Grady Sizemore has been named as the center fielder for the Boston Red Sox in their opening day game, reports CBS Sports.
Manager John Farrell confirmed the expected decision during a press conference on Friday morning. The decision will also see Jackie Bradley optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket.
Sizemore is looking to put a career beset by injuries behind him and fulfill the promise he showed in his early years in the MLB. Now 31, Sizemore represents a significant risk for the Red Sox to entrust such a key position.
If he can rekindle the form he showed between 2005/08, it will prove a masterstroke from Bradley. Figures of .281/.372/.496 (128 OPS+) with 27 homers, 41 doubles and 29 steals per 162 games played proves that Sizemore has the ability if he can get a run of games in.
Although not getting near those figures since 2008, he represents a low-risk, high-gain for the Red Sox, who, at most, will outlay $6m to Sizemore in his one-year, incentive-ridden contract.
Needless to say, the Red Sox would jump at the chance to pay Sizemore his full $6m as it will mean he is back to best. If he, as is unfortunately expected, succumbs to injury again, the Red Sox retain plenty of depth in the outfield to cover for his absence.