The Boston Red Sox have reportedly shifted their free-agent focus to former Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story after Freddie Freeman agreed to a contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Jon Heyman of MLB Network reported Thursday the Red Sox are "taking a look" at Story, who would play second base in Boston with Xander Bogaerts entrenched at short, but they face competition from the Houston Astros, Minnesota Twins, St. Louis Cardinals and others.
Story spent the past six years patrolling shortstop for the Rockies. He compiled a .272/.340/.523 slash line with 158 home runs and 100 stolen bases across 745 appearances for Colorado.
The 29-year-old Texas native is coming off a 2021 season where he posted an .801 OPS with 24 homers and 20 steals in 142 games. He ranked 12th among shortstops in WAR (3.5), per FanGraphs.
While the two-time All-Star would represent an upgrade over projected starter Christian Arroyo at second base, there are a couple of concerns.
First, Story hasn't played second base at all in the major leagues and made just 12 appearances at the position in the minors. While it's not a drastic switch, it would still be a change coming amid a shortened spring training following the 99-day MLB lockout.
Second, the departure from Coors Field is always a factor for Rockies players, and that's especially true considering the middle infielder's splits.
Story's OPS was 220 points higher at home (.972) than on the road (.752) over the past six years. The silver lining in this case, however, is Fenway Park ranks second to Coors in offensive park factors, per Baseball Savant. That helps alleviate some of those concerns.
From a lineup-building perspective, the former Colorado standout is a better fit than Freeman, who would have taken over at first base, shifted Bobby Dalbec to designated hitter and pushed J.D. Martinez back into the outfield, where he owns a career negative-38 defensive runs saved, per FanGraphs.
Story would slide right in at second base, allowing everyone else to remain in their current spot, including Jackie Bradley Jr. and his 60 career DRS in center field.
That'd be a nice boost as the Red Sox attempt to keep pace in what's likely to become a highly competitive race for the AL East division title.