BOSTON (CBS) – Although it may not feel like it in bitter-cold Boston, spring training is starting to heat up down in Fort Myers. Last night, Tim Britton of the Providence Journal joined The Adam Jones Show to talk some Red Sox baseball.
They started the segment by talking about Xander Bogaerts and the sky-high expectations that seem to be surrounding him. Britton said that the Sox haven’t done much to temper the expectations for the young infielder, revealing, “John Farrell said that if he were making his Opening Day lineup today, [Bogaerts would] be batting sixth, which is pretty impressive for a guy who’s 21 years old.”
Britton went on to say that he wouldn’t expect a Nomar Garciaparra or Derek Jeter rookie campaign out of him, but, “For him to be one of the better shortstops in the American League is a more than reasonable expectation.”
Then the conversation turned to the leadoff situation, and Britton recommended that the Sox bat Shane Victorino in the first spot over Daniel Nava. He believes the Hawaiian would be more productive in the leadoff role, while Nava would offer the lineup more protection batting fifth. If he were in Farrell’s shoes, his lineup card would read Nava-Pedroia-Ortiz-Napoli-Nava for the Sox first five batters.
On the topic of contracts, he thinks Sox brass would like to sign Jon Lester to a six-year extension in the vicinity of $120 million, but the lefty and his camp may be asking for more. He also thinks it’d be wise for Ben Cherington to sign David Ortiz to a one-year extension now, warning that the GM would likely have to give him two years if he goes to free agency this October.
You can listen to the entire interview below: