FORT MYERS, Fla. (CBS) – New first baseman Adrian Gonzalez made his Red Sox debut Saturday afternoon against the Marlins, singling in his first at-bat.

“It’s another step for him, and he’s worked hard,” said Red Sox manager Terry Francona.

Gonzalez, who was traded to the Red Sox in December for three top prospects, has been rehabilitating from off-season shoulder surgery.

“The fact that he’s already ready is a testament to how hard he’s worked,” said Francona.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Jonny Miller spoke to Francona.

Francona said he plans to give Gonzalez a couple of at-bats during Saturday’s game, give him the day off on Sunday, and insert him into the lineup on Monday against the Yankees.

“It’s a fun day for everybody involved,” said Francona.

Include third baseman Kevin Youkilis in that discussion. Youk, who came up through the minor leagues as a third baseman but played the last few years for the Red Sox at first base, is excited to see Gonzalez take a few swings.

“It’s gonna be good to get him out on the field and just be able to get swings in and see what happens,” said Youkilis.

Jonny also spoke to Youkilis.

As for the tireless question, “What will Adrian Gonzalez bring to the lineup?,” Youkilis expects Gonzalez to “make the lineup that much better.”

“He’s a great hitter and a great player,” said Youkilis.