The Red Sox signed Stephen Drew to play shortstop in 2013 for a variety of reasons, but the most obvious ones involved Jose Iglesias and his lack of readiness for the majors. Iglesias had struggled in 2012 to close out the season, and looked completely lost at the plate -- while he worked on his hitting all winter long, you can't necessarily make your team plans based on someone saying their cage work in December went well. Hence the Drew signing.
Drew, besides a rough start thanks to a spring concussion, has basically been as expected, posting a 741 OPS since April 22 while playing quality defense at short now that he's even furthered removed from his gruesome 2011 ankle injury. Iglesias was sent back down after Drew's return, but managed to work his way back to the majors, and has done nothing but here while there in each of the two stints. He's now Boston's primary utility player, and is set to play much more often than the previous utility guy, Pedro Ciriaco, did. Despite Drew's solid season, there have been plenty of calls for Iglesias to be the shortstop instead.
This off-day tidbit is one reason why: Iglesias, who again, supposed to be in Triple-A learning how to hit, is now the holder of MLB's longest active hitting streak. Iglesias has collected a hit in 17-straight games, dating back to May 27, and has hit .426/.478/.557 in that stretch.
Iglesias obviously isn't going to hit like this all year long. However, his 2013 surge has brought his career line up from .135/.210/.203 with an OPS+ of 12 all the way to .301/.361/.399, OPS+ of 104. That's an above-average hitter, never mind shortstop: If Iglesias can just keep doing that from here on out, never mind the hit streaks and absurd season line and all that, he's going to be hugely valuable.
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