Jacoby Ellsbury Belongs Back in Leadoff Spot While Red Sox Figure Out Other Areas of Their Roster
Pitchers and catchers are set to report following week following an offseason in which the Red Sox stayed away from some of the bigger-name totally free agents. As a result, the Red Sox enter spring education with numerous query places, ranging from the back end of the rotation to platoons at shortstop and catcher. New manager Bobby Valentine also faces the challenge of finding both Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford playing to their possible in 2012.
With Jacoby Ellsbury’s new residence-run power, does it make sense to lead off with Carl Crawford when he returns and bat Ellsbury in the third or fifth spot in the lineup?
– Bruce, Cheshire, Conn.
I would leave Jacoby at the leading of the purchase. I hear you on the home run totals from last year. I just like his speed and capability to get on at the leading. I am reasonably positive you will not begin the season with Carl Crawford healthful and it is not a secure spot for Carl when he comes back, or ever in the past. I also think there is a lot of thump that previously exists in the middle of your purchase. I believe Ellsbury is 1 of the finest lead off males in the game since of all he is capable of performing. I leave him wherever he is.
If Daniel Bard or Alfredo Aceves becomes a starter, will the Red Sox restrict their innings at the end of the season due to their background of staying relievers?
– Marsha, Hopedale, Mass.
I would think that extra days would be constructed in for the duration of the year to support that approach. I am sort of surprised that they are going in this direction with Daniel Bard. He is guy who has maxed out on 69 innings in the past and now will be asked to potentially jump upwards to 150 to 200. I also consider you made an extremely robust location, the eighth inning, weaker by moving him to the rotation. There is a great unknown with Bard in that his MLB accomplishment is as a reliever. His past in the minors as a starter points in a distinct course. He will answer a lot of these concerns early in spring, but I will be curious to see if his 98 mph fastball is significantly less as he paces himself early in games as a starter and if he will use his 3rd pitch, his changeup, more typically. I consider Aceves is greater equipped to handle the workload over the long haul.
Who do you believe will play much more at shortstop this season, Nick Punto or Mike Aviles?
-– Brenden, Raynham, Mass.
Whoever establishes themselves in spring instruction will turn out to be the typical shortstop. I consider this will be enjoyable this spring. Extremely seldom in the 11 preceding springs that I have been a portion of has there been any type of competition for jobs. It looks every year that the group is complete prior to we leave for Fort Myers. This year is an exception to that in numerous places. Not only will players be fighting for jobs, they will also be attempting to impress their new manager. It’s all new and distinct. If I had to pick right now, I would say Mike Aviles could have the edge. I am a large Nick Punto fan, however, obtaining watched him more than the a long time in Minnesota. His capability to move all around helps make him a excellent candidate to be the utility guy.
Hi Don, will we lastly get to see Ryan Lavarnaway start off to play a role on the main league club this season? I thought he showed a lot of guarantee final year, and his arm seemed to be as great — if not better — than anything on the roster?
– Jim, St. Cloud, Fla.
I consider we will, but not initially. I feel he will commence the year in Triple-A with the PawSox and make his way up as the season progresses. I think you have a excellent tandem in Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Kelly Shoppach to start the year. I was very impressed with Lavarnway last year and his bat really stands out, especially from a power standpoint. I feel his catching capabilities will continue to develop and it will be something to maintain an eye on as the Triple-A season begins.
Is Jose Iglesias prepared to hit key league pitching but? Or are the Red Sox truly content to play the total season with a platoon of utility infielders?
– Craig Turcotte, by means of Facebook
By all accounts, is he prepared to hit at the key league degree? No. Even so, I am not certain you truly need to have him too. His fielding talents have been main league ready for the previous number of seasons. Many scouts have compared him to Rey Ordonez, formerly of the Mets. I had the chance to see Ordonez on a everyday basis in Double-A Binghamton, and if Iglesis is anywhere close to as excellent, the Red Sox have something really particular. I think he will commence in Triple-A and this platoon will start the year in Boston.