Remarkably, the Boston Red Sox entered the final week of the 2015 season not yet mathematically eliminated from the playoff race. Realistically, they’ve been out of it for months. Yet it’s impressive that a group of young prospects has banded together to play inspired baseball over the final weeks of the year.

The Sox wrapped up their home schedule over the weekend by not allowing a run to Baltimore. Once again, the prospects were leading the way. On Sunday, Blake Swihart hit a home run, Xander Bogaerts had two hits and Henry Owens shut out the Orioles through 72/3 innings. The win improved Boston’s record to 25-16 since Aug. 14.

That was the day another prospect got a starting position.

Torey Lovullo has dreamed of being a big-league manager. Over the past six weeks he has gotten a chance to live out that dream, holding the position with the Red Sox on an interim basis while John Farrell undergoes treatment for cancer.

Lovullo has been careful to remind everyone that this is Farrell’s job and that he is just filling in for him on a temporary basis. On the road, Lovullo does not use the manager’s office for his postgame discussions with the media. He does not, for a second, believe this is his job permanently.

He has also proven he should be managing a big-league team somewhere next season. His young team has played the role of spoiler – winning 4 of 6 games against Toronto – and it could do so this week at Yankee Stadium. He has allowed pitchers to go deep into games, building both arm strength and confidence as the season has progressed.

It’s been a learning process, to be sure. And Lovullo has been acing the test.

“I learned that the manager has a lot of responsibilities behind the scenes that could easily cause a distraction,” Lovullo said. “I learned that 7 (p.m.) is my favorite part of the day. And there’s nothing against all the prep work and all the postgame work – it’s part of the job that John has. He made it look pretty easy. And I just want (to make it) exactly clear as to how challenging that could be.

“It’s tough to manage your time. You have to be disciplined in where you need to get to and what you’re trying to accomplish each and every day. But it’s been great. It’s been a great learning experience for me.”

Lovullo could be a hot commodity when the season ends, and he could make for a tricky situation for Dave Dombrowski, the new president of baseball operations. While Farrell continues his cancer treatment, the Sox will have to decide who should manage the team in 2016. Will they bring Farrell back to the dugout, or will they go in a new direction? If they make a change, would they give Lovullo a chance to manage full time?

It’s clear Lovullo’s time has come. Like so many of his players, he has shown he’s ready for prime time. The only question is whether he’ll be managing in Boston or elsewhere.

Tom Caron is a studio host for the Red Sox broadcast on NESN. His column appears in the Portland Press Herald on Tuesdays.