Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Red Sox Flotsam and Jetsam

Miscellaneous Red Sox thoughts and observations while I try to keep the bad taste of last night's Patriots game out of my mouth.

FWIW - last season there were only 8 MLB 3rd basement who hit 20 or more HR (Edwin Encarnacion, Mark Reynolds and Jedd Gyorko were not primarily 3rd basemen). That's why I feel very comfortable with Will Middlebrooks who is almost a lock for 20+ HR in 2014 and he has 30 HR potential (Bill James has Middlebrooks projected for 32 HR in 2014)... I expect more offense from 3rd base in 2014 than the Red Sox got in 2013. I also expect offensive improvements at short (Xander Bogaerts is just a better hitter than Stephen Drew), and 2nd (Pedrioa played most of the season with a damaged hand that hurt his power). Improvement at those three positions should offset the decline in output at center (Ellsbury tough to replace), 1st (if Mike Napoli signs elsewhere) and catcher (if Jarrod Saltilamacchia signs elsewhere). Basically the offense is in good shape... Speaking of catcher - Alex Speier breaks down the options for the Red Sox. I would expect Boston to offer Saltalamacchia a 3-year $26 million deal maybe with a 4th option year. I'd also be fine with a platoon of Ross and Lavarnway... Red Sox have plenty of money to spend but I wouldn't look for any deals until after the Rule 5 Draft is done...

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