Naturally, the departure of Mookie Betts first raised issues about the Red Sox offense. In any case, on top of losing an elite hitter, Boston lost a four-time Gold Glove award winner.
Alex Verdugo is a strong corner outfielder with a decent arm, yet he will be unable to begin the season on time. This played a role in Boston’s interest in Kevin Pillar — who was at Red Sox camp on Friday.
At the point when it came to talking about Verdugo’s timeline, Ron Roenicke couldn’t give any insight on Friday. However, his inability to include anything the issue indicates the Red Sox have questions about Verdugo’s health.
“I think he needs to go through everything with (our medical staff), and I know it’s been quite a while, so they want to get a good feel for him,” Roenicke said. “They don’t know him, which makes a big difference. So, they’ll talk to him, figure out where we are and at what point we can start going forward with whatever. Whether it’s baseball activities, whether it’s just strength activities. I’ll know a lot more (Saturday) when I talk to you guys and try to figure out where we are.”
With there being questions surrounding the previous Dodgers outfielder’s health, Pillar beginning in the outfield to start the year is realistic. Presently, that could be in the right field, however, the Red Sox have additionally proposed playing Pillar in the center and moving Jackie Bradley Jr. to right.
“We haven’t talked about it a lot, but we did some,” Roenicke said. “Because they’re flexible. Jack is a great right fielder, too. And he’s a great center fielder, and I think Pillar can play all of them.
“(Pillar) always been known as a good defender. We know he doesn’t mind laying out, we know he doesn’t mind crashing into walls. Sometimes you worry when a guy does too much of that because you’ve got the injury factor. But he knows how to play. I’m not sure if the metrics on him are the same as five years ago when he was probably faster. I’m not sure, I haven’t checked on it. But he’s always been a good defender.”
Pillar additionally gives the Red Sox a right-handed bat in what has become a lefty-heavy lineup.