6 Exciting Takeaways for Red Sox Fans After Spring Training Opener

The Boston Red Sox had their first Spring Training game and there were plenty of positives to take away ahead of the new season.
Mar 27, 2022; Fort Myers, Florida, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Garrett Whitlock (72)
Mar 27, 2022; Fort Myers, Florida, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Garrett Whitlock (72) / Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
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2. Bobby Dalbec Has a Good Chance to Make the Roster

Dalbec has been an absolute wildcard in the Red Sox system for years now. At 26 years old, he had appeared to have positioned himself well as Boston's first baseman of the future in a campaign in which he socked 25 home runs and drove in 78 runs.

However, Dalbec will have to get the barrel to the ball more consistently, as he has struggled with swing-and-misses with a career .231 average. After receiving a major league call-up last season following an injury to Triston Casas, Dalbec hit a measly .204 and struck out 28 times in 53 plate appearances while only adding one home run, which also accounted for his lone RBI.

With Triple-A Worcester in 2023, Dalbec hit .279 with 33 long balls and 79 runs driven in. He greatly enhanced his versatility in Worcester as well, starting at five different positions. The 28-year-old started 27 games at first base, 36 at the hot corner, 36 in right field, six at shortstop, and eight as the WooSox' designated hitter. This versatility has undoubtedly enhanced the potential value that he would provide the big league club.

On Saturday, Dalbec got the start batting third and playing first base and gave Boston two solid at-bats. He singled up the middle in his first at-bat off of Corbin Burnes and took a two-strike pitch the other way to right field in his second at-bat for an RBI single, plating Nathan Hickey.

The departures of Justin Turner and Adam Duvall have opened up some right-handed at-bats on the Red Sox roster, something that Alex Cora noted when affirming that Dalbechas a shot at the Opening Day roster:

"He has a chance to make this team. I think versatility is coming into play. I think the outfield play we like. He did a good job in Triple A. Obviously the configuration of the stadium is different in Triple A but he did a good job. And we need a right-handed bat that can play in the corners and be versatile. So he has a shot to do it."

Boston manager Alex Cora on Dalbec

Cora highlighted Dalbec's defensive ability and power: "He’s a good defender. He’s going to hit the ball out of the ballpark". If he is able to continuously string together quality at-bats as he did on Saturday, he will only increase his chances of making Boston's last 26.