4. Alex Verdugo
Turning back the clock a bit, one of Chaim Bloom's biggest gaffes towards the end of his reign was how he handled the Alex Verdugo situation.
For those needing a refresher, Verdugo had his fair share of disciplinary issues this season. He was benched twice during the 2023 campaign; once for a lack of hustle in June before showing up late to a game in August.
The most frustrating part is that the Red Sox had opportunities to move Verdugo after allegedly making him available "towards the end of July." It even got to the point where Boston was ready to do business with the rival Yankees, but a finalized deal never materialized, per beat writer Chris Henrique.
Although he shows flashes of promise now and then, Verdugo's streaky play has left much to be desired. Playing an average of 147 games over the last three campaigns, the 27-year-old is only averaging just over 12 home runs and 63 RBIs per season. His slash numbers have also declined with each season he's spent in Beantown.
If Verdugo's decline continues and his disciplinary issues can't be fixed, what's the point of keeping him around? Breslow might not even want to work on the veteran infielder given that he inherited the complicated situation.
At the end of the day, it's clear that a fresh start is needed for both sides. Verdugo might be capable of reversing his fortunes, but a fresh start with a team that didn't bench him could be the best option. I'm also sure the Red Sox could get something back for a player who's above average in the batter's box and in the infield.
If Boston wants to start the new era off right and put the disappointing 2023 memories in the rearview, Verdugo has to go.
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