The Red Sox enter their final home series of the season tonight against Tampa Bay with a solid chance to finish in the bottom third of the standings, capping off one of the most disappointing years in franchise history considering spring expectations, theoretical talent level and the recent success of the team over the past 10 years.
However, there is still some losing to be done if they are to secure a coveted top 10 selection (“protected” even if the team signs a Type A free agent). The Sox essentially have to finish inside the bottom nine teams listed above or worse since Pittsburgh is locked into the No. 9 position after failing to sign 2011 first-round selection, Mark Appel.
(As WEEI’s Alex Speier pointed out, the last time the Sox picked anywhere near this high in a draft, they selected Nomar Garciaparra at No. 12 in 1994.)
Elsewhere, Sox fans might take some Schadenfreude in the fact that Theo Epstein’s Chicago Cubs have played well enough in recent weeks to let the Colorado Rockies (losers of nine of their last 10) back into the picture for the second pick in the draft.
These are indeed dark, dark days. Eight games to go and counting down…