15 Mar 2016
As camp progresses for the Red Sox, there are some major sources of pain, or at least potential pain.
Pablo Sandoval: No surprise here but he showed up in poor shape. His fielding was poor last year and he had to abandon hitting from the right side. And his hitting from the left side (.744 OPS) wasn’t worth nearly as much as he is being paid. If Sandoval can’t figure it out, the Red Sox can use Travis Shaw at 3b.
Hanley Ramirez: After failing as an outfield last year, the Red Sox are trying to spin the idea of Hanley being a good candidate for first base. It seems to make sense that a former shortstop could handle this roll but we are talking about Hanley Ramirez, the first baseman who showed up to camp without any first base gloves. I know the idea here is to bridge the 2016 season and slot Ramirez into the DH spot once David Ortiz retires, but if he fails as a 1b, then that will essentially be 2 lost seasons on his 4 year deal.
Rusney Castillo: This is his 3rd season in pro ball and I sure hope he figures things out, he’s being paid to do so after all. Castillo posted a .647 OPS in 289 plate appearances last season, not what we were hoping for but perhaps understandable for someone who was facing major league pitching for the first time aside from 10 games in 2014. 2016 is a big year for him, he needs to prove he can hit.
John Farrell: First off, I’m very happy to learn Farrell is cancer free and his health isn’t an issue. That said, he hasn’t done a very good job of late while managing the Red Sox. When he took his leave of absence last year and Torey Lovullo took over, the team played much differently. Farrell went 50-63, Lovullo 28-21. Add to that the recent distraction of a local tv personality resigning her post when it came to light she and Farrell were involved. Nothing against love, but if the players sense any resentment or feel there was a mole when it came to her reporting, that can’t be a good thing. I wish them nothing but happiness but Farrell caused a major distraction for himself and his players. He is on a very short leash, should he stumble out of the gate, he’ll get the boot from above.