Red Sox: A revised look at AL East division
By Rick McNair
This team can hit – really hit. Top to bottom power with Chris Davis, Manny Machado, Mark Trumbo, Adam Jones all serious long ball threats. Even J.J. Hardy can still hit them out. Jonathan Schoop is – at least to me – an underrated player. There are, however, a few holes in the offense. Seth Smith and Hyun Soo Kim are questionable and Welington Castillo got the big conract, but can he hit 15-20 out?
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Dylan Bundy and the no names is not a singing group, but the O’s rotation. In a recent series against New York the staff just continually gave it up. With Wade Miley and Kevin Gausman you have a 50/50 shot at a win. With Ubaldo Jimenez that certainly drops.
The loss of All-World closer Zach Britton was painful in several games and the balance of the relief corps is just average at best. Far too often a good start will be blown by a poor ‘pen or lousy start will see a solid ‘pen performance wasted.
I don’t expect much from the O’s in the long haul since their pitching is questionable and the lineup power can be nullified by quality starters.
Strength – They pound the ball.
Weakness – The rotation is weak unless a few starters find a nice groove. The bullpen is questionable without Britton.
Chances – Buck Showalter will keep them close – 85 wins may be their plateau.