FORT MYERS, Fla. — Red Sox officials are discussing the merits of outfielder Brennan Boesch, who was released by the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday.
If Boesch clears release waivers — which seems likely given that a team would have to pick up his $2.3 million contract — he would become a free agent.
According to a team source, the Red Sox would make a play for Boesch if they conclude he represents a sure upgrade to the players they have in camp now.
The 27-year-old lefthanded hittter was a regular in right field last season for Detroit. He had a .240/.286/.372 line with 12 home runs, 54 RBIs, and six stolen bases. Boesch is a career .259/.315/.414 hitter over three seasons. He has experience in both corner outfield positions.
The Red Sox have Shane Victorino in right field and Jonny Gomes in left. But with David Ortiz surely headed to the disabled list, the players on the bench will take on a greater significance given the team's plans to use a rotating designated hitter.
The Red Sox have Daniel Nava, Ryan Sweeney, Mitch Maier, and Mike Carp in camp competing for a roster spot. Jackie Bradley Jr., a 23-year-old prospect, has been the talk of spring training but will likely start the season in the minors.
Boesch has better statistics against lefthanders in his career, which doesn't exactly fit the profile of what the Red Sox need off the bench. He has hit .250/.305/.412 hitter against righthanders.
The Astros, Mets and Yankees are among the teams with at least some interest in Boesch.