It is expected this offseason that Red Sox third baseman Adrian Beltre will turn down his $10 million player option and opt for free agency.
If he does this, the Red Sox will be without a third baseman.
The team could attempt to re-sign him through free agency, but will have to compete with other teams to do so.
And if Beltre decides to decline a one-year, $10 million option, he might be looking at more money than Boston is willing to deal out.
There is no doubt that last season, Beltre was consistently one of the best players on the Red Sox roster, one that was plagued with injury.
But if the price on Beltre goes too high the Red Sox do have other options.
The one that makes a lot of sense to me would be to sign Adam Dunn and move Kevin Youkilis over to third.
Sure, you lose a little bit on the defensive end of the spectrum, but Dunn brings Manny-type power to the plate that could help protect DH David Ortiz (another player the Sox need to re-sign).
Of course, the corners are just one area the Sox need to address this offseason. There were several games in which the bullpen let the team down, and those games they let slip away could have amounted to a playoff berth.
Expect this hot stove season to be a busy one for Boston. Whether the Red Sox are addressing needs or simply trying to block the Yankees, we should see the most action since 2003-2004.