Today the Boston Red Sox placed first baseman Mitch Moreland on the 10-day injured list with a lower back strain. Boston also sent reliever Travis Lakins back down to triple-A, while promoting relievers Colten Brewer and Josh Taylor. Still, losing Moreland is the big news here.
Placing Moreland on the IL will not be the end of the world for Boston, but it removes a big part of their order. Moreland currently leads the team with 13 round trippers, providing some much needed power in the middle of the lineup.
So with Moreland on the mend what is the solution? It would be easy to say that Boston plans on throwing Steve Pearce out there, but with him hitting a measly .182 on the year, that is not so simple.
Pearce should still be expected to get a majority of the games at first base when the Sox oppose a left-handed pitcher, but on days against a righty fans should expect to see Michael Chavis on the first base bag. That may come as a bit of a surprise, but when you really think about it it makes a lot of sense.
Ever since being promoted to the big leagues, Chavis has been a spark for the lineup. Having him penciled in gives Boston another big bat to help score some runs. The way that manager Alex Cora has been able to do that is by putting Chavis out at second base. Still, second base is not the rookie’s original position.
Before the promotion, the organization was grooming Chavis to become Boston’s future everyday first baseman. Chavis was at third base for a lot of his minor league career, but with Rafael Devers blocking that route and him continuing to bombard baseballs, the Sox decided to send Chavis to the other side of the diamond in an effort to create a spot for the 23-year-old. And with Brock Holt back and Moreland out, Boston has the ability to slide Chavis over to first while putting the “Brockstar” in at second.
Like I said Pearce will still get a number of at-bats, but with both Moreland and himself being on the last year’s of their deals, the Sox can now see what kind of first baseman Chavis is without having to take Moreland and his 13 bombs out of the lineup.
-Jarrod Ribaudo (@Jribs53)