UNOFFICIAL Pick 5 for the 2023 Red Sox

There is typically an annual tradition within this OTM community where members such as myself try (and fail miserably) to predict 5 players not on the Red Sox roster at the beginning of the offseason who will ultimately end up as members of the 2023 Red Sox on Opening Day. As explained in a previous version of this post, "Players can be free agents (excluding those with options on the Red Sox) or under contract with another team, i.e. trade acquisitions. Once a set of five is posted you cannot chose the same 5 players."

Usually someone else (shoutout OOLF) makes the post, and it's typically much earlier in the offseason, but since I haven't seen it yet, and not much has happened on the free agency/trade markets, with the Winter Meetings coming up, and considering this message board has been dead for a little while, I figured I would give it a whirl.

For the record, I don't think I've ever gotten a single one of these correct. Maybe that means I'm due to get 1-2 right (nobody has ever gotten 3 apparently) or perhaps I'm just jinxing any chance of Chaim Bloom bringing in these players. Either way, I invite you all to join me in guessing which acquisitions are in Boston's near future.

My picks:

  • Xander Bogaerts
  • Will Smith (LH RP, not the Dodgers catcher)
  • Mike Zunino
  • Tyler O'Neill
  • Kodai Senga
Just to be clear, this a predictions list, not a wish list. I'd much rather have Andrew Chafin that Will Smith, Sean Murphy than Zunino, and as much as I love the fit of Mitch Haniger, I don't see it happening. I think there's a trade coming at some point, and the Cardinals appear to have a surplus of young outfielders. Maybe Nick Yorke and Tanner Houck (or preferably some combination of other upper-level pitching prospects; pick 2-3 of Walter/Winkowski/Crawford/Seabold/Murphy/Mata/Ward) could be enough to entice St. Louis to part with a potential 5-tool RH corner outfielder coming off an injury-plagued campaign. The big free agent splash (if you don't count bringing Bogaerts back) is Senga, who won't cost any sort of draft pick compensation or posting fee.

Who do you all see joining the Red Sox this offseason? Include your 5 players plus a brief explanation below in the comments, and please keep it respectful.