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Will Middlebrooks is spending the offseason in Boston, close to Fenway Park and Mike Boyle’s training center. Middlebrooks wants to reclaim the Red Sox’ third base job that seemed destined for him just a year ago when he drew raves for his middle-of-the-order power.
Middlebrooks’s future may be in the hands of general manager Ben Cherington, who could opt to shift Xander Bogaerts to third if he acquires a veteran shortstop or re-signs Stephen Drew. And don’t forget third base prospect Garin Cecchini, who hit a combined .322 at Single A Salem and Double A Portland this past season.
Cherington believes the position could wind up being the Sox’ biggest strength. “We think, if we do nothing, we’ll get more out of third base than we did this year,” he said.