Boston Red Sox: Ranking the top 10 players from 2010s
By Drew Athans
The least surprising entry on this list, Mookie Betts was quite simply the best Red Sox player of the decade and the best complete player they’ve produced since Carl Yastrzemski sixty years ago. First debuting in the majors in 2014, Mookie blossomed into a five-tool player who was one of the best not only on the Red Sox, but in the entire league.
Since looking at his career statistics alone don’t tell the whole story, let’s break them out by season.
2014: .291 BA, 5 HR, 18 RBI, 55 H, 34 R, 21 BB, .368 OBP, .821 OPS (52 games)
2015: .291 BA, 18 R, 77 RBI, 174 H, 92 R, 46 BB, .341 OBP, .820 OPS (145 games)
2016: .318 BA, 31 HR, 113 RBI, 214 H, 122 R, 49 BB, .363 OBP, .897 OPS (158 games)
2017: .264 BA, 24 HR, 102 RBI, 166 H, 101 R, 77 BB, .344 OBP, .803 OPS (153 games)
2018: .346 BA, 32 HR, 80 RBI, 180 H, 129 R, 81 BB, .438 OBP, 1.078 OPS (136 games)
2019: .295 BA, 29 HR, 80 RBI, 176 H, 135 R, 97 BB, .391 OBP, .915 OPS (150 games)
Those are fantastic numbers! In 2016 Betts came in second to Mike Trout in the AL MVP voting and honestly, he probably should have won that year. He did win the AL MVP in 2018 as well as the batting title. He also led the league in runs scored that year (as well as in 2019). While his struggles batting in the postseason are well-known, he’s more than made up for it with his defense.
Evoking memories of Dwight Evans, Mookie mastered the cavernous right field at Fenway Park with all of its weird angles and quirks. He won four straight Gold Gloves from 2016 to 2019 and was also an All Star those four years. He was the face of the franchise and the Red Sox trading him in his prime to the Dodgers for pennies on the dollar (in his walk year, to be fair) and the way they handled it will be a blight on the team for years to come.
Players like Mookie Betts don’t come around that often and while he’s gone long before he should have been due to the Red Sox lack of foresight, he certainly made his mark in Boston during the six seasons he was here.