Boston Red Sox 3rd baseman Pablo Sandoval has been benched and for good reason – Panda hitting .087 in the month of June
It doesn’t take much for fans to get irritated by the thought of Pablo Sandoval anymore. He just can’t play his position anymore. Could be manage to play 1st base or become a DH? That’s possible but for the money they’re paying Hanley Ramirez as well, one can only wonder, what in the world were the Sox thinking when they went after this guy?
Sandoval has been a nightmare in the month of June hitting just .087. He’s got two hits in just 23 at bats and is in the midst of a 1/18 slump with a double. A .055 batting average isn’t gonna get the job done and John Farrell has finally come to his senses and finally in year number three of a five year Panda Project, he looks just about done. The Panda has six strike outs in his last 11 at bats. It’s one thing if it’s a rookie, but this isn’t the case.
Sandoval has slowly played himself out of a position. Other guys on the team are hitting the ball harder and fielding the ball better. A couple of off days aren’t going to be the only thing that helps him. It’s still possible that his injury is still lingering since coming back. While he did hit a home run in his 3rd game back, he’s simply not getting the job done. He’s missed three of the last five games.
His lack of offense isn’t being missed either. Josh Rutledge has been filling in and is also playing defense. Rutledge so far in June is hitting .300 with a double, one triple, two RBI’s and four walks. He’s also only struck out five times. He’s simply a better player than Panda right now. Will Sandoval get his starting job back this season? As long as Rutledge continues to play like this, the answer is no.
Farrell, has no more leash left for the Panda and rightfully so. He’s used it all up. We’ll always wonder why they felt they needed to get him. Travis Shaw was up and coming and was looking like the answer especially after his 2016 .242/16/71/5 slash. So far in 2017 he’s got a .298/10/42/6 line. Shaw getting traded was possibly the worst player with talent that Dave Dombrowski traded.
In the mean time, the Sox can look to Rutledge to man the hot corner. The Red Sox take on the Philadelphia Phillies for four games, the first two of which will be at Fenway Park. The Phillies have lost their last five games and 10 of their last 14. The Sox have played .500 baseball over their last 14 games.
Photo Credit – Deadspin.com