Bogaerts: ‘My Heart Is Always Shortstop’

BOSTON (CBS) — Tuesday was not an easy day for Xander Bogaerts.

It wasn’t until he arrived at Fenway Park that Bogaerts learned the Red Sox had signed Stephen Drew for the rest of the season, and when Drew is ready, he would be be shifting over to third base.

“There was a lot going on today,” Bogaerts told reporters following Boston’s 7-4 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays. “I don’t want to make excuses, but it definitely was a tough day today.”

The 21-year-old rookie was handed the keys to shortstop during the off-season, and manager John Farrell told him the team still sees him as an everyday shortstop.

“My heart is always shortstop,” he said. “They felt that we’re a better team with [Drew], so that’s why they went out and got him. And I was just feeling so good over there, but they made the decision they had to make.”

Bogaerts, who played just 10 games at third throughout his minor league career, took over a third base for a scuffling Will Middlebrooks during Boston’s World Series run last postseason, tallying eight games at the hot corner. With Middlebrooks shelved with a broken finger, the Red Sox brass felt it was time to make a move and shore up their defense at short. In 42 games this season, Bogaerts has six errors at shortstop; Drew had just eight in 124 games in 2013.

Bogaerts said he’s thankful that he’s playing everyday, especially for the Red Sox. But there is some frustration with the move to third.

“I don’t know what to say on that one,” he said. “I worked so hard at being there and just now I started feeling comfortable out there. They did what they had to do.”

At the plate, Bogaerts is batting .270 with two home runs and seven RBIs.

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