In response to carnie's comment:
In response to jidgef's comment:
After two very disappointing seasons, although one was still a 90 win season, this team has earned some degree of cynicism. But after watching this team for the past five weeks, fifteen games and a couple workouts, I am convinced that this team will at the very least win more than they lose. For those of you who are too young to remember, that is what Dick Williams predicted in 1967 when he inherited a next-to-last place team that is now most responsible for creating the Red Sox nation as we now know it. They took advantage of a season without a super team, unfortunately except for the Cardinals in the NL, to win a very close pennant race. I am not ready to declare that this team will win a pennant this year, but I have seen a lot of the AL East teams, they're all here in Florida, and no one is going to run away with the division just as no one is going to be blown away and left behind. Every team in the division could win the division or finish last in the division, that's the way I see it.
The key word from many of the posts on this thread is "IF"! If Lester, if, Buch, if Lackey, if, Doubie, if Dempster, if Papi and so on. Not all of these lf's are going to have a positive outcome. I haven't seen Ortiz yet so I can't be too optimistic about him. But I can tell you that there is an energy here. It starts with the starters who have been working quickly, pounding the strike zone, and for the most part getting great results. Pedroia, Gomes, Napoli, Salty and Victorino are competitive veterans who hustle, who care, and who appear to be leading by example. The bullpen looks outstanding! And the defense looks at times, spectacular. Finally the kids; before this eason is over we will see very meaningful performances from Iglesias, Bradley Jr., Webster, Ciriaco, Holt, and one of either Linares of Hazelbaker. There is a ton of talent waiting in the wings.
It should be a fun ride!
I'm not sure the Cards were a great team in 67 either. Unfortunately for the Red Sox they did have one of the greatest pitchers who ever lived.
Shows how much great pitching is usually the difference maker.