Curious about the back story for a player who is universally recognized as the top Red Sox' prospect not just of 2013, but maybe even for most of the last decade? On Monday, the official Minor League Baseball website published an article detailing how Bogaerts got his start playing baseball in his native Aruba, up through the present, where he's expected to appear at Double-A Portland once more at the tender age of 20.
It's an intriguing read, if for no other reason than it's rare to see inside the mind of a minor-leaguer, regardless of how talented that prospect is. Bogaerts gives some of the standard answers about love of the game and all that, but he comes off as someone who genuinely works hard and cares about his performance, as well as how well he represents his home country, one where just a handful of major-league baseball players have come from:
For Bogaerts, reaching the Majors would help realize a lifelong goal.
"It's something that I won't be able to believe until I'm in the batter's box getting my first at-bat," he said. "It will be something unbelievable because I've played my whole career ... trying to become one of those Major League players. You have idols like Derek Jeter and Hanley [Ramirez] and those guys, you want to be one of them. It will be crazy when I have an opportunity to join them."
You might cringe finding out he idolizes a Yankee, but let's be honest here. You could do a lot worse than looking up to a guy with 3,300-plus career hits, who managed a .316/.362/.429 line as a 38-year-old, and is a lock for Cooperstown five years after whenever his career does end.
That being said, it would have been good to see him mention a shortstop with some semblance of a glove, but you can't have everything.