Coolbaugh: Red Sox`s Alex Verdugo dilemma seems headed toward a conclusion

Coolbaugh: 4,444 The Red Sox’ Alex Verdugo’s dilemma appears to be coming to an end.
Alex Verdugo’s time in a Boston Red Sox uniform appears to be quickly coming to an end.
As new chief baseball officer Craig Breslow confirmed to reporters Wednesday during the general managers’ meeting in Scottsdale, other teams are checking with him about the outfielder’s availability This.
Breslow said the team “can’t commit to anything” and said it would “look at every opportunity”, adding “where it lands, we’ll see”.
He also didn’t deny Verdugo staying in Boston, saying “he felt like he was committed to doing his best.
” Verdugo’s career in Boston is at a crossroads, to say the least.
His commitment was questioned after being benched twice by Alex Cora last season.
Although he got off to a good start last season, Verdugo’s production decreased as the season progressed.
His numbers late in the year were down from his first two seasons in Boston, slashing just .
421 and driving in 20 fewer runs than in 2022 – even though he tied his career high with 13 home runs.
It wasn’t a completely ineffective offensive season – certainly not by modern standards considering the league’s batting average in 2023 was just .
248 – but it was still far from away from the “All-Star” moniker, many were adamant.
should have received.
(Personally, I’ve never understood that.
As much as I like him, how can you say his halftime numbers are honorable mention worthy?
Of course, every team has its own.
needed a rep, a stupid rule to begin with, but his average fell below .
300 on May 21 and only recovered from a semi-recovery at the end of June.
But looking at how he produces from game to game, it’s very inconsistent.
As far as I remember, there was nothing he did exceptionally well.
If anything, I think Rafael Devers should have been the team’s All-Star representative in Seattle.
No, it wasn’t Raffy’s best year — he hit just .
254 at the break — but he still led the team with 20 homers and 70 RBIs.
Anyway, it’s neither here nor there.
) Where were we anyway?
Ah, yes, disappointing numbers for Verdugo in general.
He has one saving grace in a wasted year: his defense.
Verdugo has managed “second center field” well at Fenway Park, and his .
990 fielding percentage in right field and his American League-leading nine “saves” earned him a spot.
Golden Gloves finalist.
For a team that has been comically underperforming for most (all) of the season, Verdugo’s defensive progress deserves recognition – if not at the national level then at least at local.
Having a capable right fielder at Fenway is important, and Verdugo has certainly become that.
As for his current situation, I see it going one of two ways.
Or Verdugo will be moved – hopefully with some pitching help – and the only remaining piece from the Mookie Betts trade in the system will be Connor Wong (yes, who is a possible major league catcher expendable – best served as a replacement or in a platoon, in my eyes).
Either the rumors have died down (meaning Breslow isn’t willing to take his own advice on risk and isn’t waiting for a perfect deal, as he told reporters on Wednesday) and Verdugo begins his fifth season in Boston in 2024 with a contract.
years to prove his courage.
Either could work well, but as I wrote recently, I don’t believe Verdugo is the kind of core, foundational player whose production just isn’t possible.


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