Jose Iglesias isn’t just giving John Farrell options. He’s giving them to Ben Cherington, too. The trade deadline remains six weeks away, but it’s never too early to start thinking about what the Sox need and what they could trade to get it. There was a time when Iglesias would’ve served as bait. But by forcefully stating his case for regular playing time, he’s making a good player expendable, which puts the Red Sox in a position of strength as they look to upgrade their bullpen or perhaps the back of their rotation for the second half. Getting the start in place of Stephen Drew in a 2-0 loss to the Orioles last night, Iglesias recorded two of the team’s three hits and was robbed of another by third baseman Manny Machado. When he stepped in with one out in the ninth as the tying run, he was the guy you wanted to see in that situation, and in what universe did we ever expect to say that? Iglesias jumped on the first pitch and grounded into a game-ending double play. There was no storybook ending, but with All-Star right-hander Jim Johnson on the mound, Farrell very easily could’ve pinch hit the left-handed Drew for Iglesias. He instead had Drew standing in the on-deck circle to bat for Will Middlebrooks. The fact that the game ended with Farrell juggling those three was fitting, because they represent the triumvirate of possible change. For Iglesias to play every day, either Middlebrooks or Drew must sit. One of them could even conceivably go. In the short term, the player to bench is Middlebrooks, who has struggled both offensively and defensively since returning from the disabled list on Monday. Middlebrooks is a far better player than his numbers (.198-8-22) suggest, but he’s scuffling — hard.
Jose Iglesias forces issue
Boston Herald | Jun 15