Through four seasons with the White Sox, Lillibridge has epitomized the description of a utility man, playing every single position on the baseball diamond except for pitcher and catcher.
As he acclimates to life with the Red Sox, Lillibridge expects his versatility to be an asset off the bench for manager Bobby Valentine.
"That's why I think I've been in the big leagues as long as I have, just being able to play places I've been able to do, outfield, infield all that stuff," Lillibridge said. "Hopefully, that can help get me in the lineup here too, but for the most part I don't really have any expectations other than just being part of this team and helping us try to win."
But Lillibridge has never been known for his offensive prowess. Aside from a 13-homer season in 2011, the 28-year-old has uncorked just three home runs total in his four other professional seasons.
Lillibridge hopes to provide reinforcement for a club that's been decimated by injuries. Considering the slew of outfielders that have landed on the disabled list –– and that Nick Punto is the only infield backup –– Lillibridge covers all spots, defensively.
"This just seemed like the right fit for us," Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said. "We got a player that will go right into our roster and help us, [a] very versatile guy in Lillibridge who had a terrific last year and has been really good against lefties the last two years.
"Struggled some this year but very versatile, very athletic player, can play all infield positions, outfield, run the bases, dangerous hitter."
Like Youkilis, Lillibridge was pulled in the ninth inning of Sunday's game against the Brewers. When informed of the trade to Boston by Chicago skipper Robin Ventura, he celebrated the move, considering he has family in Rhode Island.
With his versatile style, Lillibridge is bracing himself for the unpredictable. On any given day, the utility man could find himself at any position and it's a reality that he's prepared to accept.
"I'm ready and willing to do whatever it takes, whether it's the infield or the outfield to play this game," Lillibridge said. "And play it well."
Thus, begins life without Youkilis.
Photo via Twitter/@RedSox
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