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BOSTON (CBS) – After a last-place finish in the AL East in 2012, will the Red Sox be at the bottom of the division again in 2013?
Gresh, Zo & Shaughnessy were joined by CBSSports’ baseball insider Jon Heyman on Tuesday to determine just that.
The Red Sox have made some moves this off-season, but the Toronto Blue Jays have completely changed their team and — at least for right now on paper — look to be a powerhouse in the division.
So are the Red Sox destined to finish fifth in the AL East again?
“It’s early in the process here, and you never know what can happen. They are in the toughest division, so I’m not sure (who they would finish ahead of),” Heyman said. “Toronto has gone out and, first, took all the good players on the Marlins and added an ace on top of that (in RA Dickey). The Yankees are basically the Yankees, except A-Rod is now really an old man. Baltimore really had a great year; I don’t know if people think they can do it again or not, but a case can be made that they’ll be decent. And Tampa is always good; they always have the pitching.”
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“So at this juncture if someone wants to tell me (the Red Sox) are the fifth best team, I can see it,” said Heyman. “They’re not a bad team, but in this division I could see people picking them fifth.”
Boston reportedly signed shortstop Stephan Drew to a one-year, $9.5 million deal to be a stopgap at short for 2013. Coming from the Drew family, many feel that Stephen is a lot like his brother J.D. when it comes to injuries – including Diamondbacks owner Ken Kendrick, who said the following about Drew back in June as the shortstop came back from a broken ankle suffered in July of 2011:
“You know, I’m going to be real direct about Stephen. I think Stephen should have been out there playing before now. And, frankly, I for one am disappointed. I’m going to be real candid and say I think Stephen and his representatives are more focused on where Stephen is going to be a year from now than going out and supporting the team that’s paying his salary. All you can do is hope that the player is treating the situation with integrity, and, frankly, we have our concerns.”
Should Red Sox fans be concerned about this?
“I think his reputation is OK,” Heyman said of Drew. “Ken Kendrick can be an emotional guy. A nice fellow, but he’s been known to say a thing or two and I’m sure he was frustrated.”
“That injury was quite gruesome, so I don’t think it was shocking it took a while,” added Heyman (watch the injury here, but be warned it’s not pleasant). “Beyond that one injury he hasn’t had the variety of injuries his brother did. Stephen really had that one injury and the owner got upset, but his reputation — besides that quote — is pretty good.”
Also, what is Heyman hearing about the Mike Napoli contract snag? And will Ryan Dempster be OK pitching in the American League?