JUPITER, Fla. ?? Jose Iglesias scurried all around the infield. In the second inning, the Red Sox shortstop started by making a sliding stop on David Freese?s grounder and firing a bullet to first base for the out.
On the ensuing at-bat, Cardinals designated hitter Matt Adams hit a sharp grounder to second base. As the ball rolled, Iglesias bolted in front of Dustin Pedroia and tossed Adams out.
The scenes enthralled Josh Beckett, who toed the rubber against St. Louis.
"That was a great play, that was one the ball that he sculled it, that Freese hit," Beckett said. "It was pretty sick?It?s nice when [shortstops] make a great play, but when a guy hits a ball that hard, if he would?ve missed that, I think I would understand."
The pitcher?s second spring outing was pretty impressive as well. Facing the defending World Series champions ?? with the majority of its regular starting lineup in place ?? Beckett tossed three scoreless innings and didn?t yield any hits or walks.
Carlos Beltran was the only omission from the Cardinals? lineup, but the outfielder was battling flu-like symptoms. Although Beltran wasn?t present, Beckett still believed he pitched against top-notch competition.
"That?s a good lineup," Beckett said. "They hit three balls hard. It?s nice, you know, because you get a little bit ?? not saying the other guys can?t hit because anybody with a bat out there can hit ?? but it?s nice to try to just gauge yourself."
Beckett finished his start by throwing 30 pitches, 24 of them for strikes.