Sox hope to start season strong for a change

Sox hope to start season strong for a change
February 29, 2012, 8:27 pm
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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- In each of the last two seasons, the Red Sox have started poorly, putting them behind in the American League standings from the start.

In 2010, the Sox were 11-12 in April and at one point were 6-10.

Last year, of course, was much worse, as the Sox went winlessin their first six games and dropped to 2-10 before starting to turn it around. They finished April at 11-15 and didn't get tothe .500 mark until the middle of May.

New manager Bobby Valentine has been working the Sox morediligently than did his predecessor, Terry Francona, but Valentinesaid Wednesday it's hard to predict how a team will start the regular season.

"I think sometimes (early-season results) are random,'' he said."Sometimes it's health, sometimes it's competition. It's pretty tough competition out of the chute this year, I guarantee you that. Sometimes it's weather."I've seen guys and teams hot as firecracker in spring (training), then start off slow and (I've seen) just the opposite.''

Valentine said the drills he's putting his team through and the preparation work they're undergoing now doesn't necessarily guarantee a good start.

"I think preparation deals with the entire season,'' he said."Wins and losses, at any segment of the season, I think, are random.You're going to be hot and cold at different points in the season.''