The Boston Red Sox have had enough of their struggles. They have finally decided to make a move in order to shake up the roster. The club has decided to option 1B/OF Allen Craig to Triple-A Pawtucket for the time being as reported by Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald. Craig cannot refuse the assignment because he has less than five years of service time and plenty of minor league options left on his contract. In exchange for sending him down, the club has recalled outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. to take Craig’s spot on the roster for the time being.
It’s a very humbling moment for him. The right-handed hitting outfielder and first baseman inked a five-year, $31 million with the St. Louis Cardinals back in 2013. That was also a career year for him as well as he put a blazing .315/.373/.830 batting line as well as knocking in a career best 97 RBIs for the club. His strength wasn’t hitting home runs but getting clutch hits at the right time and was a key part in propelling them to the 2013 World Series.
Unfortunately things took an ugly turn for him as he scuffled in 2014 with the Cardinals. He was struggling so mightily that the Cardinals decided to cut ties with him and ship him alongside right-handed pitcher Joe Kelly to the Red Sox at the deadline in exchange for right-handed veteran pitcher John Lackey. He ended playing very little the rest of the way for the Red Sox as he dealt with injuries throughout the rest of the season.
Coming into 2015, he was expected to be valuable bat off the bench as the Red Sox were willing to go with an outfield consisting of Hanley Ramirez, Mookie Betts and Shane Victorino. Coming off the bench hasn’t worked too well for Craig as he has scuffled again and managed to hit only .135/.237/.192 throughout only 24 games so far this season. A reason for his struggles so far could be that he’s not getting enough at-bats and is struggling to find his rhythm. His name has been on the trading block for sometime as well due to the Red Sox having an overcrowded outfield and infield. The Red Sox may be sending him down so when he finally does get himself in a rhythm he can demonstrate his value and up his trade price. Despite his struggles, should Craig re-find his swing could easily be a key bat in any lineup for any team with postseason aspirations.
Written by: Daniel Sherriff