In search of Mitch Moreland


Sometimes the fit almost makes too much sense.

That seemed (and seems) to be the case with Mitch Moreland and the Red Sox.

He is the 36-year-old left-handed-hitting first baseman who is sitting at home in Alabama, having last worn an Oakland A's uniform throughout the 2021 season.

Moreland is the guy who entrenched himself as a fan favorite while signing wit the Red Sox on three different occasions, showing propensity to thrive in the big moments while playing a stellar first base and tearing up right-handed pitching.

For this Red Sox team, it's a player one would think might be worth a phone call. Heading into Thursday, the club carries a major league-worst OPS and batting average at the first base position.

The phone hasn't rung.

"To be honest, I thought I would have more opportunities than were presented," said Moreland on the Bradfo Sho podcast. "That's out of my control. So, like I said, my feelings aren't hurt by any means because I get to spend every weekend with my kids, which is something I have never been able to do. Being at home in the summer or springtime or whatever it is. Doing a little fishing. I get to cut grass. I haven't been able to do that in a long time. Stuff like that you don't realize you're missing but you do once you get out here and you're able to do it. It's been a blast to spend a little more time with family.

"Did I think there would be an opportunity? I did. But it just didn't seem to work out."

And about that possible reunion with the Red Sox? "I didn't know. You can't ever tell with guys' plans. You can look at it and say there is a fit here or there. But obviously, every team has its plans and their ideas. I love that place. It's my favorite place I have played. I'm pretty sure everybody knows that. It was definitely an unbelievable experience being part of the Red Sox organization and the culture and the fan base. Winning a World Series there is something that is a highlight of my career so far. Nothing but respect for those guys. Sure, I would have loved to be there and had an opportunity again. But, like I said, it's not my plans that matter. They're the ones who make those decisions."

The last time Moreland wore a uniform - before his trade to San Diego midway through the shortened 2020 season - he was one of the team's best offensive threats, hitting .328 with a 1.177 OPS and eight homers in 22 games.

In Oakland last season, Moreland's playing time was cut back after signing a one-year, $2.25 million deal. He finished 2021 hitting .221 with a .701 OPS and 10 homers in 81 games. (Eight of his homers came against righties.)

For now, Moreland is soaking in the life he hadn't been able to live due to his baseball-playing days. He clearly would still like to be part of a big-league club, but this alternative, as he explained, isn't all that bad.

"Kind of hanging out at the house, coaching a little 9U baseball with my oldest and getting to watch my 4-year-old who started this year with coach-pitch. My daughter's doing gymnastics, so they're keeping us pretty busy. I'm just trying to enjoy that time I haven't had in the past," he said.

"I'm not really sure how (the offseason) kind of went down. Obviously, with the lockout everything was going to be kind of hectic. You saw some guys fly off the board pretty early. Once it opened back up it seemed like it moved pretty fast. For me, personally, I never really got an opportunity with anybody. At this point in my career, it wasn't like it hurt my feelings a whole lot because I have a lot of family here and I'm trying to catch up on some family time, so I've done that.

"I don't really know where I stand right now. I couldn't tell you. It was definitely a pretty hectic offseason, but I have enjoyed my off time, just the same."

To listen to the entire Bradfo Sho podcast, click below ...