By Bruce Levine-
GLENDALE, Ariz. (CBS) — Matt Davidson has a practical view of his future as the Sox third baseman.
Traded to Chicago last December for Addison Reed, the job is there for him to grab with two weeks to go until opening day. Big time power and a solid work ethic have given Sox brass time to pause in making there decision on the 25 man roster that will break camp on March 28.
“This will not be an east decision,” said assistant GM Buddy Bell on 670 the Score’s Inside the Clubhouse on Saturday. “Matt is a hard worker and he has improved quite a bit with his set up and foot work. I believe you can have a player develop at the top level. That said you must be able to defend. Nothing hurts a team more than plays that are not completed. This decision will go right down to the wire for us,” Bell said.
Davidson, who got a taste of the big leagues with Arizona last August and September, is mature enough not to stress over making the big club out of spring training.
“I am trying to keep cool and not put any extra pressure on myself,” he stated. “I have always been kind of a slow starter. Defensively the staff has been working hard with me on my set up and overall game. ”
Not giving into the pressure of hitting a lot of home runs and making a big impression is key to relaxed play for Davidson.
“I feel great,” he said. “You cannot always focus on the numbers. I try to focus on how I feel and getting my work done. In reality spring training numbers do not matter. Of course I am trying to win a spot here, but you need to avoid the self imposed pressure. My goal is to get better every day.”
The Sox can start the season with Conor Gillaspie and Jeff Keppinger in a platoon at third base. Keppinger has yet to play the position and throw this spring. He is recovering from a shoulder surgery clean up last fall. Marcus Semien is also in the mix as a back-up at three infield positions.
Ideally Davidson wins the job and brings yet another power bat to home run friendly U.S Cellular field.
“Of course I want to make the team,” Davidson said. “Those things are among things you can’t control. I will work hard and try to make the team.”