Boston’s purging of its roster may be contiuing if recent rumblings are to be believed.
A report from the MLB on Tuesday night stated that the Red Sox are actively seeking a buyer for Andrew Benintendi. Houston, Oakland and Texas have all inquired about the left fielder’s services and an anonymous rival executive would be shocked if Benintendi is not traded by this weekend.
Benintendi won the Golden Spikes with Arkansas in 2015 and the Red Sox selected him seventh overall at that year’s draft. He finished as runner-up for Rookie of the Year to Aaron Judge in 2017 and enjoyed a breakout season the following year. He hit .290 with 87 RBI, 41 doubles and 103 runs scored and formed a dominant outfield trio with Mookie Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. His contributions helped the Red Sox win their fourth World Series since 2004 and Benintendi appeared to be on the rise as one of the game’s next stars. However, he’s had difficulty replicating that success since 2018.
2019 was a step in the wrong direction for the left fielder as his batting average fell to .266 and he managed only 68 RBI. The regression became a full-on downward spiral during the 2020 campaign. Benintendi started the season 4-39 at the plate and managed just one RBI before a rib injury ended his season in August.
Though there’s no reason to believe the 26-year-old can’t bounce back, the Red Sox have evidently seen enough. With Betts, Bradley Jr, David Price, Heath Hembree, Brandon Workman and Mitch Moreland all having left the team in the last year, Boston appears to be on the cusp of a total rebuild, and Benintendi, the last remnant of its World Championship outfield, could be the next to be shipped off.
What the Red Sox receive in return could indicate if Benintendi’s stock has fallen. Beginning with the Betts-Price blockbuster last February, Boston’s new mantra appears to be low cost at all costs. Red Sox Nation will have to hold its collective breath as the fate of yet another Fenway Park favorite is decided.