On April 2, one day after the Red Sox’ season-opening victory at Yankee Stadium, Mike Napoli heard the team had signed Brandon Snyder to a minor league contract.

“Good pickup,” Napoli said, recalling his reaction.
After the last two games, Red Sox fans everywhere are nodding in agreement.

Making his second consecutive start at third base, Snyder followed his 2-for-4, two-RBI effort Sunday against the Toronto Blue Jays by working a nine-pitch at-bat and delivering a three-run double in the fourth inning last night in a 4-1 win over the San Diego Padres in the opener of an interleague series at Fenway Park.

Not bad for a player who was unemployed during the final week of spring training.

“It’s been amazing. It’s just a blessing,” said Snyder, 3-for-9 with two doubles and five RBI since being called up last week to replace demoted third baseman Will Middlebrooks. “Obviously, leaving spring training not knowing where I was going to be, ending up with the Red Sox, going to (Triple-A) Pawtucket, it’s just an awesome feeling to have that kind of sense of trust in me to come up and fill in.”

Backed by Snyder, John Lackey turned in yet another gem, giving up little more than Jesus Guzman’s solo home run over eight stellar innings, his longest outing since June 17, 2011. And after blowing a save Sunday, interim closer Koji Uehara tossed a spotless ninth inning, striking out a pair of batters en route to his fourth save in five chances since replacing deposed Andrew Bailey.

But it was Snyder who provided the offense and emerged as the latest example of the impressive depth that has given the Red Sox the American League’s best record at 51-34.

All along, Napoli knew Snyder was capable. They were teammates for four months last season with the Texas Rangers, during which time Snyder batted .281 with three homers and nine RBI as a right-handed hitter off the bench.