March 11, 2012; Sarasota, FL, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester (31) throws in the first inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Ed Smith Stadium. The Red Sox defeated the Orioles 6 - 1. Mandatory Credit: Joy R. Absalon-US PRESSWIRE
Some news, notes and analysis from the Boston Red Sox:
- New manager Bobby Valentine has named Jon Lester as the team's opening day starter. The Red Sox lefty had a 3.47 ERA in 31 starts in 2011. Lester also started opening day in 2011. The Red Sox open their season April 5th in Detroit, as Lester will oppose 2011 Cy Young and MVP winner Justin Verlander.
- Fangraph's Bill Petti takes an in-depth look at the evolution of Red Sox first basemen Adrian Gonzalez. The first part of a two part series, Petti breaks down Gonzalez's pitch selection and wonders if the change from Petco Park to Fenway has changed his approach.
- Marc Normandin at Over The Monster examines Kevin Youkilis' production and injury history. Youkilis has been one of the most underrated players during his career, but has struggled to stay healthy the last few years, averaging 119 games a season over the last three years. The Red Sox have to decide soon what they're going to do with their "Greek God of Walks."
- Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal says most likely Mike Aviles will be the Red Sox starting shortstop. MacPherson looks over Aviles' shortstop defense history since High School. The years of setbacks and learning have helped develop Aviles' defense, although MacPherson notes Jose Iglesias is still the better defensive shortstop.
- Check out the Boston Red Sox Complete Organizational Chart. Be the first on your block, all your friends will be jealous.