Nunez likely to start Red Sox opener at 2B as Pedroia heals

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Eduardo Nunez is likely to be the opening-day second baseman for the Boston Red Sox while Dustin Pedroia recovers from offseason knee surgery.

Nunez would be the first player other than Pedroia to start a Boston opener at second since Mark Loretta in 2006. Pedroia made his major league debut Aug. 22 that year.

Pedroia had left knee surgery on Oct. 25 in which Dr. Riley Williams III restored cartilage, and the Red Sox said then he was expected to miss more than the first month of the season.

The 30-year-old Nunez was an All-Star with San Francisco in 2016 and was acquired by the Red Sox last July 26 for a pair of minor leaguers. He hit .321 with eight homers, 23 runs and 27 RBIs in 38 games for Boston but was slowed when he bruised his right knee on Sept. 9.

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