As we sit with roughly 2 1/2 weeks left to play in 2016, the Boston Red Sox sit atop the AL East and look capable of a deep postseason run -- if they can actually make the playoffs through the insane AL race -- thanks to a wrecking crew of an offense and a rotation that is really rounding into shape behind a pair of aces. Yes, two.

What a difference one year makes, huh? Let's take a quick walk back through time.

Remember the 2014 Winter Meetings? I, an Indiana boy, was in San Diego in December, so I'll surely never forget. Those meetings were the ones where the Cubs landed Jon Lester on a six-year, $155 million deal. This is pertinent because the Red Sox lost out on Lester and then instead went with a "no aces" plan for their rotation heading into 2015.

Through some trades, free agent signings and roster retention, former GM Ben Cherington's "win with a bunch of twos and threes" approach gave the Red Sox an opening day rotation of Clay Buchholz, Rick Porcello, Justin Masterson, Wade Miley and Joe Kelly.