Close your eyes and envision the perfect complement to 21-year-old Red Sox phenom Xander Bogaerts.

Ideally Player X would be a veteran left-handed-hitting shortstop on a short-term contract who could help Bogaerts ease into the position, perhaps even in a platoon, with Bogaerts shifting to third against righties.

If this veteran is capable of playing full-time, even better. That would provide the Red Sox insurance on two fronts: against Bogaerts not being ready for prime time defensively, and from another disastrous season out of third baseman Will Middlebrooks. If worse comes to worst, Bogaerts is your everyday third baseman, and his veteran counterpart mans shortstop. If Bogaerts and Middlebrooks soar, the veteran becomes trade bait.

Now open your eyes. The player we’re describing resembles someone familiar. Someone named Stephen Drew.

While no one will argue he had anything other than a putrid postseason offensively (although he at least recovered to homer in the clincher) — his defense was solid, particularly turning double plays with Dustin Pedroia.

And when you consider his offense during the regular season — he ranked fifth among full-time shortstops in OPS (.777), despite needing a month to shake off the effects of a concussion — he’s a far better player than many will grant.

The Red Sox made him a one-year qualifying offer of $14.1 million, which Drew rejected to enter free agency. Agent Scott Boras has trumpeted his credentials on both sides of the ball and believes there’s a multi-year deal out there.

But what if there isn’t? In that case, a Red Sox reunion makes a lot of sense.

In a true free market, Drew would get a three- or four-year deal and that’d be the end of that. But signing Drew will cost his new team a draft pick, along with its bonus allotment. That’s a huge consideration for a second-tier free agent.

The Cardinals, for instance, used the draft pick they obtained from the Angels after losing Hall of Fame first baseman Albert Pujols to draft right-hander Michael Wacha. They wouldn’t even consider a straight-up swap now.

At least the Halos have Pujols. Imagine saying you traded Michael Wacha for Stephen Drew. Fear is a powerful motivator in baseball, and no executive wants to be on the wrong side of that transaction.