Red Sox

Red Sox

BOSTON - Xander Bogaerts was considered the Red Sox shortstop of the future from the time they signed him in 2009 until his debut in 2013.

Stephen Drew got in the way during the 2014 season, but it was obvious to everyone that it was only a temporary thing that year as the Sox tried to fix their issues.

Boagerts has been back at shortstop for the entire 2015 season, and he isn't going anywhere. Coming into Wednesday's game, he has the second-highest batting average in the American League at .325. He looks much more comfortable at the position this season, too.

But the Red Sox have another highly-regarded prospect in their organization in shortstop Deven Marrero. The Sox drafted Marrero in the first round of the 2012 MLB June Amateur Draft, and shortstop was the only position he played in the minors until this season.

While Marrero spent the majority of his 2015 season at shortstop in Pawtucket, he began to play some games at second base and third base.

That has also occurred up in Boston, as Marrero has appeared at second base in three games and third base in five games. He's getting the start at third base Wednesday night, as Lovullo continues to see what he can do at the position.

"I thought he's done a great job," Lovulo said. "When you have ground level view from the dugout especially in places like Toronto where you're lined up with the third baseman, you get to see some actions and some movements a little bit more clearly. The dugout here in Boston because of its angle can be challenging in that regard. But just watching him make plays left, come in make plays. He made a great play on a bunt in Baltimore I believe. We love the body control, we love the actions, we love his ability to play third as much as we do as a shortstop. He looks very good and very polished as a third baseman. It's a credit to him and player development for getting him ready."

It's interesting to hear Lovullo say they like Marrero at third base just as much as they like him at shortstop. The Red Sox are paying plenty of money to both Dustin Pedroia and Pablo Sandoval, but Pedroia provides intangibles and superb defense to justify the salary more than Sandoval does.

If Marrero is to find a place on this Red Sox roster, his best chance at doing so might be at third base. Red Sox President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski could look to find another team for Sandoval over the offseason.

Or, the Red Sox want to increase Marrero's trade value by showing other teams that he's a capable third baseman. Dombrowski isn't shy when it comes to trading prospects, and if the Sox are going to acquire an ace this offseason, they may have to do it via trade. Marrero could prove to be a big piece in that type of deal.