Thursday, November 9, 2017

Are The Red Sox Headed Back To A New Mediocrity?

Let's look at some uncomfortable facts. This October, there were previously unheard-of empty seats at Fenway playoff games. There are declining ratings for telecasts on NESN. We've seen two-straight disappointing early departures in the post-season. And, worst of all, there is a terrifying awareness that their rivals in New York are surpassing them in nearly every way. All of these factors (and more) may be conspiring to send your beloved Carmine Hose into a depressing tailspin of mediocrity. There is a growing sense that the "championship window" for this group of players may be extremely short—maybe just a couple of more years. Think about it. Rotation savior Chris Sale can skedaddle out of town after the 2019 season. The group of 'Young Killer Bs' (Xander Bogaerts, Jackie Bradley, Jr., Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi) is rapidly approaching the "Come To Jesus" moment where they will have to be big-time compensated or let go. Chances are the Red Sox will not be able to keep all four. The NOG (New Ownership Group) seems to be resting too much on their Three Ring Legacy—thinking fans will tolerate almost anything as they contemplate the 2004, 2007 and 2013 championships. The problem is we are about to enter the fifth year with no hardware. And most real fans have not forgotten the interregnum wasteland years of: 2012 (69 wins), 2014 (71 wins) and 2015 (78 wins). The natives have long memories—and they are getting restless again. As well they should.