There really were not any surprises when it came to the position players that made the Boston Red Sox ALDS roster. The left field/first base rotation of Mike Carp, Daniel Nava, Jonny Gomes, and Mike Napoli remains intact, but it will be interesting to see what combination John Farrell turns to most often.
While the beards of Boston will likely take center stage in the ALDS, the final two positional spots were still being debated until Friday morning. Rookie Xander Bogaerts makes the roster ahead of defensive specialist John McDonald, and role of pinch runner goes to Quintin Berry over Jackie Bradley Jr.
Ryan Lavarnway was left off the roster as the Red Sox will keep just two catchers in David Ross and Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
Napoli, Gomes, and Saltalamacchia will get the starts in Game 1 at first, left, and catcher respectively, but the Red Sox will only go as far as the top four in the lineup will take them.
Jacoby Ellsbury, Shane Victorino, Dustin Pedroia, and David Ortiz will have to shine for the Red Sox in this series, especially early in the game. With starters like Matt Moore, Alex Cobb, and David Price opposing the Red Sox, the top of the order will have to make them work in the first inning and not let them get into an early groove.
The Red Sox position players are significantly better than the Tampa Bay Rays, especially when you consider the fact the Rays will start Jose Lobaton, Sean Rodriguez, and Delmon Young in Game 1.