In the season review edition of 3 up, 3 down, Jessica Moran looks back at the 2012 Red Sox.
With the way this season played out, you can be sure it was easy three downs. The hard part was picking just three. So Jessica Moran found a way around that.
The first down goes to the starting pitchers who finished the season with a franchise-high 5.19 ERA. The Big Three of Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz and Josh Beckett combined for a 22-33 record.
Next in line is Bobby Valentine who was fired after leading the Red Sox to a 69-93 record, their worst record since 1965. The team nosedived after the All-Star Break, limping to the finish with a 26-50 record in the second half of the season.
And finally, the ownership group. The franchise missed the playoffs for the third straight season and finished dead last in the A.L. East.
But there were some success stories hidden way WAY underneath all the ugly candy coating.
David Ortiz put together one of his best seasons before succumbing to injuries. In 90 games, Ortiz finished with a .318 average, 23 home runs and 60 RBI, putting up his best OPS since 2007.
Rookie third baseman Will Middlebrooks was a revelation with his power stroke before the injury bug prematurely ended his season as well.
In 75 games, Middlebrooks pounded 15 homers and the second best slugging percentage on the team.
And finally, Cody Ross, who finished third on the team with 22 home runs while tallying 81 RBI. He also crushed left-handed pitching, to the tune of a .636 slugging percentage.