Entering this season the Red Sox need to get the production out of Jarrod Saltalamacchia that they expected to get when choosing him as Jason Variteks replacement. In 2012 Saltalamacchia played in 121 games compiling 405 at bats with only a .222 batting average. Saltalamacchia began last season putting up numbers that were debatable for a selection to the All Star Game but slumped severely after the break. Saltalamacchia hit 25 home runs but only compiled 59 RBI's. While hitting in the 6 spot in the line up Saltalamacchia needs to produce better numbers this. These RBI numbers would be acceptable for the very bottom of the order, the 7-9 spots, but not the 6 spot. Saltalamacchia should have anywhere between 70-100 RBI's per season.
Last season behind the place Saltalamacchia played in 104 games starting 95 of them playing 852 innings. His fielding percentage was .991 with only 6 passed balls. Saltalamacchia had 80 runners attempt to steal, throwing out 18 of these runners for a percentage of .184.
Saltalamacchia needs to improve both behind the plate and at the plate. He needs to step into a leadership role that was vacated when Tek left. This team is searching for an identity and this identity needs to be found by the veterans like Saltalamacchia. If he does not step up and produce better numbers then last season the team could be expecting a catching change at some point and Saltalamacchia could be packing his bags and leaving Boston. Ryan MacLeod 1/23/2013 09:14:00 PM Tweet