Yup. Today is the final day this season that the Red Sox will be reigning World Champions.
It a little sad, and a little exciting. Sure, it’s sad because you’d prefer they were still “defending” World Champions. But, alas, a title defense was not in the cards. Things never seemed to get going the way they needed to. We all kept waiting for everything to click into place, but it never did. Once the team was sure of that, they threw in the towel. Hit the do-over button and cut their losses. While it was a smart move, it did not make for exciting September baseball. Which means it’s been a while since the Red Sox have been playing games that mean anything. I definitely preferred the last World Series to this one, for that very reason.
It’s also very exciting. Although by the end of the night they will have lost their crown, they can finally start the process of getting it back. Since we all now know that going from worst to first is possible, it’s exciting to be able to get to see them try again.
What will they do? Who will they sign? Who will they trade? Who will be left? What will the team look like?
All those questions can start to be answered as soon as the World Series concludes. Red Sox fans can stop slogging through a lost season, and start ramping up for the next one. With so many spare parts, this has to be one of the most interesting off-seasons in recent memory. The have to make at least one big trade, just to clear room on the roster. They’ll need to sign a free agent or two, just to fill holes.
They’ll need to decide on a direction for the team. Is this a full-blown youth movements with all the warts that come with it? They could certainly do that. Start a rookie or second year player at about six starting positions, and trade away some veterans. There may be some bumps along the way, but it could be interesting. Or, trade away most of the youth for a veteran team that would be very competitive right now, if not for the long haul. Or a combination of the two with so youth, and experience combined into a single unit.
I can’t wait to see which direction they choose. And it all starts after game seven is over.