Are the Red Sox Playoff Bound in 2015?


I bet most Red Sox fans feel like this happened months ago, but now it’s official. This past weekend, the Sox were eliminated from AL East contention. And finally, one of the most dreadful seasons in recent history is drawing closer to an end.

So, what’s next?

Well, I would advise against using the word “rebuild.” We aren’t quite taking about the 2012 offseason, where we all knew that drastic roster changes needed to be made. Nothing about this team tells me they can’t band together, bring a few new guys in, and make a run at the postseason as soon as next season. That’s why I feel more comfortable using the word “regroup.”

Let’s start by looking at each spot on the diamond.

1- Pitcher — Obviously, this is the biggest weak spot at the moment. After losing 4 of the 5 guys in the 2013 World Series rotation, it’s inevitable that Ben Cherington and staff will go after some good arms over the offseason. And until then, we’ll have the chance to see what some youngsters, like Anthony Ranaudo, can do at the Major League level as this season carries on. Now, I’d be lying if i said I wasn’t a little worried about next year’s rotation, but I feel like things could work out just fine if the Sox play their cards right with free agent pitchers. I’d like to see Cherington go for an ace (Jon Lester or Max Scherzer) and a middle-of-the-rotation guy (James Shields, Johnny Cueto, Brandon McCarthy) this offseason. If so, I believe this rotation can clean itself out in no time.


  1. Jon Lester
  2. Clay Buchholz
  3. James Shields
  4. Joe Kelley
  5. Anthony Ranaudo

2- Catcher — Things might not change here too much. With Christian Vazquez growing more comfortable in the Majors, and David Ross wanting to play one more year, I think they’ll be back as Boston’s duo for 2015.


  • Christian Vazquez
  • David Ross

3- First Base — With Mike Napoli growing more and more comfortable with first base, I feel more confident in him than I ever have since he arrived in Boston. But, with his injury history, we have to keep a close eye on backup options. And, since the Sox have such a deep outfield, that should be where those backups will come from


4- Second Base — Dustin Pedroia will hold this starting spot until the glove is ripped off his hand. From there, the ever-so-vercitile Brock Holt can fill in when needed.


  • Dustin Pedroia
  • Brock Holt

5- Third Base — There are many different options here. With Will Middlebrooks, Xander Bogaerts, and Brock Holt all on the Major League roster at the moment, it really comes down to picking two of the three. Now I’ll admit, after being the biggest Will Middlebrooks fan when he first saw the Majors, I really haven’t seen anything out of him that proves he deserves a starting spot. With that being said, the best option may be to trade him and give Garin Cecchini a chance to prove himself.


  • Brock Holt
  • Garin Cecchini

Aug 23, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox third baseman Brock Holt (26) throws to first base against the Seattle Mariners during the fifth inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

6- Shortstop — Even though Xander Bogaerts has been very streaky this season, I still think he’s the best option at short. Because, let’s not forget, this kids’ potential is still through the roof.


  • Xander Bogaerts
  • Garin Cecchini

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7-9- Outfield — With the acquisition of Rusney Castillo, there’s a lot going on here. But, I like to see this as a good problem to have. Now it just comes down to choosing the starters (no pressure, Ben). As of now, I see two guys, Yoenis Cespedes and Rusney Castillo, as the two locks for starting spots. From there, the decision will be between Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr., Shane Victorino, Daniel Nava, and Allen Craig. This is a tough choice, which will probably be ever-changing between now and April 2015. As of just a few weeks ago, I had Jackie Bradley Jr. in the last outfield slot. But, with the recent crumble of JBJ along with the impressive play by Mookie Betts, I’m starting to lean more toward Betts. That leaves us with Victorino, Nava, and Craig. With Victorino’s recent injury struggles, I’m starting to think he may never cement a starting spot again. But, if he stays healthy, he could prove to be a valuable bench player along with Nava and Craig.


  • LF: Yoenis Cespedes
  • CF: Rusney Castillo
  • RF: Mookie Betts
  • Bench: Shane Victorino, Daniel Nava, Allen Craig

Designated Hitter — David Ortiz… That is all.

Offense — Looking at it now, this already appears to be a playoff-ready lineup. All they need is some pitching to back them up, and the Sox can begin to do some real damage again.


  1. Rusney Castillo
  2. Dustin Pedroia
  3. David Ortiz
  4. Yoenis Cespedes
  5. Mike Napoli
  6. Brock Holt
  7. Xander Bogaerts
  8. Mookie Betts
  9. Christian Vazquez

And finally, my 2015 prediction. As mentioned, I think the Sox can be playoff ready by next season. But, I’m not expecting too much; not this fast. I see the Orioles winning the AL East, with the Sox earning a wild card spot and making it to the ALDS. Nothing too impressive, but still a major step forward to becoming championship contenders again.