I keep telling myself that it's only been about a week, but that doesn't help. I can see the offense being good(crawford won't hit something like .150 the whole year), but I can't see the pitching being good. For me, Lackey is the worst starter on the team, and Beckett and Buchholz are question marks. Lackey's FIP and xFIP weren't bad last year, but he gave up an enormous amount of baserunners. A 1.50 WHIP is ridiculous ( I think the league average is something like 1.30), which is what he had for most of the year. I can't find the amount of 2Bs he gave up last year, but that number is probably as absurd as the 1.5 WHIP. His stuff looked terrible and it still looks terrible today. If he's gonna pitch like that, then I would make him the long reliever. If he doesn't like it, I don't give a shit. Sure it's a waste of about 20mil, but having him pitch every 5th day isn't helping the club that much. I'd rather see Doubront get experience IF that experience wouldn't hurt his development. Maybe a miracle would happen and somehow we could trade him.
If Buchholz could be a solid #2, I think Beckett may be able to be a solid #3, I haven't seen much of Beckett this year to be confident in that because he's only made one start. At least, IMO, Beckett has much better stuff than Lackey. He may have lost a few mph off of his fastball, but I don't think that will be a huge problem is he can locate like he used to. Against Cleveland, I really liked his change and his curve, but he just didn't have the command, resulting in pitches left up in the zone. If Buchholz could have the same peripherals as last year, I'd feel OK about him, but he's giving up HRs left and right. The ERA most likely wouldn't be the same, but a 2.33 ERA is ridiculous anyway. For the #2 spot, I'd like to see number of runs given up to be in a ERA range of 3.5-3.7. Dice-K is Dice-K. He won’t make or break this team, but the previous 3 players can.
Based on this, I don't see them winning the division or contending for a world series. I'm not even sure if I can see them make the playoffs. This doesn't mean I don't think they can do this, I just don't think it's very likely to happen. It's probably because there is so much uncertainty with these guys. Lackey has never been good with the sox, Beckett hans't been good in over a year, and Buchholz had one good year with not-so-great peripherals. Again, I keep telling myself it's only been 8 games, but I've lost almost all ability to be hopeful about this season.