The Red Sox first half has been a tale of two shortstops: Xander Bogaerts and Stephen Drew; the super-prospect and the mid-season free agent acquisition. Drew was signed on May 20th for $10 million and played his first game on June 2nd. This move of course shifted Bogaerts over to 3rd base and everything has seemed to go downhill since then.
As a shortstop, Bogaerts definitely looked a bit shaky in the field and was a downgrade defensively from Stephen Drew. Everyone knew that going into the season, but the only way a 21-year-old is going to get better in the field is through experience. However, not even two months into the season, Bogaerts was back to third base. In 199 at-bats at short, he posted a .296/.389/.427 line to go along with his six errors in the field. Not bad for a kid. Since he’s moved to third, he’s put up a horrendous line of .140/.181/.225 and hasn’t exactly been Brooks Robinson in the field either. He has already accumulated seven errors, including a few costly ones, in twenty less games than he played at short. So was the Stephen Drew signing worth the mental destruction of the team’s best prospect in years?
If you happened to catch the July 5th double-header against the O’s, Stephen Drew looked like a great player. A home run in both games?! Can’t beat that. Well, if he hadn’t hit those home runs, he would be hitting .129 with two RBIs in a month’s worth of games. Even with the home runs, he’s hitting .151 with five RBIs. If he was a gold glove shortstop, maybe these offensive numbers could slide, but he’s not. He’s a top ten defensive shortstop that clearly lost some of his ability at the plate in his extended offseason. If the team wanted a defensive shortstop, they could have brought up Deven Marrero and saved some money. Drew’s playing so bad that I doubt anyone would even want him in a trade. Another bad decision by Ben Cherington in a year where his ideas have failed the team.
Xander Bogaerts (At SS)- Grade: B+
Stephen Drew- Grade: F