Boston Red Sox: A Position-by-Position Breakdown at Spring Training

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Boston Red Sox: A Position-by-Position Breakdown at Spring Training
Steven Senne/Associated Press
The Boston Red Sox stand poised in 2014 to defend their World Series title.

With Opening Day 2014 just over a month away, the defending champion Boston Red Sox are preparing for yet another World Series title defense—the third in the last 10 years.

The Red Sox have enjoyed both a quiet and tumultuous offseason—contrasting terms that in many ways describe Boston's prospects entering spring training.

There were some free agent departures.  There were some signings.  There was buzz about rookies and prospects.  There was also buzz about contract extensions.

All in all, it would appear like any other preseason around the league.

Yet one thing that sets the Red Sox apart from the majority of MLB teams is the expectations.

The first thing a team wants to do following a World Series championship is to back it up by winning another.  There is no questioning that.  Yet repeating as champs is a tough thing to do in this day and age.  Following a relatively quiet offseason in terms of acquisitions, is this Red Sox team capable of achieving that lofty goal?

Will general manager Ben Cherington's formula pay dividends again in 2014?

Cherington and the Red Sox are putting their faith into a variety of elements that comprise this team.  First and foremost, Boston shall rely on their solid core of stars that helped this franchise transform from worst to first last season.

Guys like David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, Mike Napoli and Jon Lester shall continue to be at the heart of the Red Sox organization.

But one cannot overlook the eventual transformation the team is beginning to implement this season.  Budding stars like Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr. are vying to have a substantial impact in 2014 and will assuredly be counted upon to become cornerstones in future seasons.

These players and more shall make up the product known as Red Sox baseball in 2014. 

So what should we expect moving forward through spring training?

In this slideshow, let us take a look at a position-by-position breakdown of the Boston Red Sox, paying close attention to the expectation level described above as well as any other pertinent information that may have sizable impact.

For the sake of clarity, we shall use the Red Sox's depth chart provided by CBS Sports.

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