Red Sox extra bases: Andrew Benintendi proved star potential in 2017

BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 09: Andrew Benintendi
BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 09: Andrew Benintendi /

The Boston Red Sox season ended on Monday, but the future is bright for rookie outfielder Andrew Benintendi.

If it wasn’t for the monster season of New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge, Boston Red Sox young outfielder Andrew Benintendi might be considered for frontrunner for American League Rookie of the Year.

Although the season ended on a down note for the team overall, the 23-year-old rookie proved throughout the season that he has that “it” factor.

In 151 games played for the Red Sox in 2017, Benintendi hit .271 with 20 homers and 90 RBI.  The power numbers could be higher, but what the rookie proved throughout the season and into the playoffs is that he has a knack for the big hit.

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Following a July swoon in which he struggled mightily at the plate, Andrew Benintendi put together a hot streak in August that saw him deliver big hits to win games.  His hot bat was partially responsible for the team taking command of the AL East during that stretch.

In all, the way that he was able to bounce back following his slump at the plate along with his ability to deliver the big hit shows his professionalism.  As a player certainly on the rise, the Boston Red Sox as an organization have to feel enthusiastic about the high ceiling of Benintendi.

He just has to correct some shaky baserunning.

No fear of the big stage

If it wasn’t for Chris Sale and Craig Kimbrel blowing the lead and eventually the game in the Red Sox 5-4 loss to the Houston Astros in Game 4 of the American League Division Series, Andrew Benintendi would’ve been the star of the game.

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Stepping to the plate with his team down 3-2 in the fifth inning and a runner on base, the young outfielder took Justin Verlander deep for a two-run blast.  It gave the team a 4-3 lead at the time and seemingly all the momentum.

The postseason home run was already the second of his career and showcased how big time he is in big moments.  The at-bat itself also proved his ability to adjust to pitchers, even those as experienced and good as Verlander.

"“He was just throwing me all fastballs and after facing him the first time in the series, I had it in my mind that he might throw a slider at some point,” Benintendi said following the game, via"

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With a full season and two postseason experiences under his belt, Andrew Benintendi has a lot to build off.  He has proved the star power is there, he just now has to take command of it.  Hopefully that will happen in 2018.