BOSTON (CBS) – 98.5 The Sports Hub’s Fred Toucher and Jon Wallach had a conversation Thursday morning about the glut of Red Sox outfielders, and how Allen Craig has largely been forgotten.
Why is that?
“It’s just being assumed that they are not going to play Allen Craig in right field, and it’s just being assumed that if they do play him at any point it’s just to showcase him so they can trade him,” Fred Toucher said at the start the segment. “All the things about Allen Craig that are good are reasons they’re being used that they should move him.”
Fred went on to explain that Allen Craig has a reasonable contract, and under team control for the next few seasons. The 30-year-old is signed through 2017 for five years and $31 million with a team option for 2018.
“That is incredibly cheap for this kind of hitter,” Wallach added.
“This is a massive bargain. This is a guy who has proven to be an RBI machine. He hits with runners in scoring position at an almost unbelievable rate,” Toucher said of Craig.
Another thing Allen Craig brings to the table is his positional versatility.
Craig has played seven positions total (including designated hitter) in his five MLB seasons. But Shane Victorino is all but penciled in as the Opening Day starter in right field. Left field (Hanley Ramirez) and center field (Mookie Betts) are also locked up, as well as first base (Mike Napoli) and third base (Pablo Sandoval).
Fred doesn’t understand the fascination with Shane Victorino, and thinks Allen Craig needs to be in the lineup. Jon Wallach notes that Mike Napoli will become a free agent at the end of the season, so perhaps the Red Sox view Craig as their next first baseman.
What are your expectations for Allen Craig in 2015? Should he be an everyday player? Or is he mere trade bait?
Listen below for the full conversation: