McAdam: Valentine realized Iglesias isn't ready

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McAdam: Valentine realized Iglesias isn't ready

The first clue as to Jose Iglesias' fate may have come several days ago when Bobby Valentine said this about his young shortstop:

"I don't stop believing in a player until I see him kind of stop believing in himself. And I saw that the other day, I thought.He came into the dugout and he had that look of wonderment, of wondering, that I don't like to see. It's not the time to be searching. You can't go into a major-league season searching. You have to be confident."
When Iglesias was sent down Tuesday, it was seen as a victory for general manager Ben Cherington (who's long thought Iglesias isn't ready, offensively, for prime time) over Valentine (who hinted earlier in the spring that Iglesias might be his choice to start at shortstop). But CSNNE.com's Sean McAdam thinks it was more of a case of Valentine realizing Cherington was right.
"I think it was more of an evolution," said McAdam. "There was a change of heart and a realization that perhaps Iglesias wasn't ready."
So how did that realization come about?
"Earlier in camp, Valentine saw Iglesias performing at a higher level than he expected offensively," said McAdam.
But that changed.
"As camp went on," said McAdam, "and Iglesias started facing more major-league caliber pitchers who were using more of their arsenal . . . and he continued to struggle, I think as high as Valentine was on him, he realized that putting him in there now as the everyday starting shortstop was probably more than Iglesias could handle at this point."
That doesn't, however, change Iglesias' long-term potential.
"There's a lot there to like," said McAdam, "and I think everyone agrees: Jose Iglesias is the Red Sox' shortstop of the future."

Acciari notches first NHL goal in Bruins win over Predators

Acciari notches first NHL goal in Bruins win over Predators

BOSTON – It took until his 43rd game in the NHL to finally score his first goal with the Bruins, but Rhode Island native Noel Acciari said it made him appreciate it all the more when that moment finally did arrived on Tuesday night. The 25-year-old Acciari finished off a Riley Nash feed on a 3-on-1 odd-man rush that gave the Bruins an insurance goal they badly needed in a 4-1 win over the Nashville Predators at TD Garden.

Then David Pastrnak hit Acciari with a shaving cream pie to the face during the NESN broadcast as a way to commemorate his teammate’s big scoring moment, and Torey Krug immediately fished the puck out of the net to make certain that Acciari would get it.

So it was the best of both worlds with the team-oriented Acciari, who watched his Bruins win to go right along with his hallmark scoring moment that he’ll remember forever.

“Your first NHL goal is a special feeling and to finally have it, you know, like I said before I couldn’t have done it without the other guys, the other four, five guys on the ice. But it feels good,” said Acciari, who has a goal and four points in 24 games this season in Boston. “It just shows you how special it is. It’s not going to come the first game you play; it could come 10, 20, for me probably over 40, but it still feels the same.”

Clearly it’s more about providing a physical, heavy and aggressive opponent when Acciari suits up for the Black and Gold, and it’s less about providing offensive production that’s really a bonus from the fourth line. The focus on throwing hits, aggravating opponents and playing with extra energy have been a big part of Acciari’s game since his return from Providence, and that is absolutely been by design.

“I think I kind of strayed [from my strengths] when I got back from my injury – I kind of strayed away from the hitting game,” said Acciari. “Just getting in on the fore-check and, you know, just kind of getting back to that down in Providence was huge and kind of get my confidence up down there helped out a lot. So when I got the call up I was ready for anything.”

He’s certainly played like he was ready for anything while posting a goal and two points along with a plus-4 in his first four games back for the Bruins organization. Acciari did all of that while leading everybody in Tuesday night’s game with eight registered hits in the win over Nashville. So the 5-foot-10, 208-pound Acciari gave a pretty good example against the Predators of just what he can do with steady ice time and the trust of his teammates as all of the hockey clubs in the East gear up to finish strong for the playoffs.

Now all Acciari has to do is continue to play consistently, punish opposing players and chip in a little offense from time and time as he carves out a permanent role on Boston’s fourth line, and helps his team win a few along the way. 

Florio on issues NFL may face with Raiders in Las Vegas

Florio on issues NFL may face with Raiders in Las Vegas

Mike Florio joins Quick Slants to discuss the problems of the Raiders moving to Las Vegas, and the latest NFL rule changes.