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FutureStarrThe Red Sox Will Give Rookie Triston Casas a Spot on the Major League Roster This Weekend
This weekend, the Red Sox are giving rookie Triston Casas a shot to earn his place on the major league roster. Doing so would preserve his 2023 rookie eligibility and give him an opportunity to make an impact at first base.
Last season, Casas' pregame routine that included sunbathing and taking naps annoyed some of his teammates. Chris Cotillo from MassLive tweeted this week that there had been "clashes" between veterans and Casas about his behavior.
One of the first issues to arise when a rookie enters the majors is whether his pregame routine jives with veteran players' ideas of acceptable behavior. Last year, Red Sox first baseman Triston Casas got into an argument with veteran players over his shirtless sunbathes and naps on the field before games.
Fitting in can be a frustrating experience for players trying to break into the majors, but it's something all newcomers must deal with as part of culture shock when moving from minor league baseball's relative obscurity to the bright lights of the majors.
Triston Casas was a former top prospect who spent 2022 season with Boston's Double-A and Triple-A affiliates before finally getting his chance in the majors in September. During his brief stay with Boston, Casas showed off his offensive potential by hitting.197 with five home runs in 27 games.
Though his debut season was difficult for Casas, it showed plenty of promise for his future with the Red Sox. At 22, he is now among their top 20 prospects and looks set to make his major league debut as Boston's primary first baseman this season, replacing Bobby Dalbec.
He's hit five home runs and drawn 14 walks in his first 20 career games, putting him among cavan Biggio (five homers), Michael Chavis (six homers) and Alvin Davis (nine homers) as players to have hit at least that many extra-base hits during their rookie campaigns.
Cora has great faith in Casas, so it would be surprising if the team traded him away. He's expected to become an integral part of their future and could end up being a much better first baseman than Hosmer by 2023.
Casas had to find the balance between staying true to himself and respecting his teammates' wants and needs. He no longer does yoga or sunbathes on the field before games, and takes his naps in a designated nap room.
Casas has shown a willingness to work towards finding that balance, making him an invaluable asset to the Red Sox in the long run.
So far, he's made the necessary changes that Cora asked of him. In 20 games this season, he's hit two home runs and drawn multiple walks, which has allowed him to become a better hitter and more comfortable in the lineup.
He's also demonstrated his versatility on the dirt with a two-run double in Thursday's win against the Rays. That represents an impressive improvement from his 0-for-14 streak prior to the game and further evidence of his potential as a power hitter down the line.
The Red Sox must invest in players like Casas if they hope to build a competitive big-league roster. Trades and free agent signings won't cut it - investing in future stars like Casas will be key.
On his debut in the majors, Red Sox first baseman Triston Casas got off to a strong start Sunday. He entered with an 0-2 count and swung through three pitches before striking out in the fourth inning after seeing fastballs in the 95-97 mph range. Despite these setbacks, Casas maintained his composure and showed strong work ethic throughout the contest.
No one should be surprised that making the transition from minor leagues to the majors can be daunting for any player, but especially so for players with high ceilings like Casas who could potentially become Major Leaguers within a few years. That is why Casas developed a routine in his minor league days which would help him get in the zone and ready for game day.
According to NESN's Jose Cotillo, Casas had a ritual that involved him sunbathing in the outfield before each game and then returning to his clubhouse for rest. This helped him get into the zone, and Casas continued this same routine throughout their development system.
Pregame workouts not only prepared him for the majors, but they also gave him an opportunity to get to know his teammates. Cora, who sat behind the cage with Martinez during much of Saturday, reported that Casas often approached him with questions or just words of encouragement.
He made sure to discuss with Casas how to improve his game, with particular focus on contact rate - an area of weakness he's identified in the minors.
Casas had to adjust to a different style of play in the majors, where pitchers throw with more velocity and breaking balls are sharper - two things he wasn't used to seeing as often in his minor league days.
Cora is optimistic that Casas has made progress with his pregame routine and is eager to see what he can accomplish in the Majors.
"He's very intelligent, diligent, determined and highly accomplished," Cora told NESN's Kevin Millar.
The manager also spoke to Casas about coping with hardship, emphasizing that his team will be there for him no matter what comes their way.
In the major leagues, players face a lot of stress. That's why it's essential that they remain positive; otherwise, they could find themselves in difficult circumstances and miss out on valuable opportunities.
In 2023, Major League Baseball will eliminate the shift and adjust the size of its bases. These new regulations will make each base 20 percent larger, decreasing the distance between first and second by 4.5 inches.
Another modification in the rules will require hitters to stay within 10 feet of home plate. This rule will go into effect for the 2023 season and it's expected to make the game safer.
Though it remains to be seen if these changes will be successful, it is clear that players need to stay focused on the game and avoid distractions outside of themselves. After all, their goal is to win games; therefore, mental and physical preparation are so essential for players.