Stephen Drew might be a good alternative to Jose Iglesias at short.
I can hear the groans already. Another Drew? Another player with the reputation of not being able to live up to expectations and play through injuries?
Yes, Drew is all of that. But he makes perfect sense for the Boston Red Sox in 2013.
This move wouldn't move the meter or excite the fan base at all. In fact it might have the opposite effect of making the fans frustrated with the front office. But it would be is a sound baseball investment.
Signing Drew would protect the Red Sox against a multitude of things occurring during the spring if Jose Iglesias struggles against major league pitching and the Sox don't feel comfortable installing Pedro Ciriaco as the full time SS.
Drew's numbers in the National League are what would interest the Sox. His slash line of .266/.328/.436 during his time with the Diamondback wouldn't blow anyone away.
But it would be a significant improvement over Iglesias and Drew might show continued progress recovering from a gruesome ankle injury suffered in July of 2011.
Iglesias would be the better defense shortstop, but is it worth the risk going into the spring without an alternative?
What it will also prevent is the Red Sox simply handing the position to Iglesias and then finding out that he is going to continue to struggle at the plate and needs more time to develop in the minors. If Iglesias hits, then Drew can be used in trade to fill other areas.
Should the Red Sox sign Stephen Drew?
The Sox should want Iglesias to take the position, to show that he is the right man for the job. Making a young player earn the position is the right way to handle this.
Having a second major league shortstop on board wouldn't be a bad thing, in fact it might make everyone go to spring training more comfortable with the shortstop situation.
The Sox need to add talent to the roster. In doing a recent ranking of the Sox compared to the rest of the division, it was startling to see where the Sox ranked in comparison to the other teams in the AL East position by position.
If Drew were willing to sign a one-year contract for $5-$6 million with incentives with the Sox, it would allow him to restore his value much like another Scott Boras' client, Adrian Beltre.
As the Red Sox go about building their roster for 2013, adding as many good baseball players to the team is the right way to go about doing it.
Even if it is J.D. Drew's younger brother.
Statistics used from Baseball Reference.