Valentine sidesteps question of what to do with Middlebrooks

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Valentine sidesteps question of what to do with Middlebrooks

BOSTON -- Kevin Youkilis's impending return raises the question about what the Sox will do with Will Middlebrooks.

The rookie third baseman has had an impact in 10 games, hitting .310 with 4 homers and 13 RBI in 10 games. He has an OBP of .356 and a slugging percentage of .714.

"I think that's a little premature,'' said manager Bobby Valentine. "We'll do exactly what's right. Those things usually play themselves out. There's no need to make a decision until it's time to make a decision.''

Valentine was asked whether, in general, he believes young players are better off playing regularly at the minor league level as opposed to sitting on the bench in the big leagues, getting only occasional at-bats.

"Sitting on the bench is not a good place for very many players,'' said Valentine, "especially good young, talented players. What would be the purpose of having someone sitting the bench unless there was a useful purpose for him, not being in the starting role but also being able to contribute to the team wins? Now, is there a place for him to do that? I'm not sure."

Boomer Esiason witnessed Pete Rose hire people to sign autographs

Boomer Esiason witnessed Pete Rose hire people to sign autographs

Boomer Esiason tells Toucher & Rich a story from his early days in Cincinnati when he witnessed Pete Rose overseeing five guys he paid to sign a stack of photographs for fans.

Report: Red Sox eye ex-Oriole Pedro Alvarez for DH slot

Report: Red Sox eye ex-Oriole Pedro Alvarez for DH slot

The Red Sox have more or less withdrawn from the Edwin Encarnacion sweepstakes, with Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald noting that much of their reluctance hinges on the likelihood that they’d exceed the new $195 million luxury tax threshold by locking the DH into a lucrative deal. That doesn’t leave them without options, however, and FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported that the club could be interested in 29-year-old corner infielder Pedro Alvarez, as well as fellow free agents Mike Napoli and Matt Holliday.

After playing just 10 games at DH from 2010 to 2015, Alvarez suited up as the Orioles’ primary designated hitter and part-time third baseman in 2016. His defense is sub-par, to say the least, but he batted .249/.322/.504 with 22 home runs for Baltimore in 2016.

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