Red Sox president believes team will make roster additions before Opening Day

Red Sox president believes team will make roster additions before Opening Day

Sam Kennedy appeared at the Red Sox Truck Day celebration Monday. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)Getty Images

BOSTON — Nine days before the first official workout for Red Sox pitchers and catchers takes place in Fort Myers, team president/CEO Sam Kennedy said he still anticipates that the club adds players — and payroll — to their 2024 roster.

Speaking during “Truck Day” festivities at Fenway Park, Kennedy who along with chief baseball officer Craig Breslow met with fans on Van Ness St., said he views Boston’s roster as an unfinished product.

“The offseason continues,” Kennedy said. “There’s still a lot of unsigned players and conversations going on. I would anticipate there’s still work to be done.”

So far, the Red Sox have made only incremental changes to the core of their roster. Boston has made one significant free agent signing (Lucas Giolito) while making three important trades (sending Alex Verdugo to the Yankees, acquiring Tyler O’Neill from St. Louis and swapping Chris Sale for Vaughn Grissom with the Braves).

Against that backdrop, Kennedy said at last month’s Winter Weekend event that he expects the club’s 2024 payroll to be lower than it was in 2023, when the total came in around $225 million. At most, based on MassLive’s Chris Smith’s projection that the Red Sox have about $201 million committed already, the club would have just $24 million to spend before matching its 2023 total. Though top free agents Blake Snell, Jordan Montgomery, Cody Bellinger, Matt Chapman and Jorge Soler remain available, it appears the Red Sox are unlikely to play at the top end of the market.

Pitching remains a glaring need for Boston, especially in terms of rotation additions. But Kennedy deferred to Breslow when asking about the likelihood of such moves.

“Probably a better question for Brez,” Kennedy said. “I don’t want to predict what sort of shape or form any additions or changes could take. But we’re still going

The Truck Day festivities, which brought about 50-75 fans to the area outside of Fenway Park, took place three days after the Red Sox announced that former general manager Theo Epstein was back in the fold as a part-owner and senior advisor for Fenway Sports Group. Kennedy said he believes the organization has made strides toward getting back to its winning ways this winter even if the roster changes have largely underwhelmed the fan base.

“We’re continuing to build this thing back up to hopefully a championship organization,” Kennedy said. “Long way to go. Talk is irrelevant, especially difficult for fans to hear when you’re coming off two disappointing seasons. We’re confident we’re doing the right things internally and we need to keep doing those things.”

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