Prized prospect Xander Bogaerts made his Red Sox debut last night, and in addition to putting his warmup shirt on backwards, went 0 for 3 while leaving five runners on base. The Red Sox left seven men on base in total in their 3-2 loss to the Giants.

Bogaerts grounded out to second base in his first at-bat with the bases loaded, and left two men in scoring position after he grounded out to shortstop in his second at-bat.

Though Bogaerts did make a nice play in the field, charging a ground ball and throwing Marco Scutaro out at first base to leave Joaquin Arias stranded at third in the fifth inning, he was removed as a part of a double switch in the bottom of the sixth.

It was not an ideal debut for Bogaerts, who manager John Farrell said will be in the lineup on a limited basis for the foreseeable future.

The Red Sox remain committed to playing Stephen Drew every day at shortstop, and will likely look to slot in Bogaerts primarily against left-handed pitchers. Drew is batting .195 against lefties on the season.

There is no guarantee that Bogaerts, who is just 20-years-old, will make an immediate impact in the major leagues. Dustin Pedroia, for example, hit .191 towards the tail end of the 2006 season.

Even if he does struggle while playing sporadically, the Red Sox believe this big league experience is valuable for Bogaerts. The club could be counting on him to be the everyday shortstop in 2014, and his six weeks in the major leagues this season could help him be more successful next season.

Bogaerts has a career .862 OPS in the minor leagues, and little left to prove against inferior pitching. It was time to call him up to the show.

One of the toughest lessons Bogaerts may have to learn, though, is that when you struggle in the major leagues, people notice. It is safe to assume the many calls to “DUMP BOGAERTS” on Twitter last night were made in jest. But with Red Sox fans, you never know.

 

 

 

 

Photo via Christopher Evans/Boston Herald