Nearly a month into the 2014 season Stephen Drew remains available on the open market, without any clear opportunities on his immediate horizon. The veteran shortstop could serve as an infield upgrade for multiple teams, none of whom are willing to part with a draft pick in this coming June’s amateur draft after Drew received (and turned down) a qualifying offer from the Boston Red Sox this past offseason.
Not even Boston, who wouldn’t have to part with a pick, appears to have interest in a reunion.
The Red Sox have seen multiple questions arise in their own infield this month and yet, as WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford reports, the team has not held any discussions with Drew or his agent, Scott Boras, about a potential return. In fact, as Bradford notes, the team hasn’t even considered making such a move despite multiple opportunities to do so.
Third baseman Will Middlebrooks has already had a three week sting on the disabled list, thanks to a calf strain. Instead of looking to Drew the team instead opted to sign Ryan Roberts to a free agent deal. When Roberts didn’t work out as they’d hoped, they instead gave the playing time to Brock Holt who made the most of the opportunity. Now, with Middlebrooks back in the lineup, both Roberts and Holt find themselves back down at Triple-A where neither is guaranteed to be in the lineup daily.
Even with the inconsistencies shown by Xander Bogaerts, Drew’s name has yet to be seriously discussed in Boston. Bogaerts, much of the reason behind Boston’s decision to let Drew walk as a free agent this winter, has experienced some growing pains in the field. There is still a belief that he’ll grow into the position, lending little reason for the Red Sox to panic.
Drew remains on the open market despite being an obvious fit for multiple teams – specifically the New York Mets and/or Detroit Tigers, though others have/will enter the mix. Numerous reports have suggested that he (along with Kendrys Morales, who is far less discussed than Drew despite being in a similar situation) will wait until after the draft (June 5-7) to sign, as he won’t cost his team a draft pick. It’s tough to predict what kind of contract Drew might be facing at that point in time, in terms of both dollars and years, but he’ll surely draw some interest as the dates begin to draw nearer.
Drew hit .253/.333/.443 across 501 PA this past season, following two seasons shortened by injuries, and he was solid in the field. He failed to swing the bat well during Boston’s postseason run (just 6 hits in 57 AB), but could still figure into a potential playoff contender’s run this year depending on where he ends up signing in the coming weeks.