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Red Sox vs. Twins lineups: Here’s (basically) the Opening Day lineup

We have a glimpse of what the lineup card could look like when the Red Sox open their season.

MLB: Spring Training-Toronto Blue Jays at Boston Red Sox Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

We’re in the home stretch of spring training, and with the roster getting trimmed down we’re getting closer and closer to seeing lineups full of regulars on the field. On Sunday, the Red Sox will pretty much have that. This lineup is likely extremely close to the one we’ll see on April 3.

  1. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  2. Andrew Benintendi, LF
  3. Mookie Betts, RF
  4. Hanley Ramirez, DH
  5. Mitch Moreland, 1B
  6. Xander Bogaerts, SS
  7. Jackie Bradley, CF
  8. Pablo Sandoval, 3B
  9. Christian Vazquez, C

Starting Pitcher: Chris Sale

There are a couple differences here than what we can expect on Opening Day. The first is that Christian Vazquez is starting behind the plate. The defensive whiz is almost certainly going to make the Opening Day roster and will get a good chunk of the playing time behind the plate, but Sandy Leon will be there to start the year. The other difference is the starting pitcher. Chris Sale is the best pitcher on this team, but Rick Porcello earned the Opening Day nod and rightfully received it.

Besides that, though, it appears this is where John Farrell wants to start the year. All spring, we’ve heard they wanted to put Benintendi so high in the lineup despite his lack of experience. It looks like they’re sticking to that plan, and for good reason. I’d swap Betts and Benintendi, but that’s picking nits.

The one real issue I have is putting Mitch Moreland in the number five spot. He’s one of the three worst hitters in this lineup, so having him there is a little strange. I understand wanting to split up the righties and lefties, but even if that’s the idea why not put Jackie Bradley there and Moreland in the seventh hole? Complaining about lineup order on a day-to-day lineup is kind of gauche and I hate myself for doing it, but I have no self-control.

You can catch this one on NESN or listen to it on WEEI.

EDIT: Might help if I mention that the game starts at 1:05 PM ET.