Bobby Valentine Expects Jose Iglesias to Push Mike Aviles in Red Sox’ Shortstop Battle, Sees Nick Punto as Utility Player


The Red Sox' shortstop position remains up in the air a bit in the wake of the team trading Marco Scutaro, but manager Bobby Valentine is pleased with what he has to work with.

Valentine said on Sunday that he thinks Mike Aviles, who the Sox acquired last season from Kansas City, has the "DNA" of an everyday shortstop. Aviles played a utility role with the club last season, but the starting shortstop job seems to be his to lose out of the gate this season.

Valentine thinks free-agent signing Nick Punto will take on more of a utility role, filling in all over the diamond when necessary.

The Sox skipper also said that he expects rookie Jose Iglesias, who appeared in 10 games with Boston last season, to push Aviles for playing time. In other words, it'll certainly be a position to keep an eye on throughout spring training and into the regular season.

To hear more from Valentine on a number of topics, including the Red Sox' right-field situation and how Kevin Youkilis and Carl Crawford are progressing, check out the video above.

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