Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here... highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington visited David Ortiz in the Dominican Republic last week, and he expects the designated hitter to be good to go for Opening Day.
"He's hitting and doing his agility and starting to run," Cherington said Monday in an interview with MLB Network Radio. "He's David Ortiz. We'll see where he is as we report 10 days from now or so and take it from there. We don't have any reason to think he won't be in our lineup on Opening Day."
"In Jacoby's case, there's no issues whatsoever," Cherington said. "He's fine [and] had a normal offseason."
"Our expectation is that [Jarrod Saltalamacchia] and [David] Ross would be the two catchers," Cherington said. "We'll see. There's always room for someone to push. Ryan Lavarnway is a very talented young man. … He's going to have a very good Major League career. When that sort of clock starts in Boston remains to be seen."
We can file Cherington's update on Papi's achilles as good news, but it actually startled me a bit. It never crossed my mind that Ortiz wouldn't be ready for Opening Day. Maybe I've been jaded by the Carl Crawford experience, but any time the GM starts talking in February about how a player should be ready by Opening Day, well, it gives me pause.
If, for any reason, Papi can't go once the season starts, that possibly changes the third point Cherington made regarding the catchers. No Ortiz equals a gigantic hole in the middle of the lineup. Boston isn't exactly teeming with big bats. If that situation does arise where we need to replace him again, the Sox do have several options -- none of which are exactly appealing.
The most likely scenario probably involves Overbay making the Opening Day roster. But it wouldn't shock me to see Lavarnway stay with the club and have Salty play the role of DH until Papi's return. That's about as far down the rabbit hole of roster replacements I'd like to go.
This roster isn't bad, but it's certainly not built to handle any major injuries. Let's just take Ben at his word and assume we "don't have any reason to think he won't be in our lineup on Opening Day."
On Page 2, Lowrie's on the move again.