The offseason officially began for the Red Sox yesterday, following Sunday’s disappointing loss in game three of the ALDS.
Amalie Benjamin has an extensive look at the issues facing the Red Sox this offseason. The list starts with Jason Bay, who will test the free agent waters in a few weeks. Michael Silverman says that there will be big changes this offseason. Brian MacPherson lists out nine items on Theo Epstein’s plate this offseason. Daniel Barbarisi says that the warning signs for this ending were there all season. Jon Couture says that it is already next year for Red Sox management. Kevin Thomas looks ahead to what the 2010 roster may look like.
Sean McAdam examines the state of the Sox by category. Putting on his GM hat, Bill Burt lists 10 moves he’d make this offseason. Joe McDonald has more on the to-do list for Epstein. Jeff Goldberg has the Sox tasting the bitter pill they have to swallow with the end of the season here earlier than they expected. Bill Ballou has the Sox already looking to the future. Mike Fine has Epstein setting his offseason agenda.
Dan Shaughnessy looks at the futures of the four remaining holdovers from the 2004 championship. Gerry Callahan says that Theo Epstein cannot let his club’s offensive crisis go unsolved. Steve Buckley says that fans have the right to boo Jonathan Papelbon if they want. Bill Reynolds says that hitting, or a lack thereof, was this club’s undoing in the playoffs. Howard Bryant says that the 2003-2007 championship Red Sox are dead and buried, and the team will never quite be the same.
Peter Abraham says that it appears that Clay Buchholz’s place in the stating rotation for 2010 is secure. Fine has Jason Bay looking to see what he will be offered on the free agent market. Kirk Minihane puts together a season-ending report card. Joe Haggerty has Epstein citing team defense as a weakness of the 2009 Sox. Tom Caron wonders if there may be a chance at closer in the offseason.
Silverman looks at how Terry Francona feels health-wise at the end of the season. McDonald looks at Red Sox coaches Brad Mills and Tim Bogar, who are both under consideration for the Houston Astros manager’s job.
The Globe notebook has pitching coach John Farrell expected to remain with the club in 2010. Silverman’s notebook says that the Sox will talk to Jason Varitek about coming back in 2010. The ProJo Red Sox journal says that the Red Sox will be taking a hard line with Daisuke Matsuzaka about his conditioning going into next season. The T&G notebook says that David Ortiz simply looked overmatched in the playoffs.
Nick Cafardo says that it has been easy for the Yankees thus far, who will face their biggest challenge in the Angels.
Patriots and other links coming in separate post.