Friday, February 25, 2011
Hip Hip... Jose!
One of the major debates from this 2011 MLB Spring Training is whether Scutarro or Lowrie deserves the nod at short stop. Regardless of who plays there this season, it will be Jose Iglesias who mans the position for years to come. Get used to the name.
The 20 year old from Cuba is currently in his second Red Sox Spring Training. Last year he was working on his English while learning the American style of baseball. This year he's getting reacquainted with his future Red Sox teammates. AL Rookie of the Year, AL MVP, Gold Glove award winner, Silver Slugger, and future double play parter Dustin Pedroia is probably Young Jose's biggest supporter. Iglesias is going to be one of the top defensive players in MLB once he gets there, but for right now he needs to learn how to be less flashy.
While MLB teams were scouting Jose some footage of him made it's way to 11-Time Gold Glove winner Omar Vizquel. Widely considered the best fielding short stop of all time, Vizquel had some pretty compliments to throw at the young short stop, "That's me", said Omar, "this kid is going to be good".
This offseason Jose also worked with New York Yankee, and former short stop Alex Rodriguez. A-Rod is a player that Iglesias has looked up to and even modeled his swing after. While Jose doesn't have the power Rodriguez has, he is still a very capable hitter. His offensive game is based more on contact, which is fine because of all the other things he brings to the taple. I'd expect Jose to make his major league debut next season, but if injuries strike he's defensively ready right now.
So while Terry Francona is deciding between Scutarro and Lowrie this season, the decision should be much easier come 2012.