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Red Sox at Pirates Lineups: Brian Johnson’s 2019 debut

And a starting nod for Bobby Dalbec

MLB: New York Yankees at Boston Red Sox Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

The Red Sox hit the road for their game against the Pirates on Monday, and with the travels come a much less interesting lineup than the one we saw on Sunday. This game is going to feature a couple of regulars making the trip up to Bradenton, but for the most part the lineup is filled with minor leaguers.

We will, however, get to see someone who should be on the Opening Day roster make the start in Brian Johnson. Since the Red Sox are taking it easy with their five main rotation members after their big October workload, it’s not very often we’ll get to see intriguing starters in early spring games. Johnson is at least going to compete for a roster spot, though. In fact, if I had to guess I’d assume he’ll be the sixth starter at the beginning of the year when they extend the rotation for the first turn through. The lefty is out of options, though, so he has something to pitch for. If he performs poorly in camp and a few other arms step up their games, there’s at least an outside chance he’ll find himself on the outside looking in. That said, it’s unlikely with Steven Wright being a full-time reliever in 2019.

As for the position players, there’s not a lot of big names. The catcher battle continues in the two and three spots in the lineup, with Blake Swihart getting the nod behind the plate and Sandy León holding it down at DH. Those are the only two realistic Opening Day roster members, though. A little further down the lineup Bobby Dalbec will make another start at third base as he tries to continue his hot start to camp. Tate Matheny also gets rewarded for his big day on Sunday with a start in right field.

Here are the full lineups:

Red Sox at Twins, 3/22

Lineup Spot Red Sox Twins
Lineup Spot Red Sox Twins
1 Andrew Benintendi, LF Max Kepler, RF
2 Eduardo Núñez, 2B Jorge Polanco, SS
3 Rafael Devers, 3B Nelson Cruz, DH
4 J.D. Martinez, DH Eddie Rosario, LF
5 Xander Bogaerts, SS C.J. Cron, 1B
6 Mitch Moreland, 1B Marwin Gonzalez, 3B
7 Jackie Bradley Jr., CF Jonathan Schoop, 2B
8 Christian Vázquez, C Jason Castro, C
9 Gorkys Hernández, RF Byron Buxton, CF
SP Dan Runzler, LHP Kyle Gibson, RHP

Unfortunately, today’s game won’t be broadcast on TV. You can, however, tune in on the radio if you are so inclined. It’ll air on 850 AM WEEI this afternoon.