Phil Forecasts Final Finish For Fenway Fans!

Although I’m a BIG Red Sox fan, I honestly don’t take much interest in them until about 2 weeks before the season starts and my season tickets arrive I’ve finally finished my taxes: Sure, I’ll listen to a preseason game or two (or three), but frankly that’s about it until I settle into a seat at Fenway for my first game (I’ll be the one wearing the Red Sox snap back cap and screaming “He couldn’t hit the ground if he fell!”, or something equally annoying yet civil…but, I digress)

Once again my colleague and all-around-cool-guy Phil has approached my with his (apparently yearly) Red Sox prediction, which once again I’m only too glad to write down:

The 2017 Red Sox will win 94 games.

I must say it’s a more conservative prediction compared to his previous and rather ambitious ones (see here and here), but – added bonus! – he’s graciously supplied some justification:

On the negative side, Mitch Moreland, while a nice pickup at 1st base, wasn’t hired as a Big Papi replacement, and Sandy Leon appears to be regressing.

However, E-Rod, Barnes and Kelly look to do better in 2017, and the addition of Chris Sale in the starting rotation is a BIG plus (Ed: Although Phil, for the last 3 years the Sox have had a fantastic rotation on paper, but not so much during the year ;-) And, Andrew Benintendi’s performance last year – despite only playing a partial season – bodes well for 2017, even if he continues to play at his 2016 level.

The wildcard in all of this is Pablo “Panda” Sandoval: If he arrives slimmer, healthier, and more productive then he should – with Benintendi’s and Moreland’s help – make up for Papi’s departure. Basically, the season’s success depends on him.

Well, good luck Phil with your prediction! Now, I’m predicting Punxsutawney Phil won’t see his shadow on February 2: I want to watch some early-season Sox games without my winter gear :-)

Thanks for reading!

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