John Farrell envisions Shane Victorino, Daniel Nava as Red Sox leadoff men
|12.09.13 at 4:52 pm ET|
ORLANDO — Speaking during his allotted 30-minute media availability at the winter meetings, Red Sox manager John Farrell suggested his team’s leadoff hitters for the coming season will be a combination of Daniel Nava and Shane Victorino.
Victorino, who finished 2013 with a .351 on-base percentage, hit leadoff eight times, while Nava (.385 OBP) manned the lineup’s top spot in nine games (8 starts).
“I think the most important thing is we’re not going to replace some 50‑something stolen bases by Jacoby [Ellsbury],” Farrell said. “The biggest thing would be who is our best on-base percentage guys to keep them or keep that individual in front of [Dustin Pedroia], and David [Ortiz], and [Mike Napoli], those are the two guys that quickly come to mind right now. ”
Farrell went on to explain who he liked the dynamic of Pedroia hitting in the two-hole, with Ortiz sliding up to third, an order the Red Sox implemented at the end of their postseason run.
The Sox manager believed that Victorino would return to switch-hitting in 2014, after having hit almost exclusively right-handed after suffering a hamstring injury.
“Everything says he will,” said Farrell when asked if Victorino would hit lefty in ’14. “That was a conversation as the year unfolded and finished out. But Shane has a way of coming up with some things that kind of keep you smiling.”
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