Pablo Sandoval’s role diminished to what it should’ve been all along
What’s the worst thing that could happen to Pablo Sandoval other than being eaten by a real live panda or getting released by the Boston Red Sox and forfeiting his contract?
Actually, there’s probably a lot of things. But let’s think baseball. If you’re making $19 million, shouldn’t you be a starter? And by starter I mean either a starting pitcher or an everyday position player. At this point, Sandoval is neither.
Will he play more often than not? Yes. But Sandoval is apparently a platoon player, according to manager John Farrell. That’s right. The Red Sox finally pulled the trigger on that one. Deven Marrero is expected to get starts against left-handed pitching and Sandoval will get the nod against righties.
Man, what a way to prove a point to Sandoval. This isn’t Travis Shaw coming after his job. This isn’t even Will Middlebrooks coming after Kevin Youkilis. No. This is Deven Marrero, who had the lowest OPS in the International League last season. That’s the east coast AAA in case you were wondering. The Pacific Coast League–on the other hand–is out in the wild wild west.
Oh, and Marrero never really had been a third baseman. He’s just a really good fielder, and that’s more valuable than Sandoval even when the dude is lucky to hit .170 with a .480 OPS. If anyone else–except maybe a backup catcher but Sandy Leon wouldn’t–did that you’d probably scream. But that shows you what the Red Sox think of Pablo Sandoval.
And of course, that means viable option at third base vs right-handed pitching.
The splits and batting right handed thing was also getting ridiculous with Sandoval. In 2014, he batted .317 against righties and under .200 against lefties. That should’ve been a telltale sign for him to abandon switch-hitting. Maybe this is what he needs to do it–no opportunities to bat righty.
Sandoval is almost at the halfway point in his contract so if it doesn’t work out, the Red Sox should be able to survive another 2.75 years of him–even if he doesn’t perform. They’ve technically already done 2.25, so yeah…