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Here are my comments (and 2011's Q&A):
1) What was your opinion of the team's offseason?
I'm undoubtedly in the minority, but they did a decent job. No big names, but Cody Ross and Nick Punto can each play a variety of positions. New GM Ben Cherington has stockpiled a bunch of arms for the bullpen and the back of the rotation. And as much as I love and will miss Terry Francona, I have warmed up to the idea of Bobby Valentine as manager.
2) Josh Beckett seems to alternate good years and bad years. Are you worried 2012 will be a down year for him?
No. See #3.
3) Will the collapse of 2011 play any role in the 2012 season?
September 2011 is a distant dot in my rearview mirror, but I know many fans are still angry. The media will giddily stoke those emotions if the team gets off to anything other than a great start. The players, especially Beckett and Jon Lester, should be extremely motivated to atone for their pitching performances in the final month and the beer and chicken stories that came out in October. The collapse should have only a positive effect in 2012.
4) Is there a prospect that will make an impact on the team this season?
I don't think so. Both third baseman Will Middlebrooks and shortstop Jose Iglesias need another year in Pawtucket.
5) Where will the team finish in their division and what are you most excited about for 2012?
If the Red Sox don't improve on last year's 90 wins, I'll be shocked. I say 95 wins and first place (by a whisker) in the East. One poster at Sons of Sam Horn recently said, "The underestimation of this team is staggering." And I agree. At worst, this team has simply moved sideways from 2011, when it began September on track for 100 wins. And it seemed like everyone and his grandmother had picked the 2011 Red Sox to go all the way. They will be in the thick of it all year. Boston had the worst hitting RFers in the AL last year; Ross and Ryan Sweeney should absolutely improve on that. The LFers were (believe it or not) middle of the pack to a bit better than average (5th in avg, 7th in obp, 3rd in slg), and Carl Crawford (whose OBP never topped .300 last year) has got to be more productive this year. Crawford's improvement should offset any decline from Jacoby Ellsbury. Marco Scutaro was a tick above average at shortstop and even if Mike Aviles cannot match Scutaro's production, the lineup is still one of baseball's best. Lester and Beckett return, a healthy Clay Buchholz replaces John Lackey, who had one of the worst seasons of all-time last year. I am most excited to see what Daniel Bard can do in the rotation and I'm extremely curious what Daisuke Matsuzaka will give the team when he returns in late June (or so). This off-season has dragged and dragged - and I am ready for baseball!