BOSTON (CBS) — One of the few story lines from spring training this season was whether Bobby Valentine would go with Mike Aviles or Jose Iglesias at shortstop. He went with Aviles, who’s proven Valentine right by hitting .291 with five homers in the opening month of the year.
Now, Iglesias will join Aviles on the roster, but that April performance from Aviles will be enough to prevent any roster battle from taking place this time around.
Iglesias was called up to the Red Sox on Tuesday, after Kevin Youkilis was not in the lineup for the third straight day due to a sore back. To make room on the roster, reliever Junichi Tazawa was sent down to Triple-A.
Iglesias, 22, is hitting just .200 with just one extra-base hit at Triple-A this year. In limited action at the big league level last year, Iglesias went 2-for-6 with two strikeouts and three runs scored with the Red Sox.
Tazawa has pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings for Boston this year, posting a 0.789 WHIP and registering a save in the process.
Iglesias’ place on the roster is likely to serve as insurance should an infielder suffer an injury, as Aviles is starting at shortstop and Nick Punto is at third base for Tuesday night’s game. Valentine wouldn’t comment one way or the other when asked Tuesday if he thought Youkilis’ back issues would require a trip to the disabled list.