Baseball

Why Red Sox are encouraged with Andrew Benintendi after recent visit

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The Red Sox love how Andrew Benintendi looks.

With trade rumors swirling earlier this month, Red Sox hitting coaches made a routine visit to the left fielder and came away impressed.

Red Sox hitting coach Tim Hyers and assistant coach Peter Fatse went down to Nashville, Tennessee, to see Benintendi, coincidentally at about the same time that trade rumors were heating up with the left fielder. But those rumors, which have since cooled down, weren’t mentioned once during their two-day visit inside a Nashville warehouse, Hyers said.

For now, it appears Benintendi, who’s coming off major struggles and a season-ending injury in 2020, is in the Red Sox’ plans, and judging by the recent visit, they’re excited about his chances of bouncing back this season.

“I just felt that he was really relaxed and eager to get to camp to prove that last year is not who he is,” Hyers said. “He’s a better player than that. And so I think he’s more eager and energetic to get back and get started and get back on track. Obviously, I think motivated is a good word… Benny believes in himself. I believe in him. And I think he wants to prove to the fanbase in Boston that he’s worked hard and ready to get back on track.”

Coming off the worst year of his major-league career, it sounds like Benintendi is in great shape physically and in a good place mentally, motivated to come back stronger than ever in 2021.

Hyers described the visit as “low key,” but he and Fatse were certainly encouraged. Hyers’ biggest takeaway from the visit was where Benintendi seemed to be mentally after a 2020 baseball experience that the left fielder simply described as “frustrating.” But the hitting coach was also impressed with how he looked.

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