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Springing some Red Sox predictions

Posted by Chad Finn, Globe Staff  March 12, 2012 11:40 AM

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While we keep an eye on the Red Sox against Giancarlo Cruz-Michael Stanton and the Marlins on ESPN, here are nine cowardly fearless Red Sox predictions for the season ahead. I'll come up with some more thorough thoughts on how the season might go as Opening Day nears, but feel free to have at these now, because I'm sticking to 'em ...

1. Because it wouldn't be spring without me making this prediction, I'll get it out of the way now -- Jon Lester will win 20 games. Mean it, too.

2. If Jose Iglesias starts the season with the Red Sox, he and his sub-.500 OPS will be back in Pawtucket by May.

3. Mike Aviles will have a better offensive season in Boston than Marco Scutaro will in Colorado.

4. Ryan Sweeney's excellent defense and the fact that's not named J.D. Drew will make him a fan favorite, and he'll even surpass his career high of six home runs.

5. Andrew Miller (pictured) will open the season as the No. 5 starter, but fellow out-of-options lefty Felix Doubront will eventually seize the role and thrive.

6. Bobby Valentine and Josh Beckett will bicker publicly at least once early in the season, but an angry Beckett is an effective Beckett and he'll have a strong season.

7. Kevin Youkilis will put up numbers similar to his career 162-game average (23 homers, 98 RBIs), but he won't come within 20 games of playing all 162.

8. Jenny Dell will eventually appear on NESN.

9. As for today's Completely Random Baseball Card:

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I'll be conservative and put him down for 25 homers, but I have zero doubt what we saw last year was real.

About Touching All The Bases

Irreverence and insight from Chad Finn, a Globe/Boston.com sports writer and media columnist. A winner of several national and regional writing awards, he is the founder and sole contributor to the TATB blog, which launched in December 2004. Yes, he realizes how lucky he is.

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