Surprises from the Red Sox's initial 60-player pool
On Sunday afternoon, the Boston Red Sox released their initial 60-man player pool ahead of the July 1 report date. What this means is the players on the list have been invited to the Red Sox's "Spring Training 2.0", which will occur at Fenway Park this week.
Here is a list of the players on Boston's list that will be heading to Fenway:
Jackie Bradley Jr.
Well, as you may have noticed the Red Sox did not select 60 guys to bring to camp, which means they already have their eyes set on these 47 players.
Another one of the surprises is the absence of catcher Jonathan Lucroy. MassLive.com's Chris Cotillo reported shortly after the release that Lucroy would eventually be added to the player pool, as the organization is currently adjusting Lucroy's contract.
Christian Vasquez is obviously the starting catcher, so Lucroy and Kevin Plawecki will be battling for the backup job.
The only other big surprise to me is the fact that Jeter Downs was not included in the player pool. Downs, of course, was one of the big pieces in the offseason Mookie Betts trade. While Downs seems to be the Red Sox's future starting second basemen, he wasn't added to the roster likely because of the fact he doesn't play a lot of positions.
As you may have noticed, Connor Wong, who was also packaged in the Betts deal, was added to the player pool because he can play multiple positions including catcher, which makes him more valuable than Downs in this situation.
Bobby Dalbec is a player to keep an eye on this summer over the next three weeks because he might show up on the big league roster at least in the early part of the season when Boston is allowed to have more players on the roster to protect their starters.
Dalbec is one of the Red Sox's top prospects and seems to be a key piece of the Sox's future at Fenway Park.