23 Feb 2015
Many sources are reporting that the Red Sox have signed the latest Cuba amateur player offering his services to the highest bidder. 19-year old Yoan Moncada, an infielder, was highly sought after and one NL Scout, per ESPN’s reporting, told Jerry Crasnick that Moncada would go 1/1 if the draft were held today. And a report says he immediately becomes the best Red Sox prospect and number 10 overall in baseball per Baseball America. Wow, that is good to hear for Red Sox fans. Reports are that it is a $30m deal minor league deal meaning he’ll start the season in the minors.
What is interesting is that Moncada plays SS and the Red Sox have their infield set with Napoli at first, Pedroia at second, Sandoval at third and Bogaerts at SS. Where will they play him, even if he does start the year in the minors? It is with some sadness that I say if you made me decide today, I’d have to strongly consider moving Dustin Pedroia. Now I realize it is never wise to bet against him as he has always overcome doubters but the fact is he has declined offensively 4 years running with his OPS dropping from .861 in 2011 to a .713 last season. His contract is relatively modest and could probably be moved without too much trouble. He is 31 and at his own admission has been injured for the past 2 seasons, but he is also quick to point out he has never felt better.
At some point, Ben Cherington will have to make a few difficult decisions to free up the logjam both in the infield and in the outfield. These are good problems to have mind you but as a player, it might be an anxious time trying to figure out where the playing time might come.