Friday, March 25, 2016

Joshua Berube Visits Section 36!

Section 36 is fortunate enough to have another visitor! With the baseball season almost upon us, I thought is would be a good time to discuss the season. I asked Joshua Berube of The All Out Sports Network (AOSN) to help me out. Since he just finished writing a series of articles previewing each team in the AL East and NL East, I felt he could offer some great insight for us. Thankfully, he was nice enough to answer some questions about the 2016 Red Sox. With that, let's see what happens when Joshua Berube visits Section 36!

In Section 36 we love our centerfielders. Who will I be seeing in that position most, and what can I expect from him?
In CF, I think this will be Jackie Bradley, Jr’s breakout season. Obviously I believe Section 36 fans will be seeing #25. However, I think we might at times see Mookie Betts patrolling center as well.

What will happen with Hanley Ramirez at first base?
Joshua Berube
As much as I have lamented the unknown of Hanley Ramirez at first and his offensive decline, I like what I have seen thus far and believe he is actually enjoying it. I believe he will be adequate and can definitely post offensive numbers somewhere between the likes of Mo Vaughn and Mike Napoli we enjoyed in the past.

Will Dustin Pedroia do more than give reporters good quotes?
I am not worried about Pedroia. I think he will continue his gold glove and reckless abandon ways both in the field as well as at the plate.

Who will have the better year, Mookie Betts or Xander Bogaerts?
Betts and Bogaerts (who won a silver slugger award) both had excellent years last year, and what a bargain for the Sox at a combined salary of just over $1 million. I think Mookie Betts has the better year. I expect Betts to top all of his numbers from last year and be a 25/25 guy while hitting .310. I am not sure Bogaerts’s average will be as high as last year but will be a double play machine up the middle with Pedroia. The Sox sure found a couple gems.

Does Rick Porcello show his potential this season?
I do not know if Porcello shows his potential. I mean, I would think he has to be better than last year’s 9-15, 4.92 ERA. I am actually more intrigued with Joe Kelly who is having a fantastic spring and see if he can start 2016 where he left off 2015. Also, I am a huge Buchholz fan. I expect a huge year out of him being a contract year.. When he is on, his stuff is unhittable.

Joshua's Red Sox article
Where does Brock Holt find at-bats?
When I see Brock Holt, I can only think of the Warner Bros. Bugs Bunny cartoon Baseball Bugs. (You can find it here: He played seven positions last year save for pitcher and catcher. He is the ultimate utility player. I think he will get at bats due to his versatility, giving guys days off here and there in the outfield and infield. Although, barring injuries, I see him playing substantially less than the 100-plus games he saw the last two seasons.

Will David Ortiz go out with a bang?
I have the Sox winning the East. In order for that to happen, Ortiz will have to be his usual productive self, hitting 30HR and driving 100 RBI's. I am interested to see his reception in Yankee stadium as part of the farewell tour. I can see him hitting a walk off home run in the playoffs but not sure the World Series is in the cards.

How will Rusney Castillo react with the job handed to him?
I am not sure Castillo has been handed the job, as it were.  I think his leash will be short. Young and Murphy are serviceable outfielders. Although, I think there is tremendous upside.

How will David Price perform with his monster deal behind him?
Price is saying all the right things. He is coming off a fantastic year (18-5 2.45 ERA) where he split it between two teams in Detroit and Toronto. We know he can pitch in the AL East. I think he will be a steadying and calming influence to the rest of the rotation. Yes, he signed a huge contract but he has not won the ultimate prize yet and knows what it is like to lose in the World Series. I think he's hungry and the ultimate competitor, two things that will endear him to the Red Sox faithful.

Will Craig Kimbrel adjust to the AL?
I address my concerns with Kimbrel coming to the AL in my article. He is going to pitch half his games in a bandbox known as Fenway, which concerns me a bit, as he pitched in a lot of pitcher friendly ballparks. In addition, the market in Boston is like nowhere else as far as expectations and pressure fans and media place on the team. We will see soon enough if he thrives in the baseball-crazy town. However, Koji is there for safety.


Well, I certainly hope he thrives!

As always, a huge thank you to Joshua for visiting. It's always nice to hear what others have to say, and he did a great job giving his views.

If you want to see more of Joshua, especially his baseball previews, check out his articles at AOSN and follow him on twitter! I can't wait to see what he'll have to say as the season goes on.

Thanks again Joshua!

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