This is the first time in many years that the Boston Red Sox have had two rookies in their regular lineup. The last time that I can recall would be around 1999 when Trot Nixon and Brian Daubach broke into the lineup at the same time. The two rookies that Boston has, Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley, are destined to be much better players. No offense, guys.
Boston can be a really tough town to play in, especially if one is a rookie. Red Sox Nation will let a player know if he isn’t doing well, and that can be absolutely horrific for a rookie’s psyche. Both Bogaerts and Bradley have struggled for different reasons. Bogaerts has been hitting pretty well, but he has made some errors at shortstop that have made fans long for Stephen Drew. Bradley has done everything right in the field, but he hasn’t hit much consistently.
Don’t worry, Boston fans. These are two of the top young prospects out there, and they are going to figure it out. They are going to have their growing pains, but they will be as advertised. Young players take time to develop, and fans are not used to seeing the Red Sox turn some of their key positions to rookies. It used to be one washed up free agent after another.
This is what a team like the Atlanta Braves used to do, and it worked very well for them. It was almost a seamless transition from star to star, and it is still early enough in the season for these two guys to figure it out.
They aren’t the second coming of Fred Lynn and Jim Rice, but they will be fine.