Red Sox: Is Iglesias here to stay?

Red Sox shortstop Jose Iglesias has performed better at the major league level than in the minors. (Getty Images)
Red Sox shortstop Jose Iglesias has performed better at the major league level than in the minors. (Getty Images)

The 2013 season couldn’t have started any better for Jose Iglesias. With Stephen Drew still recovering from a concussion suffered in spring training, Iglesias was the Red Sox starting shortstop for the first week of the season and hit .450 in that span.

Then Drew came back for the second home game of the season and Iglesias was sent down to Triple-A Pawtucket. Back in the minors, where he played 261 games before this season, things didn’t go as well. The 23-year-old was benched for a week with what was called “disciplinary reasons” in early May and in 33 games with the PawSox, Iglesias hit just .202 with six extra-base hits.

Last week Iglesias was recalled when Will Middlebrooks went on the disabled list. Despite never playing a single inning at third base prior to some pre-game work and one minor league game last week, Iglesias was immediately inserted into the starting lineup at third base Friday night.

“Talking with [PawSox manager] Gary DiSarcina, it just felt like [Iglesias] took to the position naturally,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said. “He’s a very instinctual player. He’s got very good reactions and reflexes, and that’ll be the case more at third base than being back in the middle of the infield where he’s got a little more time to get the pace and the speed of the ground ball.”

His impact was immediately felt as he went 4-for-7 in his first two games and played flawless defense in the field, showcasing his spectacular glove.

“I feel comfortable here, I feel really comfortable here,” Iglesias said. “This is just a game so you go out there and play.”

Hitting considerably better in the majors compared to the minors, Iglesias offered up why this may be, but the answer may not be quite what fans or the organization would expect or want.

“You have motivation here to win the game,” Iglesias said of playing in the majors. “We have a reason to play for the fans, the team and organization. Down there it is a little more difficult. You still want to win and do your best, but you go to the field and see three people in the stands in the cold weather, it’s kind of tough and you have to push yourself a little harder.”

Prior to last week Iglesias was just a shortstop, but then began taking ground balls at every infield position besides first base and playing in games at third base. Could this mean a new role for the coveted Red Sox prospect?

The Red Sox clearly lack organizational depth at third base and utility infielder Pedro Ciriaco hasn’t been anywhere near what he was last season. In 22 games he’s 11-for-45 (.244), but even more alarming is his defense, as he’s made seven errors in 111 innings between shortstop and third base.

When Middlebrooks comes back, likely June 8, the Red Sox will be faced with another roster decision. Do they send Iglesias back to the minors, or do they part ways with Ciriaco, who is out of options and would need to be released?

After a start better than most predicted, and right there with the top teams in the American League, the Red Sox’ focus is now winning games. Although Iglesias has never been a utility player before, this might be the Red Sox’ biggest need, especially with Middlebrooks off to a rough start (.201 batting average).

All things considered, Iglesias might be here to stay, just not in the starting shortstop role some predicted following last season.

Follow Metro Red Sox beat writer Ryan Hannable on Twitter @hannable84



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

US military tried, but failed to rescue journalist…

The U.S. military earlier this year tried to rescue journalist James Foley and other American hostages held in Syria ,but failed to find the captives.

National

Fate of captured beluga whales in hands of…

A Georgia aquarium went to court on Wednesday seeking federal permission to bring 18 captured beluga whales to the United States from Russia.

Local

After Eric Garner death, religious leaders meet to…

Interfaith leaders convened with city officials to discuss what the community can do to help dial down heightened tensions after Eric Garner's death.

Local

'Suspicious' Hamilton Heights fire caused by power strip:…

An extension cord overload caused the deadly fire in Hamilton Heights late Monday that killed a 15-year-old girl and injured at least 12 others.

Television

Billy Crystal to commemorate late actor Robin Williams…

  Comedian Billy Crystal will pay tribute to late actor Robin Williams at television's Primetime Emmy Awards on Aug. 25, the show's organizers said on…

Going Out

Things to do this week in NYC, Aug.…

GAMES Hudson Common Open Aug. 21, 7 p.m. Hudson Common 356 W. 58 St. Free, www.hudsoncommonnyc.com The U.S. Open begins on Monday, but most of…

Movies

Review: Sadly, Matthew Weiner's 'Are You Here' is…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner tries his hand at movies with "Are You Here," a misjudged Owen Wilson-Zach Galifianakis comedy that turns into a drama.

Movies

Review: 'Love is Strange' is not only a…

John Lithgow and Alfred Molina tie the knot in "Love is Strange," but the film winds up being more about living with people than an activist picture.

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL defense (DEF)

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL quarterbacks (QB)

MLB

Shane Greene travels unlikely road to Yankees stardom

Shane Greene was throwing a bullpen session on a quiet field at Daytona Beach Community College one day when the ball started moving.

NFL

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL…

2014 Fantasy Football: Rankings, list of top NFL tight ends (TE)

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Wellbeing

Metabolic syndrome could have a sugar link

Scientists in St. Louis may have found another culprit in metabolic syndrome, which can lead to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.  Uric acid is…

Wellbeing

Another way stress hurts your unborn baby

Mothers know to try staying calm during pregnancy, as stress has been linked to behavioral and developmental problems for their babies. But now, a new…