Will Middlebrooks’ trip to the disabled list added yet another issue to the left side of the Red Sox’s infield. But it doesn’t appear Stephen Drew is on the verge of walking through Boston’s clubhouse door.
An industry source told WEEI.com’s Alex Speier that there has not yet been any engagement between the Red Sox and Drew about the idea of the free-agent shortstop potentially returning to Boston.
Speier cautions that things are subject to change — industry sources reportedly told him that the Red Sox’s current infield situation has defined a clearer role for Drew with the Red Sox — but it appears, for the time being, that the trio of Xander Bogaerts, Jonathan Herrera and Brock Holt will hold down the left side of the Red Sox’s infield in Middlebrooks’ absence.
Middlebrooks’ DL stint stemming from a fractured right index finger is just one of several issues that could sway the Red Sox to reconsider Drew. Boston’s defense has been spotty, Bogaerts has endured growing pains and Middlebrooks has struggled against right-handed pitching even when healthy. It’s also looking less and less likely that the Red Sox will garner a compensatory draft pick for losing Drew, as any team that signs him after the June draft no longer will need to the relinquish the draft pick currently required by virtue of the qualifying offer Boston made at the beginning of free agency.
If the Red Sox are ever going to reengage Drew about a potential return, now could be the time, although conversations reportedly haven’t begun just yet.