Time For The Boston Red Sox To Do Something With Third Baseman Pablo Sandoval
Boston Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval came into spring training last season fat and out of shape, now over a year later Sandoval has worked back into shape and Boston has tried to get him going with plenty of playing time. But this hasn’t worked, Sandoval hasn’t helped the team win games and for this years squad, they need a productive third basemen.
Since returning to Boston Sandoval has appeared in 25 games with 95 plate appearances and has only managed a .616 OPS. The most troubling part of his time has been his defense, which he has a minus-6 DRS which means his defense has cost Boston six runs in only 25 games of play.
In three seasons in Boston he has only managed a .236 avg with a measly .646 OPS and has missed a total of 232 games compared to the 154 he has played in. Right now on the roster Red Sox manager John Farrell has better options at his disposal than Sandoval. Deven Marrero is an excellent defensive third baseman and Josh Rutledge is a capable fielder and a capable hitter. The Red Sox have had to carry all three on the roster because of the deficiencies that Sandoval has had.
There has many rumblings of a potential outright to AAA-Pawtucket via the way of Allen Craig or Rusney Castillo to get his salary off the luxury cap. Issue with that is Sandoval has over 5 years of MLB experience which means he would have to agree to such a move. Other talk on Sandoval has been the idea of a trade where Boston would likely have to eat the majority of the remaining money on his contract.
Another option that is swirling around is the one of simply releasing the 30-year-old outright with $51.5 million remaining on his contract that Boston would have to pay. But if they hold onto him he has shown such a defensive liability that he is costing his team games, and that ability isn’t going to get any better as he gets older. What is Sandoval? A platoon designated hitter? Not a good one at that.
Boston should look to find a trade partner who is willing to take on some of Sandoval’s money, but if that fails a release of him makes sense and it shows the rest of the clubhouse that management expects the team to win ballgames. A trade of Sandoval would mean the need of bringing in another third baseman to serve as the starter till the end of the season, but that talk will be in a future article.