Brock Holt Making Case to Play on a More Consistent Basis

Brock Holt

Through seven games and 24 at-bats entering Monday’s contest, Brock Holt has been off to a blazing start with a .500 average to go along with five RBI and a pair of doubles. Not only is the 26-year-old hitting absolutely everything thrown at him, but he has also played four different position in the field, including three of the four infield positions (aside from pitcher and catcher).

After being a staple at the top of the lineup for the Boston Red Sox in 2014, Holt hadBrock Holt no clue what his role on the Red Sox this season would be with the acquisitions of Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval during the off-season. He finished with a respectable .281/.331/..712 stat line while hitting 31 extra-base hits in 449 at-bats. He drove in 23 runs while scoring 68 times and stealing 12 bases on 14 attempts. What really makes the Texas native valuable is his versatility. He played all three outfield positions in 2014 and all four infield spots while committing only seven errors (six at third and one at first).

The way Holt has started has shown that he deserves at least four starts each week and can give the veterans one night off a week, which gives them time to rest. Not only can he rake at the plate and field with extreme consistency, but the former Pittsburgh Pirate can also work the pitcher at the top of the lineup. Sure, he has yet to walk in 2015, but he knows how to fight off tough pitches and layoff pitches in the dirt. The power may be lacking, but he provides another tablesetter at the top of the lineup to go alongside center fielder Mookie Betts.

The 26-year-old has earned playing time thanks especially to his ability to stay hot as he has now hit in six straight games after not playing in five of the first 10 games. He has started in four of the last five contests and will likely be in there for the near future until he cools off.

Holt has only three strikeouts on the season and has only struck out 119 times in 592 at-bats. The next thing on his to-do list has to be pitching and catching in order to check off every position on the field.

Boston Red Sox Starting Outfielder Brock Holt?

Brock HoltSo far this season, Brock Holt has gone beyond the call of duty for the Boston Red Sox, hitting .336 with a .373 OBP in 32 games while playing all sorts of positions around the field. A second baseman by trade, Holt has logged playing time primarily at third base this season, but he spent about a week at first base. As of late, Brock Holt has been playing left field as well. In no way is Brock Holt a premium defender, but his ability to hit a baseball makes it tough for manager John Farrell to leave him out of the lineup.
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One place Boston could use some help in is the outfield. With a .242 batting average in 21 games in 2014, Shane Victorino boasts the highest batting average of any Red Sox outfielder and he is currently on the disabled list. With that being said, the Red Sox are not receiving much offensive output from their outfield.

Lacking outfield experience, Holt is quickly proving he can play the position. The first game Holt played in the outfield professionally came on Sunday when he made this catch.

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Brock Holt is a highly versatile player who Boston can really take advantage of to fill in the holes in their lineup while bringing a hot bat to the plate every single day. Holt is key to Boston’s success, and needs to keep playing every day if the Red Sox want to compete this year.