Fantasy baseball gurus beware: Travis Shaw is now the Boston Red Sox starting third baseman. You can find Pablo Sandoval on the bench.

By Dustin Shull

John Farrell announced that Travis Shaw, not $95 million man Pablo Sandoval, would be the Boston Red Sox opening day starting third baseman. Just the latest installment of the Red Sox long list of big contracts that are not going how they and fans had hoped.

Sandoval’s weight and fielding issues (four errors in 15 games) have become a concern for the team and have ultimately doomed him and his large contract have been subjected to the bench.

This is coming just days after Rusney Castillo (five years $72.5 million) was made the third left fielder behind Chris Young and Brock Holt.

It is very frustrating for fantasy baseball owners that drafted or kept Sandoval expecting him to be in the starting lineup. Although, Shaw (if available) is a guy that you will want to add to your lineup. He has had a very solid spring offensively, hitting two home runs with nine runs batted in. Add in his .333 batting average and Shaw shows you that he knows how to hit. Look back at 2015, his rookie season, when Shaw filled in late in year and see that he was very productive then as well. He had 13 home runs and 36 RBIs in 226 official at bats.

He is also less of a liability at third as he plays the position very well and is far more athletic than Sandoval.

“It’s the right decision,” said Sandoval, who understands that Shaw had a great spring training and is clearly the better choice for the team. Look for Boston to either implement a wait-and-see approach, deciding in Shaw if he produces or going with Kung-Fu Panda at third.

If Shaw stays hot and holds onto the starting job, look for Dombrowski to work hard to trade Sandoval to someone that could use him in their starting lineup, thus making him a relevant player for your fantasy lineup again.

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