Boston Red Sox: Grading the team after their fast 2021 start
The Red Sox have the best DH in baseball
At least there will be no J.D. Martinez opt-out discussion for the offseason. Martinez is back in expected form and the Red Sox have the best DH in the baseball business. Martinez is not only a solid power hitter but a solid batsman who flirts each season with a .300+ average. A far cry from the .213 of 2020.
This season, Martinez will inevitably finish in the top three in home runs and RBI. On the metrics front, his 182 wRC+ should also hover around that number throughout 2021. Martinez could duplicate his first season in Boston when the right-hander slash .330/.402/.629 and led the AL with 130 RBI and smacked 43 home runs.
Martinez’s hitting has seen him take to the glove when the DH rule is scuttled when playing in the National League. Martinez is no gazelle in the outfield but when you hit like he does the occasional mental lapse is an acceptable exchange.
Right now the big change in the Red Sox offense from 2020 is Martinez. You can’t pitch around him with Bogaerts and Devers in the wings. Both are comparable RBI machines. No day-to-day DH by committee with Boston.