The early part of the 2012 MLB season has been a bit shaky for Boston’s beloved Red Sox – but this team is still super talented. With a strong second half they should seperate themselves from the small-market preteneders who got hot early. The Sox should still sneak into the playoffs, especially with the added Wild Card slot in effect this year. How can will they get there, you ask?
Wounded Soldiers Returning To Battle
Carl Crawford is making strides in his rehab, working hard to get ready for what we hope is a strong second half. Fellow OF Jacoby ellsbury is also moving towards a return, surely improving the BoSox offense when he does.
Melancon Murking Minor-Leaguers
RP Mark Melancon, who was demoted to Triple-A Pawtucket after a dissapointing start, has been mowing down Minor League hitters in May. If Melcancon gets his confidence back and becomes what Red Sox brass thought he would be, Boston’s bullpen will be much more formidable.
The Evolution of Daniel Bard
Former closer-in-waiting Daniel Bard is adjusting well to his new role as a starter. If Bard continues to improve, he could be one of the best 5th starters in baseball by the end of the season. He certainly has the talent.
Middlebrooks Finding His Role
Much ado has been made about how to play both Youk and Middlebrooks effectively. If Bobby Valentine can use his experience and skill as a manager to properly position these guys for succes, the Sox lineup could be the scariest in the AL once Ellsbury and/or Crawford return.