Pablo Sandoval is a three-time World Series a champion, a former World Series MVP and a two-time All-Star.
He’s also, at 29, eating himself out of the league.
The Red Sox third baseman was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday with a shoulder issue. The 5-11 Sandoval, who weighs more than 250 pounds, signed a five-year, $95 million contract with Boston in November 2014.
This year, he is 0-for-6 with four strikeouts.
“(The Red Sox have) had some bad contracts in recent years, but they’ve figured out a way to get around a lot of those – but I don’t know what they could do with this one,” Boston Globe Red Sox beat writer Pete Abraham said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “The thing that I think is the most disappointing is he was coming off a bad year last year and so was Hanley Ramirez. But Hanley Ramirez came into camp, he had a good attitude, he lost a few pounds, he embraced going to first base and he’s been pretty good for the first week of the season. There’s some positive things coming out of Hanley Ramirez, and they hoped that the same thing would happen with Sandoval, that he would come off the bad year last year (and) come in with a good attitude. Dave Dombrowski is running the team, there’s a lot of optimism with the young guys. They thought, ‘He’s going to come in and be part of the program. It’ll work out.’ It just hasn’t been good since the start of spring training. He didn’t hit in spring training and he doesn’t really have anywhere to play now.”
Sandoval, a career .287 hitter, had career-lows in average (.245) and OBP (.292) last season and finished with the fewest home runs (10), RBIs (47), walks (25) and runs (43) since his rookie season in 2008, when he played just 41 games. He lost his starting job to Travis Shaw this spring and has barely played.
The Boston faithful, well, they’re not happy about it.
“It’s brutal,” Abraham said. “This is a guy that they’re taking out their frustrations on. He gets hammered everywhere on social media. He was the only guy that got booed at the home-opener on Monday. It’s a bad scene. When you’re booing a guy at the home-opener, there’s nowhere to go from there. It’s not as bad as I would say it was for Carl Crawford a few years ago – because that was another contract that really went south on them – but it’s getting to that point where any time he sticks his head out of the dugout, he gets booed.”