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Inbox: JBJ trade a possibility in offseason?

Beat reporter Ian Browne answers questions from Red Sox fans
October 30, 2017

Do you see the Red Sox trading Jackie Bradley Jr. to sign J.D. Martinez to play left field, as well as signing an impact bat at first base such as Eric Hosmer or Carlos Santana? -- @J_SAB34It could happen. Bradley is an elite center fielder who would be attractive to

Do you see the Red Sox trading Jackie Bradley Jr. to sign J.D. Martinez to play left field, as well as signing an impact bat at first base such as Eric Hosmer or Carlos Santana?
-- @J_SAB34

It could happen. Bradley is an elite center fielder who would be attractive to a lot of other teams, and the Red Sox could get something for him to help fill another need on the club.
Crystal-ball gazing, what's the Opening Day starting lineup against Tampa Bay?
-- @keiranmbellis

Eduardo Nunez 2B, Andrew Benintendi LF, Mookie Betts RF, Hosmer 1B, Martinez DH, Rafael Devers 3B, Xander Bogaerts SS, Bradley CF, Christian Vazquez C.
Obviously, this would entail going way over the luxury tax, but if we've learned anything this October, it's that you now need a heavy-hitting lineup to have legitimate championship aspirations. The Red Sox finished last in the American League in homers in 2017 with 168. It's no coincidence that the Yankees and Astros, the two teams who played in the AL Championship Series, ranked 1-2.
Martinez, with a right-handed swing built for Fenway, could quickly help Boston climb up the rankings in this department. He clubbed 45 homers in 2017, third to Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge. Hosmer is a left-handed hitter who has power to the opposite field -- something that would play well in Fenway. The Red Sox also have several players capable of hitting more home runs than they did last year, including Betts, Bogaerts and Hanley Ramirez. Manager Alex Cora will soon name a new hitting coach, and it won't be surprising if the Red Sox start focusing more on launch angle as an organization.
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Think the Red Sox will make a run at Jacob Arrieta?
-- @BigSexy_22

My hunch is that president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski will go all in on the offense this winter, and if there are still needs in the starting rotation, he will be more likely to address those by midseason.
Is David Ortiz even a consideration for hitting coach?
-- @oxypez

No. Ortiz has far too many interests in his post-career life to take on the rigors of being a full-time coach on the Major League staff. As you've seen during this postseason, Big Papi is having a lot of fun with his studio-analyst role. He also has many business ventures. Players who spend two decades in the game don't often want to get right back into it as a full-time coach.
With Cora on board, would you expect Rusney Castillo to be put on the 40-man roster?
-- @ogp44

Look for Castillo to get an invite to Spring Training like he did last year. Given the luxury-tax implications of putting Castillo back on the roster, I don't see him making the club as a backup. Castillo does serve as insurance if anyone suffers a significant injury and Cora did manage Castillo in winter ball, so it will be interesting to see how that relationship evolves.
Best guess at starting rotation at the beginning of the season?
-- @KPD_1895

Chris Sale, David Price, Thomas Pomeranz, Rick Porcello, Steven Wright.
Other than a power bat, what's the biggest move the Red Sox should make?
-- @zacsimoneau

They need to re-sign free agent Nunez. This would have been a priority even if Dustin Pedroia didn't have surgery that will keep him out the first couple of months of the season. Without Pedroia, it's vital the Red Sox retain Nunez for his bat at the top of the order.

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.