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John Farrell still hopeful Stephen Drew will return to Red Sox

Dec 19, 2013, 11:00 PM EDT

Stephen Drew Getty Getty Images

The Red Sox acquired utility infielder Jonathan Herrera from the Rockies yesterday in exchange for left-hander Franklin Morales and minor league right-hander Chris Martin, but manager John Farrell confirmed during an appearance on WEEI’s Hot Stove show this evening that the move doesn’t mean that the team has ruled out the return of Stephen Drew. In fact, he indicated that there’s mutual interest in getting something done.

“Herrera, this is a guy that’s played all over the infield. We like him from the left side a little bit better — he’s had better performance as a left-handed hitter. He is a switch-hitter, but better from the left side. We feel like with all the other right-handed infielders, it’s a good complement to those who are already here. At the same time, if things fall a certain way with Stephen Drew, it doesn’t prohibit us from adding Drew as well.”

Indeed, Farrell suggested that mutual interest exists in having the shortstop return to the team with whom he signed a one-year, $9.5 million for the 2013 season.

“Both sides would like to see this come together,” Farrell said of talks with Drew. “But at the same time, as we all know, he’s looking to see what best opportunities would be out there for him.”

Drew’s market has been slow to develop this winter, in part because he is attached to draft pick compensation. The Mets have been mentioned as one possibility, but general manager Sandy Alderson has said that if the team does upgrade at shortstop this winter, it will likely be via trade and not the free agent market.

As of now, the Red Sox are expected to go with top prospect Xander Bogaerts as their starting shortstop in 2014. If Drew returns, Bogaerts would likely get every opportunity to be the starting third baseman. Will Middlebrooks, who hit just .227 with a .696 OPS last season, could be pushed to the minors in such a scenario.

  1. bunkerhillbob - Dec 19, 2013 at 11:29 PM

    If Boston can retain Drew, I will be pleased with the moves this off-season and feel the Sox will remain the best team in the AL East. Keeping my fingers crossed.

  2. slaugin - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:15 AM

    Screw that… Xander is the SS of the future and it’s time for him to take over at the position. I just don’t understand what the infatuation with Drew is, let him go

    • bunkerhillbob - Dec 20, 2013 at 8:10 AM

      “Of the future” is right, but, right now, let him play 3B because WMB is not big-league caliber with the glove and the Cecchini is not quite ready. Trade WMB, if possible, and Drew could also be traded next year if Ceccini is ready to take over 3B. Our problem is WMB; he can’t field.

      • tfbuckfutter - Dec 20, 2013 at 9:38 AM

        Who is going to trade for Drew, and a $15m+ salary next year when they can sign him now for the cost of a draft pick?

        And how, exactly, do you see his presence not retarding the development of Xavier? How does X playing a season at 3rd base better prepare him to take over shortstop sometime next year?

    • pastabelly - Dec 20, 2013 at 8:28 AM

      I am coming around to this way of thinking. I understand them not wanting a rookie last year to play SS for a playoff run, but now Bogearts has WS and great post season experience behind him. They also need to find out what they have in Middlebrooks. Bringing back Drew sets Middlebrooks back and I think the team still likes him. I’d love to see Boras bring Drew to an NL team and see the Sox get another sandwich pick, which easily would have much more value than Stephen Drew.

      • bunkerhillbob - Dec 22, 2013 at 8:49 AM

        We have a great starting rotation and great bullpen to spearhead a team that is very strong defensively, up the middle(with AJ and Drew), and a potent offense that still includes a Big Papi. Boston needs to try and capture another championship, right now, and not be worried about Xander playing 3B for a year. WMB will NEVER be a third baseman. Boston won’t pay $15 mil/yr for Drew either. He’s likely to take $20mil for two yrs. Don’t waste a core group like the one we have! Sign a top-notch short-stop and win another title!

  3. rollinghighwayblues - Dec 20, 2013 at 9:12 AM

    “The Red Sox acquired utility infielder Jonathan Herrera from the Rockies”

    I read that as “The Red Sox acquired Jeremy Hermida”. Whew. Bullet dodged.

  4. aceshigh11 - Dec 20, 2013 at 12:31 PM

    Drew is definitely an asset. Not a great hitter, but a solid fielder and a good bridge to Xander.

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