Francona: Marco Scutaro is our shortstop

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There has been some chatter lately about how Jed Lowrie could take over the Red Sox shortstop job from Marco Scutaro. Theo Epstein said as much himself last week. Terry Francona gave a press conference today, however, and he says nope, not happenin’:

“Scutaro’s our shortstop. (Lowrie) gives us something not a lot of teams can say they have. A switch hitter than can play first, second, third or short and play a lot. He can play for a week, he can play it for a day, he can play it or two weeks. That at some point is going to probably save us. How many times have you seen where everybody stays healthy?”

I assume that Francona has Scutaro’s health most closely in mind with that last comment.  He was hurt last year, he’s in his mid-30s, and he’s coming off a .275/.333/.388 season in which he played poor defense.  Lowrie, on the other hand, had a great season at the plate in an admittedly small sample size.

Francona may very well envision Lowrie getting a ton of time out there in 2011. But he has absolutely zero reason, from a clubhouse management perspective, to say anything apart from “Scutaro is our shortstop.”