MINNEAPOLIS — The Red Sox have played nine games and used nine different defensive alignments. Before Monday’s game against the Twins was postponed, manager Alex Cora had drawn up a 10th variation.
This time it was Kiké Hernández in left field for the first time, Hunter Renfroe in center field for the first time, and J.D. Martinez in right field for the first time.
Part of the thinking was to give Marwin Gonzalez and Alex Verdugo days off in the middle of a stretch in which the Sox have 16 games scheduled in as many days.
The Sox have already used four different players in left field, two in center, and two in right.
Cora said he’s not concerned with defensive chemistry because he tried different groupings during spring training.
“Enrique and Hunter are great communicators out there,” he said. “They take charge.”
Go for a ride
Going back to roughly the final third of last season, Sox players have celebrated home runs by riding a laundry cart pushed by teammates in the dugout.
Backup catcher Kevin Plawecki came up with the idea, with some encouragement from catching and game-planning coach Jason Varitek.
“Last year we were trying to have some fun in a situation that wasn’t the most ideal,” infielder Christian Arroyo said. “We just carried it over to this season. We’re definitely having fun with it.”
The Sox hit six home runs Sunday in Baltimore. The cart they appropriated from the visitors’ clubhouse was a bit deep, so they lined it with towels to make for a more comfortable ride.
Progress for Santana
Danny Santana is back on the field at minor league spring training in Fort Myers, Fla., after recovering from surgery on his right foot to treat an infection. Santana was signed to a minor league contract in March. The 30-year-old MLB veteran is doing well physically. “Hopefully he can get some at-bats soon,” Cora said . . . The Red Sox have arranged four more games for the players at their alternate site in Worcester. Mets players are scheduled for two games at Polar Park this weekend, with the Red Sox going to Brooklyn for two games at the end of the month. The Triple A season is not scheduled to start until May 4.