Red Sox finalize 2024 Opening Day roster

March 28th, 2024

The Red Sox recently made their biggest roster decision of Spring Training when manager Alex Cora informed center fielder Ceddanne Rafaela, MLB Pipeline’s No. 76 overall prospect, that he will break camp with the club.

Another decision was made on Monday night, when lefty Brennan Bernardino was optioned to Triple-A Worcester. The Sox will go with seven righties and one lefty in the bullpen.

Boston made it official on Thursday: Its roster is set for Opening Day. Here is a look at the 26 players announced to be active for Thursday's opener in Seattle.

Catcher (2): ,
Wong proved himself defensively last season, but only produced offensively in brief bursts. McGuire is a capable backup who holds his own as a left-handed pinch-hitter.

First baseman (1):
Casas looks poised to build on his solid rookie season, and showed he might be able to produce more even against lefties this season when he hit a mammoth homer against Carlos Rodón at George M. Steinbrenner Field on March 13.

Second baseman (1):
With Vaughn Grissom out indefinitely (left groin strain), Valdez seems like the logical choice to get the bulk of playing time at second early in the season, at least against right-handed pitching. The Red Sox like his bat, and hope that the work he did defensively in the offseason translates once the regular season starts.

Shortstop (1):
Year 3 for Story in Boston is one in which he should at last be healthy from the start. Story’s impact on defense should be significant, considering the struggles the Sox had in the infield last season. His presence at the plate will be just as important.

Third baseman (1):
The most impactful hitter on the team hopes to be more consistent this season, especially on defense.

Outfielders (5): , , , ,
On the club’s second-to-last day in Florida, Cora announced that Rafaela earned a roster spot. The dynamic defender will get most of his playing time in center field, but might also get some innings at second base and shortstop. Yoshida will spend most of his time at DH. The Sox are excited about the athleticism of Duran and O’Neill on defense, not to mention Abreu’s cannon arm.

Bench/Utility (2): ,
Reyes can play all over the infield, recently adding first base to his toolbox. He could get his share of starts at second base against lefties while Grissom is out. Dalbec beat out veteran non-roster invitee C.J. Cron for the right-handed bat off the bench because he has much more versatility on defense. Dalbec can play first and third, and gained experience in the outfield in camp. Cora has also used him at second base in the past.

Starting Pitchers (5): , , , ,
The loss of Lucas Giolito (right elbow surgery), Boston’s most significant offseason addition, is going to be tough to endure for the Red Sox. Pivetta is now the only veteran in the rotation and the 24-year-old Bello is being counted on as the ace. Cooper Criswell was the odd man out once Whitlock and Houck earned the final two spots in the rotation. Criswell will get stretched out as a starter in Triple-A.

Relief Pitchers (8): , , , , , , ,
Jansen and Martin are a solid and battle-tested 1-2 combo at the back end. The trade of John Schreiber to the Royals has created more of an opportunity for Rule 5 Draft righty Slaten to become Whitlock 2.0. Campbell, acquired from the Mariners in an offseason trade, also made the club and will open against his former team. Rodríguez won the lefty reliever competition as a non-roster invitee. Anderson, signed at the end of Spring Training, will provide length out of the bullpen and possible insurance for the rotation if there’s an injury. Weissert, acquired from the Yankees for Alex Verdugo back in December, earned his way onto the roster and has drawn comparisons to Schreiber.