Because Steve Phillips predicts they will finish third.
phillips is a boob, on that we agree paul…personally, i like the sox chances, although i don’t like to say it out loud…on the other hand the “phillip’s curse” may just mean good news for toronto…just kidding…it’ll be a close race, with the whole thing boiling down to pitching…again…sox appear to have better starters going in, and the yanks appear to have a better bullpen…
Th curious thing is not that Philips picks them third, which isn’t unreasonable, but that he picks them to go 82-80, 4 games WORSE than last year. Admittedly, the division is improved from last year, perhaps the whole league is improved, but the Sox are certainly better than tney were. It’s hard to see them fight to stay above .500, as he suggests. Lacks credibility.
Joe Sheehan isn’t too high on the Sox either:
“#6: Boston Red Sox, 86-76, second in AL East, 816 RS, 764 RA. Every time this looks inadequate, I just remind myself that it’s 57-run swing over last season, which is a big bounce. The Sox, of course, made big moves, adding Daisuke Matsuzaka, J.D. Drew and Julio Lugo. They also return, however, many of the aging hitters who contributed to last year’s terrible second half. I’m not sure what the Sox expect to get from the 6-9 slots, but it won’t be championship-caliber performance. The bullpen—and I’ll be the first to defend the nonclosercentric approach—is a work in progress even with Jonathan Papelbon now pitching the ninth inning of games where the Sox lead by three or less regardless of who’s batting for the opposition. I liked them better when he was throwing 180 innings. The ghost of 2003 hangs heavy over this decision; does anyone remember just how awesome that bullpen was by the end of the year, though?”
He has the Yanks as the best team by a pretty wide margin. #2 is the Tribe, #3: the D-Backs. The Sox fall in at #6, which I think it enough to make the wild card actually.
I’m a Yanks fan, but I found myself disagreeing with much of Sheehan’s reasoning in his very fun 30 team countdown. He has the Brew Crew in the lower rung, for instance.
not sure why I felt the need to let you all know that I’m a Yanks fan.
Well, it’s been pretty uncloear here for a while, Nick :-P
Or unclear. Whatever.
Yeah, the big thing about Steve “There’s no chance the Sox will sign Matsuzaka” Phillips’ prediction is the 82-80 record. But that didn’t really fit the format I was going for in the post. Hehe
For those of you living in the Boston area, the Sox have to win because if they do, the furniture my wife and I just bought is free from Jordan’s Furniture.
(For those of you who haven’t cashed in yet, the contest runs til mid April.)
Sorry about the crass commercialism.
I just re-read the heading — in order to win the free furniture, the Sox have to win the World Series, not just the East.
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