Boston Red Sox: 2015 Offensive Projections


Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

With my two previous articles centered on the Red Sox Starting rotation I thought it time to delve into their upcoming Offense.

For years and years Boston has been known as an Offensive Powerhouse. Players like Manny Ramirez, David Ortiz, Mike Lowell, Johnny Damon, Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin Pedroia (among others) have not only helped their team win several Division titles but have also driven them to 3 Championship titles.

Some where along the way that “Recipe” for success, especially offensively, disappeared. Ben Cherington actually owned up to his part, his role, in the failure known as the 2014 season. For the first time in what seems like forever, the Offense was an issue. Not wanting to make the same mistake twice, Ben set out to improve his team’s offense however he could. The two biggest acquisitions that cost the organization a lot of money and a couple of draft picks were; Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez. Two players that can flat out hit, one of which with great Power potential. Both of these players are projected to be in the “meat” of the lineup, which should lengthen innings.

Not an acquisition but someone who should impact the daily lineup is; Mookie Betts. I for one am penciling him in as the daily Leadoff hitter. Mookie possesses a rare combination of speed, athleticism, a solid batting average, and Power that should only get better the more he plays.

Behind him should be “Old Faithful” Dustin Pedroia. Pedey’s power numbers may have decreased over the years but you can always count on that little guy to give his all, injuries or no injuries. If Pedey can stay healthy this season I actually expect his power numbers to increase a bit.

Next up should be our own version of “Father Time” David Ortiz. Big Papi or “Large Father” never seems to show his age and has found the whereabouts of the Fountain of Youth apparently. Though I do believe his age will catch up with him at some point, I fully expect Papi to give us 30HR’s and 100RBI.

Behind Ortiz should be the newly acquired; Hanley Ramirez. HanRam’s bat has never been in question as he hits both Righties and Lefties equally as well. Hitting for Power has never been the question either. Health is the major issue following the former Red Sox International Free Agent (Originally signed in July 2000). If Hanley can’t stay healthy this year (played in 214 out of 324 games over the last 2 years) it could create a problem.

I fully expect Pablo Sandoval to bat behind Hanley, giving the Sox a solid left, right, left combination. I expect Panda to hit a lot of Doubles and Singles while also providing the occasional HR (15 or more).

Next up should be our 1st Baseman; Mike Napoli. Last year Nap tried to play through injuries, while also suffering the affects of Sleep Apnea. His production at the plate slipped because of it. I’m hoping for a good year from him, which is typical of players in their Contract year.

After Napoli the lineup could be a “who’s who” but in my lineup I have either Rusney Castillo or Xander Bogaerts batting seventh, with the other player batting eighth. Both of these players are a bit of a question mark going into the season and both possess a lot of Raw skill and Power. I’m expecting much better results from Bogey this year.

Rounding out the lineup should be the two Catchers; Christian Vazquez and newly acquired Ryan Hanigan.

Though I do expect progression in Vazquez’s game, including at the plate, I don’t expect miracles from either Catcher.

Projecting player stats is nearly impossible, even the great Bill James is routinely off with his numbers. I will attempt to play the role of Mr. James.

  1. Betts- .294AVG, .840 OPS, 14HR’s, 43RBI
  2. Pedroia- .303AVG, .761OPS, 11HR’s, 69RBI
  3. Ortiz- .286AVG, .916OPS, 30HR’s, 100RBI
  4. Ramirez- .301AVG, .869OPS, 23HR’s, 83RBI
  5. Napoli- .259AVG, .817OPS, 23HR’s, 73RBI
  6. Sandoval- .279AVG, .769OPS, 17HR’s, 76RBI
  7. Castillo- .269AVG, .749OPS, 15HR’s, 63RBI
  8. Bogaerts- .279AVG, .762OPS, 16HR’s, 57RBI
  9. Vazquez- .253AVG, .669OPS, 5HR’s, 40RBI

When it’s all said and done the Red Sox should, with Health, end the season in the top 5 Offensively. Final numbers (that includes the entire roster of Hitters) should look like this:

.273AVG/.339OBP/.410SLG/.749OPS with 169HR’s

As I said previously the Starting staff should provide a lot of Wins, 67-76 in total, the hitters should provide an additional 15 Wins beyond that for a win total between; 82-91. Whether the Bullpen can Hold/Save those games is the great unknown. If the Bullpen does their job we could be looking at winning the Division, giving us another worst to first season. (My final projection is 88 Wins)

I for one can’t wait for the season to begin, Go Sox!