Where Red Sox Land In ESPN’s Way-Too-Early 2022 MLB Power Rankings

Tampa Bay leads the power rankings


Nov 3, 2021

The Boston Red Sox exceeded all expectations but their own in 2021. So you can bet next year, they’ll have a lot more pressure on them.

Boston finished the 2021 regular season 92-70 with a deep run all the way to the American League Championship Series after being projected to finish last in the AL East. Instead, they were the last team standing in the division, against all odds.

ESPN didn’t quite put the Red Sox on that trajectory while looking ahead to next season, but ranked them No. 8 in their way-too-early Major League Baseball power rankings. Here’s what they wrote:

The offense should be in fine shape with Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, J.D. Martinez, Alex Verdugo and Bobby Dalbec (.955 OPS in the second half). The Red Sox will also have a full season of Chris Sale in the rotation. The bullpen could use a couple of more reliable arms, and we’ll see whether Enrique Hern├índez (4.9 WAR) and Hunter Renfroe (2.4 WAR) can repeat their strong 2021 performances. One thing that could create a domino effect this offseason: Do they want to stick with Bogaerts at shortstop and Devers at third? Both are below average on defense — and remember that Bogaerts has an opt-out clause after 2022, and it appears certain he’ll exercise it. They could move Bogaerts to third and Devers to first and look to trade Dalbec or even look to trade Bogaerts for pitching/prospects depth.

Not bad.

Especially with so many moving parts left to be settled before next season. But we look forward to Boston blowing these expectations out of the water as well come Feb. 14 when pitchers and catchers report.

ESPN had the Tampa Bay Rays, Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros topping the charts.

Thumbnail photo via Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports Images
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