Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 10/25/12
Editor's note: Didier Morais will review each position for the Red Sox for the 2013 season. A new era is upon the Red Sox at third base. Midway through the 2012 season –– when Boston shipped out Kevin Youkilis to the White Sox after nine seasons –– Will Middlebrooks officially took the reigns as the franchise's third baseman of the future. Through 75 games, Middlebrooks wasted no time proving his value in the big leagues, launching 15 home runs and 54 RBIs while hitting .288. As each week went on, the 24-year-old's defense improved. But on Aug. 10, his sensational rookie ride ended when Indians reliever Esmil Rogers nailed him on the wrist with a 95 mph fastball. It wound up being a broken wrist that sidelined Middlebrooks for the rest of the season. During the last series of the season, Middlebrooks' rehab took a promising turn, when he took batting practice for the first time since the injury. Afterward, he admitting to feeling surprised about his strength. Even so, Middlebrooks will use the offseason to heal and prepare to return to spring training with full health. Like Dustin Pedroia at second base, third base is one of the few positions on the roster that has a long-term solution. Should Middlebrooks get injured down the road, the Red Sox still have depth at the position with Pedro Ciriaco –– who filled in for Middlebrooks down the stretch during the 2012 season. Naturally a shortstop, Ciriaco honed his craft at third base and demonstrated the necessary range to thrive, if necessary. The Red Sox also traded for Danny Valencia to offer additional depth as well. Ultimately, there are no questions here. With a year of experience under his belt, Middlebrooks is primed to maintain his offensive momentum next season when he's cleared for action. Have a question for Didier Morais? Send it to him via Twitter at @DidierMorais or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Five most anticipated September MLB call-ups
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Kaepernick facing ‘uphill battle’ to make roster

Djokovic says ‘private issues’ cost him chance at grand slam

Colin Kaepernick on national anthem: 'I'll continue to sit'

Stephen Jones: Cowboys 'look forward' to starting Prescott

Stanton has 'slim chance' of returning for final week?

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Kubiak hinting that Siemian is favorite for Broncos' QB job?

John Harbaugh: NFL needs to make changes to preseason

Romo expected to miss 6-10 weeks with broken bone in back

Kaepernick explains why he is protesting national anthem

Dwyane Wade’s cousin shot and killed in Chicago

NFL tries to reduce kick returns, promptly causes more kick returns

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

Marshall’s first impression of Fitzpatrick: ‘He was terrible’

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Six worst quarterback situations in the NFL

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker