Coming into spring training, Mookie Betts, the Red Sox’s seventh-ranked prospect by Baseball America in 2014, was supposed to compete with Cuban signee Rusney Castillo for the starting center field job.

However, it hasn’t been much of a competition. Castillo injured his oblique early on, and Betts has put on a show. In 11 games so far this spring, he leads the Grapefruit League in hitting with a .471 average to go along with nine extra-base hits and nine runs scored.

He is also playing a tremendous center field. He had been a second baseman his entire career and only moved to center last year when he was called up to The Show last June. He has made several diving catches and is getting more and more comfortable as the preseason goes along.

Yes, he has had a bit of trouble with balls hit over his head, but manager John Farrell told Gordon Edes of that there is a reason for that:

The work he needed defensively coming into spring training was going back on the ball. Purposely we’ve had him play shallow to track balls that would otherwise be routine or deep fly balls but end up over his head. When we start the season, his alignment will be a little bit deeper. We’ve just taken the opportunity to work on breaks getting back to balls.

There hasn’t been any formal announcement yet, but Betts will likely be Boston’s starting center fielder once Opening Day comes around.

And it’s not like he is the only promising outfielder that the Red Sox have.

Hanley Ramirez, whom the Red Sox signed to a four-year, $88 million contract in the offseason, has been tearing it up and projects to be a force at the plate. While he is moving to a foreign position, left field, he should be able to hit well enough to overcome any possible fielding deficiencies.

If Han-Ram produces at the level he has at times in the past, he could potentially be a dark-horse candidate for the American League MVP.

He will definitely have a good chance to be the starting left fielder in the All-Star Game, especially with the drastic decrease of production from that position, as outlined by David Schoenfield of

Farrell has made it clear that veteran Shane Victorino will patrol right field for the Sox in 2015, even though Victorino played in only 30 games last year, hitting .268 with 12 RBI in the process.

“If Shane Victorino’s healthy, he’s our right fielder. You don’t lose your job to injury,” Farrell told reporters before the start of spring training in Fort Myers, Florida.

Sure, he is not the player he once was—he averaged 33 stolen bases per year from 2007-2010—but he proved in the 2013 playoffs that he can still contribute in a big way, when he hit a pivotal home run against the Tigers in the deciding game of the ALCS.

He was very effective at the plate that year, hitting .294 with 15 home runs and 21 stolen bases.

And now he should be able to hit even better, since he recently decided that he will hit exclusively right-handed in 2015. He has been a switch-hitter in the past, but he felt that he was not able to get enough reps going both ways, so he is choosing to focus on perfecting his right-handed cut.

And don’t forget Castillo, who homered in his first spring training game. He should compete for a roster spot and could be productive if called upon.

Also, Allen Craig, Daniel Nava and Jackie Bradley, Jr. are competent outfielders and have been solid big league players at some point in their respective careers.

All in all, the trio of Ramirez, Betts and Victorino playing in the outfield from left to right is a stellar combination. All three are very athletic, and Betts and Victorino have the ability to be above-average defenders.

Ramirez has the talent to be a solid defender, but if he chooses to focus on his hitting, I don’t think the Red Sox are going to be too concerned. 

The Red Sox made a lot of changes this offseason, and they have a chance to make the postseason. If they do, their impressive outfield trio will be a big reason why.

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