23-year-old Jose Iglesias unexpectedly began the season as the Red Sox starting shortstop after Stephen Drew suffered a concussion in spring training. Iglesias, an all-glove, no-bat, prospect, hit .450 in his six game stint in the majors. The fan base immediately adopted a "let the kid play" mantra, but he was sent down regardless. It didn't help when Stephen Drew began the season at a glacial pace.
But Drew is the shortstop of 2013. He signed a one-year, $9.5 million dollar contract, because the Sox felt Iglesias wasn't ready to hit at this level. Drew, for his part, has picked it up at the plate, hitting a respectable .243/.333/.429 in May.
Then 3B Will Middlebrooks got shuttled to the DL, and yesterday Iglesias found himself back in Boston. Only now he was at 3rd, rather than short.
When Iglesias was optioned to Pawtucket in April, the Sox began cross training him at 3rd. His major league role could be as a utility player, especially if uber prospect Xavier Bogaerts (hitting .276/.353/.423 with AA Portland) pans out. That has been Pedro Ciriaco's role, though he's had stone hands all season.
As Pedro Ciriaco founders, interesting to note the #RedSox had Jose Iglesias work out at 3B today. 2B on the schedule, too.
— Pete Abraham (@PeteAbe) May 20, 2013
The problem was that Iglesias wasn't hitting at AAA. He followed his .450 start in Boston with an anemic .202/.262/.319 line in Pawtucket, and prior to his call up was 2 for his last 21.
Last night he got his first ever start at 3B, and added a key single in the Sox 7th inning rally, blowing up what had been a close game. Now he gets two weeks to show his value, and the Sox have two weeks to figure out how to use this guy. Ciriaco is hitting just .177/.277/.325 and only makes $500,000, so replacing him with the slick fielding Iglesias could be a legitimate option once Middlebrooks returns.