The 2023 season was not a successful one for the Red Sox, and even though Boston suffered a second-consecutive last-place finish in the American League East, it saw the emergence of Triston Casas at first base.

Even though Rafael Devers is the face of the franchise, Casas could give him a run for his money if he repeats the success he had in his rookie season.

Casas slumped for the first month of the season last year hitting .195 through the end of May, but the 24-year-old turned things around and became the second-best left-handed hitter in the Red Sox lineup behind Devers and an AL Rookie of the Year finalist convincingly.

Hitting .263 with .367 on-base and .490 slugging percentages, Casas collected 113 hits, including 24 home runs, 21 doubles and two triples in 502 plate appearances. He led the Red Sox in walks (70) and drove in 65 RBIs. Casas also posted a .856 OPS, solidifying himself as a key piece of Boston’s future.

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After the All-Star break, Casas became one of the most dangerous hitters in the big leagues with an amazing .317/.417/.617 slash line.

It wasn’t just Casas’s bat that caught fire last season at the beginning of the summer; his fielding came into its own as well, albeit he still has room to grow.

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In 125 games and 1,037 innings, Casas had a fielding percentage of .995 with 858 putouts, 95 assists, 89 double plays turned and five errors in 958 defensive chances.

On his birthday in January, the Red Sox slugger took a moment to reflect on the progression of his rookie year and left the next year as a blank slate.

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The Red Sox made sure not to rush, or give up on the 2018 first-round draft pick because they believed in his bat. It’s clear they made the right choice following his 2023 breakout performance that earned him a spot on MLB Network’s “Top 100 Right Now” list and possibly the next franchise cornerstone.

Even Devers knows how good Casas can be for the Red Sox.

“We know the type of player that he is, we know how good he is and I do believe that he’s going to be one of the best players in the league,” Devers told reporters through translator Carlos Villoria Benítez on Feb. 20, per team-provided video. “That will be something great for the organization.”

All eyes will be and should be, on Casas to see if he can build off the momentum from his rookie year and turn in a sensational sophomore campaign.

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Featured image via John Froschauer/USA TODAY Sports Images