1. How great will the "Farrell Effect" be?

If you've seen the new Red Sox TV ad, you know how they'd answer this question on Yawkey Way. The ad features a voice-over narration by Farrell, espousing Boston as an "incredible" city, an "incredible" environment and the "epicenter of the game."

The team's new manager then talks about how "everything goes back to how you prepare and how you work," and that the team he inherits has a "core group you can build a very successful team around." He promises fans that they will get "100 percent effort every single day." The ad ends with a shot of Farrell sitting in his office, pledging, "I will work my butt off to earn their respect."

The team's marketers, at least, have made Farrell the axis around which a hoped-for revival in 2013 will revolve. It goes beyond the image-makers. Across the board, player reaction to Farrell's hiring has been enthusiastic, and there is an obvious comfort level between Farrell and general manager Ben Cherington that never existed with Farrell's predecessor, Bobby Valentine.