I’m really amazed at how intact the 2007 Red Sox are so far with less than 2 months to spring training. Not a single key player is left to sign and only a couple that got regular playing time in 2007 have been let go.
I took the 25-man World Series roster and added a few key players that were left off (Tavarez and Wakefield) to see how we’re doing.
Here’s how it stacks up as of today:
||Jason Varitek/Doug Mirabelli|
|1st Base||Kevin Youkilis/
||Kevin Youkilis/Sean Casey|
|2nd Base||Dustin Pedroia||Dustin Pedroia|
|Shortstop||Julio Lugo/Alex Cora||Julio Lugo/Alex Cora|
|3rd Base||Mike Lowell||Mike Lowell|
|Left Field||Manny Ramirez||Manny Ramirez|
|Center Field||Coco Crisp/Jacoby Ellsbury||Coco Crisp/Jacoby Ellsbury|
|Right Field||J. D. Drew/Bobby Kielty||J. D. Drew/Bobby Kielty/Jonathan Van Every|
|DH||David Ortiz||David Ortiz|
|Starting Pitcher||Josh Beckett||Josh Beckett|
|Starting Pitcher||Curt Schilling||Curt Schilling|
|Starting Pitcher||Tim Wakefield||Tim Wakefield|
|Starting Pitcher||Daisuke Matsuzaka||Daisuke Matsuzaka|
|Starting Pitcher||Jon Lester||Jon Lester|
|Relief Pitcher||Manny Delcarmen||Manny Delcarmen|
|Relief Pitcher||Julian Tavarez||Julian Tavarez|
|Relief Pitcher||Javier Lopez||Javier Lopez|
|Relief Pitcher||Mike Timlin||Mike Timlin|
|Relief Pitcher||Hideki Okajima||Hideki Okajima|
|Relief Pitcher||Kyle Snyder||Kyle Snyder|
|Closer||Jonathan Papelbon||Jonathan Papelbon|
Amazing. At the start of the 2007 season, it was said that, on paper, this appeared to be a championship team. It turns out they were right. Wouldn’t that mean that essentially the same team would look the same in 2008?
Some players will likely not come back as strong. I think Schilling will continue his aging decline, but Dice-K should be even more effective after seeing the league once. Hopefully Ortiz will come back strong and we won’t suffer the kinds of injuries as the last half of the 2006 season.
In any case, I’m optimistic.
Update 1/11/2008: Mirabelli is back!
Update 1/19/2008: Lopez re-signed. Youk and Snyder still in salary arbitration.
Update 2/2/2008: Youkilis and Snyder re-signed. Sean Casey added at 1st base.