3 Red Sox on Thin Ice Heading Into Opening Day

The Boston Red Sox are facing a ton of pressure as the 2024 MLB season is set to begin this week. Here are three players who are on thin ice ahead of Opening Day.
SS Trevor Story is one Red Sox player who's on thin ice ahead of Opening Day 2024.
SS Trevor Story is one Red Sox player who's on thin ice ahead of Opening Day 2024. / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
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The 2024 MLB season beginning on Thursday means that Boston Red Sox fans can finally put last year's woes in the rearview mirror. After missing the playoffs for the fourth time in five years last season, the Red Sox are ready to begin a fresh air with new faces on the roster and Craig Breslow as the Chief Baseball Officer.

If the Red Sox want to return to the MLB postseason, certain players must step up. Although last year's shortcomings were a team effort, a handful of individuals fell short of expectations, meaning they must elevate their performance if they want to stick around in Boston for the long term.

With that in mind, here are three Red Sox who are skating on thin ice ahead of Opening Day 2024.

1. SS Trevor Story

There are several Red Sox players with something to prove this season, including Trevor Story. The 31-year-old shortstop is a great player when healthy, but the issue is that he's been anything but healthy since joining Boston on a six-year, $140 million contract back in March 2022.

Since arriving in Beantown two years ago, Story has only played in 137 of 324 possible games (42.3%). Heel and hand injuries sidelined him for the majority of the 2022 campaign before a UCL issue kept him out of the Red Sox's 2023 lineup until August, meaning he only got to play 43 total games.

Unfortunately, Story didn't generate much production during his limited playing time last season. The two-time All-Star only recorded three home runs and 14 RBIs with 55 strikeouts while slashing .203/.250/.316 across 168 plate appearances. Not only was his 32.7% strikeout rate his worst mark since 2017, but it was also noticeably worse than the MLB average (22.4%).

It'd be one thing if Story was on an expiring "prove yourself" deal, but that isn't the case. He carries the second-highest salary in Boston this season ($22.5 million) and is signed through 2027 with player opt-out available in 2025 and a $5 million team option in 2028. In other words, his contract will only look uglier if he can't remain healthy and productive.