In ESPN.com’s American League East preview, the Red Sox are projected to finish in last place in the division for a second straight season.
ESPN Insider Dan Szymborski and ESPN The Mag’s Tim Kurkjian combined to come up with each team’s best- and worst-case scenarios. Here they are for the Red Sox:
* Best case -- 93 wins: If new manager John Farrell mends clubhouse relations, a revitalized Jon Lester and a revamped pen (Joel Hanrahan and Koji Uehara averaged 10-plus K/9 in 2012) form the pitching core, and Will Middlebrooks' bat provides pop.
Meanwhile, former Sox pitcher and current ESPN analyst Curt Schilling makes a case for the Red Sox to win the AL East in the video below:
And finally, here are the projections for the AL East using Szymborski’s ZiPS projection system, in which seasons are simulated a million times using a Monte Carlo method:
Where do you think the Red Sox will finish in the AL East? Vote in the poll above and share your thoughts in the comments section.