The Boston Red Sox shockingly decided to trade All-Star starting pitcher Chris Sale this offseason to the Atlanta Braves. The trade didn’t make much sense on paper, as Boston’s starting rotation wasn’t the strongest.
However, the Red Sox received the 23-year-old infielder Vaughn Grissom in the deal for Sale, who has some major league experience with the Braves over the last two years and could be starting this season at Fenway.
Red Sox manager Alex Cora told reporters Tuesday morning that Grissom will get every chance to play second base, per Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe. As the Red Sox prepare for their first official workout on Wednesday, second base is one of the few position battles fans will have their attention on this spring.
Red Sox News: Vaughn Grissom Will Have a Chance To Start at 2B
Grissom will compete against Pablo Reyes, Emmanuel Valdez, and Ceddanne Rafaela. Reyes played 64 games last season with the Red Sox, slashing .287/.339/.377 with nine doubles, two home runs, and 20 RBI. The 30-year-old infielder has spent five years in the majors and is a career .256 hitter at the plate.
Meanwhile, the 25-year-old Valdez made his major league debut last season with Boston. The young infielder hit .266 with eight doubles, six home runs, and 19 RBI in 49 games.
Finally, the wildcard among the group is Rafaela, who is only 23 years old. Rafaela made his major league debut last season with the Red Sox, hitting. 241 with two home runs and five RBI in 28 games. However, Cora reportedly envisions the 23-year-old slugger as the centerfielder if he makes the team.
That being said, Grissom only has to beat out Valdez and Reyes for the starting second base job this season. It shouldn’t be tough, as the 23-year-old infielder flashed with Atlanta and is a career .287 hitter.
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