home runs (now he complains that they traded away their best player).
   13. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: December 31, 2012 at 01:39 PM (#4335418)
New Speier article about Pimentel and the Sox farm.

The Sox may be ready to empty the farm in the next couple of years to acquire top-tier talent for the ML roster.
   14. tfbg9 Posted: December 31, 2012 at 08:48 PM (#4335673)
John Lackey: 2013 AL Comeback Player of the Year. Book it.
   15. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: December 31, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4335707)
What was the worst of the Valentine era?

When he was in NY he was okay, for the most part. The mustache thing was overblown, and I don't recall anything similar in Boston.
   16. JJ1986 Posted: December 31, 2012 at 10:24 PM (#4335710)
What was the worst of the Valentine era?

At one point, he wrote out the wrong lineup because he thought the opposing pitcher threw with his other hand, information he got by looking it up on his phone.
   17. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: December 31, 2012 at 11:54 PM (#4335748)
What I'm looking forward to in 2013?

Portland Seadogs and Pawtucket Red Sox baseball.

On the big club:

- The Lester thing is right on - he could be a Cy Young candidate, or he could be more of 2012. It's probably the single biggest variable in how good the 2013 Red Sox will be.

- I have a bad feeling about Ellsbury - I just think 2011 will be seen as one of the greatest outlier seasons on the 2010s. He'll sign a one-year contract with somebody next offseason to re-establish his value (see "Beltre, Adrian", or "Drew, Stephen")

- Which minor-leaguer will make the earliest, biggest breakthrough in 2013? If Ellsbury gets hurt (again), will Bradley be ready to go? What if Bogaerts goes bananas early in 2013?
   18. Mattbert Posted: January 01, 2013 at 12:17 AM (#4335752)
I am mostly excited about the young talent coming through the system from the draft and acquired by trade. The farm is pretty deep and has a handful of legit potential impact players at the top. The development of what will hopefully turn out to be the next generation of home-grown core contributors is the thing I'm looking forward to the most in 2013.

The big club also looks to be a lot more interesting and likable at this point. That's also good. I don't even really care if they win 80 games, 90 games, whatever. I don't expect to feel depressed whenever I pull on my Sox cap this year. Anything they can accomplish on the field is gravy.
   19. Jose is an Absurd Sultan Posted: January 01, 2013 at 07:52 AM (#4335796)
What was the worst of the Valentine era?

For me it was the Youkilis thing early in the season. It's not so much that what he said was so over the top awful but the way it demonstrated how (pick one) Valentine completely didn't understand how the Boston media worked or didn't have the balls to go talk to a player face to face rather than go running to the press.
   20. Jose is an Absurd Sultan Posted: January 01, 2013 at 08:02 AM (#4335797)
Which minor-leaguer will make the earliest, biggest breakthrough in 2013?

The guy I'm eager to see is Michael Almanzar. 2012 was a breakthrough for him. He didn't turn into Wade Boggs but his K and BB rates showed pretty dramatic improvements and the homers aren't there but the doubles got piled up. He's 22 this year and physically he reminds me of Middlebrooks at the same age; tall and lean (dare I say lanky?) but with room to fill out.

On the mound I want to see how Henry Owens progresses. He overcame a bad start to 2012 and seems to be very highly regarded.
   21. villageidiom Posted: January 01, 2013 at 10:48 AM (#4335830)
What was the worst of the Valentine era?
To give an example of actual baseless criticism he'd gotten from within the team, he cited people being overly sensitive to his snide comments to Will Middlebrooks after a bad defensive inning. Later in the season, to give an example of how the media invents controversy, he cited the same example, this time suggesting the whole thing was made up.

In short, he made up a story to make himself look good at others' expense.

All that aside, I am looking forward to a division-wide race. Suddenly, all divisional games are compelling.
   22. Mattbert Posted: January 01, 2013 at 09:00 PM (#4336514)
I am looking forward to a division-wide race. Suddenly, all divisional games are compelling.

Agreed. I can see a team taking the division with <90 wins and that team actually being an absolute powerhouse relative to the rest of the AL.
   23. Phil Coorey. Posted: January 02, 2013 at 01:04 AM (#4336647)
Happy New Year Everyone !

I'm looking forward to the season as long as I keep my expectations in check - who knows, they might pull a Baltimore...
   24. esturminator_CT Posted: January 03, 2013 at 12:33 PM (#4337976)
Happy New Year 2013!

Thanks to all for the enjoyable reading over the holidays.

Looking forward to in 2013:
1 – Red Sox not having one of the 6 worst W/L records in MLB (>75 Wins)
2 – A team OBP > 3.20 and K/BB < 2.50
3 – A team WHIP < 1.33 and ERA < 4.20
4 – A manager who can talk to his players
5 – A clubhouse which is not the laughing stock of the league
6 - Not being saddled with long term contracts on averge or worse producers
7 - Not watching our young prospects mature rapidly and contribute solidly with other clubs
8 – An August where there is still something to play for
9 – Return of some pride in donning my Red Sox cap and jersey

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