Jackie Bradley, Jr., Red Sox: "Jackie Bradley Jr. Fever Grips Hub" should have been the headline across the board heading into the season as the biggest story in Fort Myers was the emergence of JBJ. the newly-acquired Jonny Gomes, who hits lefthanders much better than righties, was expected to be the left fielder until David Ortiz had a setback with his injured foot and Bradley, who was slated to start the season in Pawtucket, was the best player in camp and finished the Grapefruit League season with a sky-high OPS of 1.120, showed off his speed, and played a tidy defense all spring long. Gomes has been filling in as the DH in Ortiz's absence. A role he's more than comfortable with from his days with the Rays and A's.
Vernon Wells, Yankees: With Curtis Granderson out for at least 10 weeks with a broken arm, the Yankees went out and traded for 34-year-old former Blue Jays star turned punchless Angels outfielder Vernon Wells. Wells batted just .222 with a .667 OPS in two years in Anaheim. The Yankees will pay $11.5 million of Wells’ $21 million salary this season, then only $2.4 million next season. Light hitting but speedy Brett Gardner will also get ample in left field once Granderson returns to center.
The edge: Red Sox. Especially if JBJ and Wells stay in the same position all season.