Are the Red Sox headed for a Joe Btfsplk season?

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - SEPTEMBER 09: Trevor Story #10 of the Boston Red Sox tosses his bat after striking out in the third inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 09, 2022 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - SEPTEMBER 09: Trevor Story #10 of the Boston Red Sox tosses his bat after striking out in the third inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 09, 2022 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images) /
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Is the Red Sox’s loss of Story a harbinger of things to come?

The Red Sox have their first big hit, and it came in the form of an injury to Trevor Story. Is this the beginning of a Joe Btfsplk season for Red Sox Nation?

Btfsplk, in case you’re unaware, is a character from the L’il Abner comic strip with a perpetual dark cloud hovering around him, symbolizing inevitable bad luck. Or maybe an updated throwback to Seinfield: are we of RSN “doomed”?

In a recent article, I presented my reasoning for why this team will capture the American League East. Like Captain Louis Renault, I was “SHOCKED” by the venomous response on various social media platforms. But like the 2023 Red Sox, I will survive the onslaught.

BSI also provided a list of options the Red Sox could utilize to wash away this latest black cloud of misfortune. A list of potential replacements. Is it possible Story could DH as Shohei Ohtani did during his Tommy John Surgery recovery? Just a thought.

I expected big things from Story, who had respectable pop in his bat and a stellar reputation for defensive play at shortstop. RSN witnessed that defensive acumen when Story switched to second base. Now? Story will have, under the best of conditions, another truncated season.

The Red Sox have had their share of black clouds with signings over the years. Pablo Sandoval, Rusney Castillo, David Price, and the beat goes on as a toss-out to Sonny and Cher. That beat has been an unfortunate part of my Red Sox life. The success of multiple flags spoils the youngins, but we veteran sufferers had experienced decades under that black cloud.

Which pain hurt the most? The small ones, such as Louis Aparicio tripping over third base? Or the massive ones such as Bucky (you know who) Dent, Aaron Boone early in the morning, and the infamous Bill Buckner grounder? This team has provided so many that Boston was under overcast conditions for 86 years.

With misfortune comes opportunity. The opportunity can be internal such as players on the current roster. Can a kid light it up in spring training and catapult into the picture? Is it possible Marcelo Mayer will become Wander Franco? Quite doubtful.

The problem is now Chaim Bloom’s, and Bloom has positioned himself well to deal with roster tragedies. There’s a healthy under-the-cap cushion, the prospect cache is there for a more adventurous excursion for talent, and senior management has finally shown signs of respecting the flagship of Fenway Sports Group.

The difficulty of a black cloud is they invariably have partners in weather patterns. Can Story be a harbinger of more misery in the next few months? Will Chris Sale decide on another bike ride? I’ll stop there since depression is not my idea of a joyful offseason. But tossing the connections of 1918 and 2018 around doesn’t give me a good feeling about this. Is another 86 years in the works?

Naw, it won’t happen, as I’ll remain positive (hopefully).

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