Pablo Sandoval Tweaks Back Diving For Ball, Will Miss A Few Games

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Boston Red Sox infielder Pablo Sandoval

Photo via Boston Red Sox infielder Pablo Sandoval warms up before the start of the spring training game against the Tampa Bay Rays at JetBlue Park. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

Travis Shaw is going to get a chance to gain some momentum in his competition for the Boston Red Sox’s starting third base job.

Pablo Sandoval is suffering some back stiffness after diving to make a backhanded play in Tuesday’s 3-0 loss to the Miami Marlins and will be sidelined for a few games, manager John Farrell told reporters, per the Boston Herald’s Jason Mastrodonato. However, Farrell also said at this point he’s not concerned Sandoval will start the season on the disabled list.

It’s unclear how this will affect who starts at third base on Opening Day, but it definitely will give Shaw some time to show off. The 25-year-old already is batting .450 (18-for-40) with a 1.188 OPS, two home runs and nine RBIs in 14 games and has been performing well defensively. Sandoval is batting .265 with an .864 OPS, two home runs and six RBIs, but it should be noted that he had a .290 average before the Marlins pitchers collectively one-hit the Red Sox on Tuesday.

The competition with Shaw definitely was making Sandoval a better player, so it will be interesting to see how his injury affects things if he’s better before spring training ends. Sandoval spent most of Wednesday receiving treatment on his back and will do the same Thursday while Shaw starts at third against the New York Mets.

Thumbnail photo via Jonathan Dyer/USA TODAY Sports Images

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