With the off-season just underway, minds already begin to wander towards next year. Talk radio is fueling the debate of who the Red Sox starting firstbaseman will be. If you believe the speculation that there is not room on the team for Millar and Mientkiewicz, Theo has a pretty tough decision to make.
Looking at the numbers, Millar played in a mind-boggling 150 games, earning 508 at-bats.
18 HR, 74 RBI, 57 BB, 91 K’s, .297/.383/.474
Minty obviously split time between Minnesota and Boston. Total games played was 127 with 391 at-bats.
6 HR, 35 RBI, 48 BB, 56 K’s, .238/.315/.350
The offensive production is no contest, although their career numbers are a bit closer.
In terms of defense, it is also no contest. Minty has a career .996 fielding percentage and is a gold-glove winner. Millar is a career .991 fielder with less range.
And of course there is the all-important “intangibles”. Millar is the poster child for clubhouse presence. His “Cowboy Up”, “Karaoke Rally-Guy”, ever-changing facial hair, Manny backrubs and pregame JD shots cannot be disputed as factors in uniting this team and keeping the atmosphere loose. The one negative was the infamous “El Bencho” comment when he was given a day off.
Mientkiewicz is the polar opposite of Millar. He is quiet and reserved, seemingly content with letting his glove do the talking for him.
Personally, I’ll take defense. I also think Minty has potential to get his offensive numbers up playing in this line-up. I can’t discount the extended slumps Millar had over the past two years, or the errors he wasn’t charged with when he didn’t get to balls or couldn’t dig out a throw.
I throw it out to the Red Sox faithful. Assuming two $3.5 million dollar firstbasemen won’t be on the roster, which one is?