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Red Sox 2023 Opening Day roster projection: Lineup, rotation, and bullpen

How Red Sox’ lineup, rotation, and bullpen could look in 2023 originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

The Boston Red Sox won’t be unrecognizable when they take the field for 2023 Opening Day, but they will take some getting used to.

Star shortstop Xander Bogaerts is off to the West Coast after signing an 11-year, $280 million contract with the San Diego Padres. Designated hitter J.D. Martinez is likely to leave in free agency. Left-handed reliever Matt Strahm has signed with the Philadelphia Phillies. Veteran pitchers Nathan Eovaldi, Michael Wacha, and Rich Hill remain on the open market.

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Chaim Bloom and the Red Sox front office made a handful of notable additions to the roster, but there’s more work to be done before next year’s campaign gets underway. Until then, here’s what Boston’s roster projects to look like when it takes the field on March 30.

(This post will be updated as moves are made leading into Opening Day.)


  1. LF Masataka Yoshida

  2. CF Kiké Hernandez

  3. 3B Rafael Devers

  4. SS Trevor Story

  5. DH Justin Turner

  6. RF Alex Verdugo

  7. 1B Triston Casas

  8. 2B Christian Arroyo

  9. C Reese McGuire

We can expect some changes here before the start of the 2023 season. Story is the favorite to replace Bogaerts at shortstop if no further moves are made. Turner will be the team’s primary DH with Yoshida likely spending some time in that spot as well.


C Connor Wong

1B Bobby Dalbec

OF Rob Refsnyder

Wong will split time behind the plate with Reese McGuire if the Red Sox don’t sign or trade for a catcher before Opening Day.

Dalbec reportedly was placed on the trading block this offseason, but he’ll serve as a backup first baseman/DH if he remains with the club. Refsnyder slots in as a solid fourth or fifth outfielder after being a pleasant surprise in 2022.

Starting rotation

LHP Chris Sale

RHP Nick Pivetta

RHP Garrett Whitlock

RHP Tanner Houck

RHP Brayan Bello

LHP James Paxton

At this point, Sale cannot be counted on to anchor the staff even if he’s healthy. The Red Sox should be looking to add a reliable front-end starter before Opening Day. With most of the top free-agent options off the table, they’ll likely have to shift their attention to the trade market.

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Whitlock is slated to begin the season in the rotation, where he saw mixed results in 2022. Bello will look to take a step forward after showing flashes of his high upside as a rookie. Paxton has been plagued by injuries over the last couple of years and is far from a sure bet to make an impact.


LHP Joely Rodriguez

LHP Josh Taylor

RHP Ryan Brasier

RHP Matt Barnes

RHP John Schreiber

RHP Chris Martin

RHP Kenley Jansen

The Red Sox have made a concerted effort to improve their bullpen this offseason. They’ve signed southpaw Joely Rodriguez, veteran right-hander Chris Martin, and three-time All-Star closer Kenley Jansen. That’s a significant upgrade over last season when the back of the bullpen was a flat-out mess.

Ryan Brasier still having a spot on the depth chart is a bit of a head-scratcher. Boston should look to add another left-hander to the mix, then this unit will be complete.



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