Ok, so we have looked at all the aspects of the Red Sox team. So, let's put it all toghether. First off, the defense will be phenomenal in my opinion. It is saying something with Scutaro may be your worst defensive player (catcher aside). Next, starting pitching is as deep as anyones with quality all through it. That will be really really good. Bullpen is probably a slight step down from last season, but still pretty good. And if Papelbon is back to normal, the bullpen has the chance to be even better. Offense, well, it could be about what it was last year. Maybe a BIT worse. A full year of V-Mart will help a ton though. No Bay will hurt a lot in the same way however.
So, what will come of it? Will the Sox catch the Yanks? I doubt it. That team has too much firepower. The only way that could happen is if the Yanks get old all around the diamond quickly. Now, that isn't really a jest either as they have some definite age on that team. What will happen to them if Mo shits the bed and father time finally catches up to them? Bad news then. What if Pettite gets hit at the same time. What if *gasp* Jeter suddenly shows his age. It isn't likely, but it is possible with that team. I don't think it will happen though. So, I think the Sox finish behind the Yanks. Now, what about the Rays? Hmmm.... good question. They should give the Sox a good battle. I think the Sox match up better than they have in the past with them though, head to head. Fewer baserunners means fewer chances to steal. That is what killed the Red Sox the past two seasons. I think now, the Sox have the upper hand on the Rays. This will most likely lead to a wild card birth. I don't see anyone in the AL that can challenge the AL East in that regard. So, figure on the Wild Card and possibly another date with the Yanks in the ALCS. Another classic battle. And I think that the Sox can beat them. I imagine it will be a loss to them however. No matter what, it should be a great season to watch.
I am looking forward to it.