Boston Red Sox Rumors: Pablo Sandoval Could Get Benched For Travis Shaw

Boston Red Sox rumors indicate Pablo Sandoval could get benched for Travis Shaw. These Red Sox rumors follow a very frustrating season for Sandoval, as he failed to live up to expectations during his first year in Boston. A report from the Boston Herald on Tuesday, March 22, states that Red Sox team president Dave Dombrowski could wind up exerting complete control in the decision. While it could take manager John Farrell out of the equation, it could also push Sandoval and Shaw to really perform during Spring Training.

Travis Shaw is putting together an amazing Spring Training, making these Boston Red Sox rumors very believable. Through 14 games, Shaw has a 0.450 batting average (18-for-40) with nine RBIs, nine runs scored, and a 1.188 OPS. As the team tries to figure out how the 25-man roster will look on Opening Day, Shaw might have just forced himself into the starting lineup. But would the Red Sox really choose to bench Sandoval after giving him millions to come to Boston? The Boston Herald reporters certainly feel it is close to happening.

Pablo Sandoval knows what is on the line with the brewing controversy, especially with how much he was heralded when he signed with the Red Sox. He commented on length about the situation when asked about it by writer Michael Silverman.

“Every day is a competition — every single day, every moment. Every guy competes to be better and better. don’t know why you guys make a big deal. Every guy is here working hard to make the team look better, win games. Every guy here is working together to be better and better, so that’s good.”

Travis Shaw And David Ortiz
(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

An interesting wrinkle to these Boston Red Sox rumors is that Sandoval isn’t having a horrible Spring Training. Through 14 games he is 9-for-34 with an OPS of 0.864 for the Red Sox. Those aren’t bad numbers, even if his on-base percentage is just 0.306 so far. They aren’t exactly on-par with the huge contract the Red Sox gave him during the 2015 MLB offseason though.

Sandoval still has four or five more years with the Red Sox, beginning with a salary of $17.6 million for the 2016 MLB season. He then makes $17.6 million in 2017, $18.6 million in 2018, and $18.6 million in 2019. For the 2020 MLB season, the Red Sox have a team option of $17 million on Sandoval, but it also includes a $5 million buyout. Due to his struggles last year, Sandoval isn’t a good trade asset, forcing the team to find a place for him. Could that place be on the bench very soon?

During that offseason, there were numerous Boston Red Sox rumors as the team dove right into free agency. The Red Sox signed Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez, giving the fans a lot to get excited about. The season didn’t go well, though, as both players struggled and the Red Sox failed to get out of last place in the American League East. Sandoval played in 126 games, going just 115-for-470 at the plate (a 0.245 batting average). His OPS also dropped to 0.658 and Red Sox fans grew uneasy about the long-term contract.

Sandoval Against Rays
(Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)

After getting called up during the 2015 MLB season, Travis Shaw posted a 0.270 batting average and 0.813 OPS in 248 plate appearances. That included 23 extra base hits, 36 RBIs, and 18 walks that showed he could get on base quite often. Coming into Spring Training, it was unclear where Shaw would fit on the roster, but there are now indications that he could work as the permanent starting third baseman. These Boston Red Sox rumors are certainly something that fans of the team and fantasy baseball owners should pay close attention to, because it could lead to the front office paying another team to take on Pablo Sandoval.

[Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images]