Red Sox

MLB Notebook: A look at some low-cost free agent possibilities for Sox; J.D. Martinez thoughts

So far, there's been far more focus on the Red Sox' ability and willingness to retain two of their current stars -- J.D. Martinez, who can opt out of his deal Monday, and Mookie Betts, who is under control through the end of next season.

Those are huge storylines, of course, since they involve, arguably, the two biggest forces in the Red Sox lineup. If Martinez walks and/or Betts is traded, the 2020 Red Sox will have a much different look.

What happens with that duo will impact the rest of the winter, since there's a lot of money involved. If both leave -- Martinez via free agency and Betts via trade -- the Sox will have shaved about $47 million from their payroll.

But at some point, regardless of the fate of Martinez and Betts, the Red Sox will have to do some adding.

For this offseason, we can rule the Sox out on some big-ticket items. Barring some sudden and dramatic reversal, they'll not be in on Stephen Strasburg or Gerrit Cole, even though either would be a welcome addition to a rotation very much in need of upgrades.

Instead, the Sox will be shopping for less expensive options to address roster holes.

Here's a look at some needs and potential low-cost solutions:

Second base: It's possible that the Sox could fill from within here, with some combination of Michael Chavis and Marco Hernandez. But the former may be better utilized at first base and the latter, frankly, hasn't yet demonstrated that he can be an everyday player.

Brock Holt, himself a free agent, could return here in some scenarios. But the feeling is that