Rafeal Devers has Officially Lost the Third Base Job

It has happened very quietly but the kid from the Dominican Republic is no longer the starting third baseman for the Boston Red Sox.

I know this may could be viewed as premature considering Rafeal Devers just came off the disabled list, but there is no way that manager Alex Cora hands the job back over to him. He has been really bad defensively, committing the most errors in the bigs (21) while being average to below-average at the dish with a .721 OPS. Still, Devers never really lost the job until this stint on the DL

While rehabbing his hamstring injury, others have impressed. Eduardo Nunez hit .283 in August after starting the year off slow. It could be due to the knee issue he had last season carrying over into 2018, but Nunez did not look comfortable early on. Now he is looking spry, playing third base almost every day.

Along with Nunez, Ian Kinsler and Brock Holt are both pushing Devers out of the fold. Kinsler is a gold glove defender that has plenty of postseason experience. Think the Sox bench him in the playoffs? No way, they acquired him at the trade deadline for a reason. Keeping Kinsler in the lineup pushes both Nunez and Holt over from second base, where they were playing earlier in the year, over to third.

Holt and Nunez are easier than Kinsler to skip over, but both players are better defenders than Devers and both have been hitting as good if not better than the 21-year-old so why would it make sense to bench them for Raffy?

In the postseason when pitching and defense becomes ever so important, Devers becomes a liability. It is completely possible at this point that number 11 gets left off the playoff roster, but having his pop on the bench would benefit the Red Sox if they have to try and spark the lineup with a pinch hitter. Devers is perfect in that role if both Nunez and Holt keep holding down the third base gig.

-Jarrod Ribaudo (@Jribs53)

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