It’s Opening Day, which marks the return of Major League Baseball. And while excitement is brewing, Red Sox fans are split on how well they think the team will do this season.
The Sox are entering their fourth year with chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom at the helm and right now there are many questions about the team’s strategy and future.
In order to predict where the team is heading, sports reporter Alex Speier took a deep dive into the Red Sox’s transformation over the last few years. In addition to his analysis, we asked our readers to tell us their predictions for the Red Sox’s 2023 season.
Here’s what they had to say:
“It will be another struggle to get to .500 this season. They may have a good two- to three- week run early in the season, raising hopes, but they simply are too thin and too weak up the middle. Hard to imagine Chris Sale, Kikee, and Arroyo not breaking down - repeatedly. I really hope I’m wrong, but it looks like a 77-85 finish. And that’s not worth the price of an MLB-TV subscription.”
“Much as I love my Sox, starting with YAZ’s Cardiac Kids of 1967, I’m afraid this team will finish in last place in the Eastern Division for the 6th time out of the last 12 years, and for the 3rd time under Bloom’s 4 year tenure. I have two predictions for the 2023 season: 78- 84 record, and Bloom finally being asked to leave at the end of this season.”
“Sox are betting heavily on older players, long shots (Sale, Kluber, Turner, Duval), unknown quantity (Yoshida) and new untested youngsters ( Casas, Crawford, Bello). Starting pitching is questionable over the long term, catchers are very average, and defense looks to be below average (especially with little speed in the outfield and average arms). Sox somehow finish at 82-80, but miss payoffs.”
“They are slowly improving. I think 82-87 wins. In contention for a wild card, but likely fall short.”
“I expect pitching will be their undoing. Starters and middle relievers are either delicate or unproven. Last place in the AL East seems probable unless the Orioles are truly awful.”
“75 wins is the max for 2023.”
“Can’t see this team doing much better than 75 wins. With older players, expect injuries. Sale, Paxton, Kluber Duvall, Turner will miss games with injuries. How many is the question. Crawford, Winckowski, Pivetta, Brasier, and Ort do not appear capable of being game changers for a team that expects to make the playoffs. Bello has promise -- is he ready to win 15 games? Ditto Whitlock and Houck. Much depends on older retreads such as Jansen, Duvall, and Turner. It’s difficult to be optimistic, except I believe Casas and Yoshida will hit and help win games. The catching will likely be an issue, although Reese McGuire did well at the end of last season.”
“The team is super strong up the middle, and the starting pitching looks solid. I’m predicting over 100 wins and a world series. Not sure about the win in the world series though, the Rockies will be tough to beat.”
“Red Sox fan for over 70 years. I predict a very mediocre team and bad to watch, many blown saves, and loses due to lack of hitting. I am sad to predict this. but 76 wins, no playoffs and a battle for next to the last place.”
“Besides wins and losses Sox also need to deal with some optical issues Ditch the grocery cart routine after every home run once for all. Also ditch the Marathon themed uni’s, they are dreadful. Now for record on the field; 80 wins.”
“This 2023 team will also struggle, such that a .500 season is about as good as it will get. I also think the potential for the team to do worse than .500 is MUCH greater than its potential to reach the postseason.”
“Without late season major additions, I see 80-85 wins, and they sneak into the playoffs if things break their way. This could also end up being a team with fantastic chemistry, and heart could carry them a bit further.”
“Anything can, of course, happen, but I’d be very surprised if the Sox end the season above .500 and no better than fourth in the AL East.”
“A lot depends on good health throughout the season. Without that, and steady pitching, they are looking at last place. I’ll say 80–82.”
“75-87. Horrible starting pitching, a bullpen not nearly as good as what was spent on it, and maybe the worst up the middle catcher-second-shortstop-centerfield combination in my 56 years as a Sox fan.”
“I tend to agree with most here that the Sox will be lucky to be over .500, though I acknowledge the off chance that all the upside pieces fall into place for a team that has no serious injury issues and they secure a playoff spot. Remote, but possible.”
“This year will be entertaining, maybe 85 wins or so, but 2024 is when things should really move.”
“I think the Sox will hold their own, just above 500 until after the All Star break. By then they will have broken down rehabbing senior citizen pitching, and be squashed by the good teams they play in August and September. 73 wins.”
“82-80, last place.”
“My prediction? They have about a 50% chance at a wild card. If the team as a whole, like it did in 2018, manages to stay healthy...”
“Maybe 80 wins. Starting pitching is a huge question mark, with a mix of veterans squeezing the last few pitches out of their arms & youngsters still figuring it out. Defense is embarrassingly weak up the middle, from unproven catchers to a SS who has never really been a SS & a CF who hasn’t been a CF. Throw in an injury prone vet at 2B. Yikes. Lots of sloppy innings early & not enough offense to compensate.”
“75 wins at most. I hope I’m wrong.”
“Been watching since 1962. I die with every loss. I sigh in relief with every win. I’ve been to every World Series game since 1975. I died with them in 75 and 86. I whooped it up in 04, 07, 13, 18. This team isn’t even in the same solar system as any of those teams. But they’ve got some talent and a good manager. If they stick around Bloom will get help. Then, like in 2021, who knows? Prediction: 88-74.”
“Same as the Sox of 1963, 76 wins 85 losses (probably a rainout they won’t bother making up). "
“They’re gonna start off decent. Sometime in July, Chris Sale is gonna get injured which begins their decline. The bats get cold, the players start to care less, more losses pile up and the glaring holes in the roster show themselves.”
“Gonna surprise a lot of people. Anywhere between 82-90 wins wouldn’t shock me.”
“75 wins, maybe, if they stay healthy.”
“I think it’ll be pretty good...compared to last year.”
How well do you think the Red Sox will do this season? Join the conversation by leaving a comment below.
Jenna Reyes can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @jennaelaney and Instagram @jennaelaney.