The Boston Red Sox will be without outfielder Andrew Benintendi for the remainder of the 2020 MLB season, manager Ron Roenicke announced Tuesday. Benintendi, who hasn't played since Aug. 11 because of a strained rib cage, will instead be given ample time to heal and reset.
Benintendi, much like everyone else, would be doing well to distance himself from 2020. In his 14 games this season, he went 4 for 39 with a resulting slash line of .103/.314/.218 (25 OPS+). Our Mike Axisa covered Benintendi's struggles last month. Here's part of that article:
His contact quality this season is dreadful as well. Benintendi's 82.8 mph average exit velocity and 22.2 percent hard-hit rate both rank in the bottom four percent of the league. So, when he's not swinging through center-cut heaters, he's making weak contact. Not great!
Benintendi, who turned 26 in July, will now shift his focus to 2021. He's scheduled to hit free agency the winter after next, making the upcoming year a pivotal one for him if he wants to reestablish his value heading into his walk year. For Bentintendi's career, he's accumulated 9.7 Wins Above Replacement and a 107 OPS+ in 485 big-league games.
The Red Sox entered Tuesday with a 14-28 record on the season; suffice to say, their playoff odds were by and large unaffected by the news. Since trading Kevin Pillar at the deadline, they've been using an outfield consisting of Jackie Bradley Jr. and Alex Verdugo, with a rotating cast of left fielders filling in for Benintendi, including Yairo Munoz and Tzu-Wei Lin.
One storyline worth watching the rest of the way is whether or not Boston gives any playing time to prospect Jarren Duran. He's reportedly made improvements to his swing this year at the alternate site, and he entered the spring ranked by CBS Sports as their No. 4 prospect.