Boston Red Sox Rumors: 5 Top Offseason Questions
Here Are Boston Red Sox' 5 Burning Offseason Questions
The Boston Red Sox have had one of their most successful seasons in a long time. After an awful September collapse in 2011 and dealing with the walking carnival sideshow that defines Bobby Valentine last year, 2013 has to feel like a huge breath of fresh air for Red Sox Nation. It seems extremely likely at this point that Boston is going to the postseason and could potentially end up winning their division. If you notice, as a diehard Red Sox fan, I always am cautious about these things and 2011 has made me even more cautious. However the way that they are playing recently, they could go deep in October as they are getting hot at just about the right moment.
Once this season ends, this is a team that has a lot to be thinking about and a lot of decisions to make. One great asset that this organization has is that has a very deep farm system and there are quality prospects that are constantly working their way up to the majors. Ben Cherington and his people have a lot of decisions to make and some of them are not easy ones. This was originally supposed to be more of a bridge year than anything else and now you have the best Boston team that we have seen in about five years. The surprising quality of play of this team during this particular season has forced Cherington's hand to make some decisions perhaps a little sooner than he thought. Here are five offseason questions that Boston needs to answer.
5. Trade John Lackey?
John Lackey, even though his record hasn't reflected it, has pitched the best that he has in a Red Sox uniform. At times, he has looked absolutely dominating. If he had a lot more run support, his record would show how good he has been. Boston needs to figure out if they keep him or do they trade him with all these flamethrowers such as Brandon Workman and Drake Britton primed and ready to start?
4. Resign Stephen Drew?
Stephen Drew has gotten a bad rap since he got into town just because of his last name. However, he has been hitting much more consistently over the last few months and has had some huge clutch hits. He has been spectacular in the field all season long. He is signed to a one-year deal. Do they keep him or let him sign elsewhere with uber-prospect Xander Bogaerts ready?
3. Resign Mike Napoli to a multi-year contract?
Mike Napoli has been streaky for most of the season but when he is hot, he can carry the ball club. He has also been decent at first base. He is another player who is signed to a one-year deal. Will Boston bring him back or will some other team swoop in and give him the years he is looking for?
2. Bring back Joel Hanrahan and Andrew Bailey?
The Red Sox have two All-Star closers in Joel Hanrahan and Andrew Bailey. Both had season-ending injuries. With the incredible season of Koji Uehara, does it make any sense bringing either of these guys back? Or do you worry about Uehara's age and durability handling closing over an entire season?
No. 1 Question: Does Jacoby Ellsbury Come Back?
Finally, the one question that most of Red Sox Nation is wondering is the future of Jacoby Ellsbury. He will be a free agent at the end of this season. He is injured right now but has played very well for most of the season. With another young prospect ready to go in Jackie Bradley Jr., should Boston break the bank to sign Ellsbury? There you go. Five questions that Boston needs to answer during the winter. Stay tuned for my five answers to these questions.