FORT MYERS, Fla. — Nothing is set in stone, but the Boston Red Sox’s 2014 rotation is taking shape.
Manager John Farrell indicated Monday that the club’s current spring training rotation could be what the unit looks like when the Red Sox break camp in less than three weeks. That means Jon Lester would start Opening Day and be followed, in order, by John Lackey, Felix Doubront, Jake Peavy and Clay Buchholz.
Now, let’s be clear. Farrell didn’t announce this as his official rotation. The Red Sox skipper even declined to announce Lester as his Opening Day starter when asked if he was ready to do so following the left-hander’s three shutout innings against the Tampa Bay Rays on Monday. However, if you read between the lines, it’s reasonable to think the order of starters will be Lester-Lackey-Doubront-Peavy-Buchholz when the regular season kicks off in Baltimore on March 31.
Farrell said Monday that Peavy’s setback stemming from a lacerated finger did not cause the Red Sox to reshuffle their rotation. Peavy currently is scheduled to start Thursday’s spring training game against the Twins — after Lester, Lackey and Doubront, and before Buchholz.
“All things playing out, health and otherwise, yeah, that’s kind of the way things are rolling,” Farrell said when asked if the current order of starters is an indication of what the Red Sox’s rotation will look like to begin the regular season.
The biggest surprise, obviously, is Buchholz currently being slotted in as the No. 5 starter. Things have a tendency to fluctuate throughout the season, though, and it’s worth noting that Boston does have a couple of off days in April that could facilitate movement within the Red Sox’s rotation.
Farrell said Chris Capuano, Brandon Workman and Allen Webster will continue to start games with the major league club during spring training. Drake Britton, who has had a strong camp, also will be stretched out, although not to the extent of the others.