While sitting on the couch watching last night's game I couldn't help but imagine what next year's starting lineup might look like on opening day, subject to the absence of any trades for position players.
Here are a few thoughts to consider, per Abbott & Costello's famous routine, 'Who's on first?' We've all seen what Napoli brings to the table both offensively and defensively. But is there any chance that he might be platooned with Craig, or for that matter loose his job altogether?
I think the general consensus is that Pedroia is a lock at 2B.
So who will be Pedey's partner at SS, Holt? Bogearts? Betts? Marrero?
And the question looms just as large at 3B, Middlebrooks? Holt? Bogearts? Cecchini?
And don't allow anyone to convince you that Vazquez has a lock on the starting catcher's job. Swihart and Butler will be chomping at the bit in Spring Training.
The most tantalizing question of all, however, will be who makes up the outfield trio. Candidates in alphabetical order:
Betts, Bradley Jr., Brentz, Castillo, Cecchini, Cespedes, Craig, Hassan, Holt, Nava, Victorino.
And quite naturally, Big Papi is a lock as DH.
Which brings us to pitching which is way, way beyond my pay grade, so I won't even go there.
But personally, after the desultory season just experienced, I'd be in favor of just foregoing the Fall and Winter months and giving up Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Eve, and just fast forward to Spring Training to witness the birth of a new and exciting edition of what's to come, (hopefully).