Valentine seeing what he has in Iglesias


Valentine seeing what he has in Iglesias

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Until he arrived in Florida last month, manager Bobby Valentine said he never watched shortstop prospect Jose Iglesias play in person.

In the last few days, Valentine has had an opportunity to watch Iglesias play a few games, hitting him in the leadoff spot to give the flashy infielder additional plate appearances.

There's little dispute about Iglesias's defensive aptitude, but his offense needs work.

"(The at-bats) have been OK," said Valentine Monday before Iglesias hit leadoff again against the Minnesota Twins Monday night at Hammond Stadium. "I don't think his technique is what he needs it to be, but his at-bats have been good.

"We start adding a little more technique, a little more rhythm, something to give him the ability to recognize the pitch a little earlier so he can time it when it gets to the plate, I think he might be close."

Valentine termed Iglesias "outstanding," when it comes to willingness to learn and improve.

Valentine has already noted that Iglesias is skilled at tracking popups, referencing two running catches the shortstop made in a game against the Twins last Thursday.

"He has a special tracking device on fly balls," Valentine said, "unique to very few. And he has a special ability to transfer the ball from glove to hand. That's all I've gotten to see. I don't know about the specialness of moving off the bat and range and game-awareness -- those things.

"But I can tell you that he can transfer the ball (from glove to hand) from a longer distance than just about anybody I've ever seen. And he has the GPS in his mind. He can really track pop-ups. I dare say that no one (else) in this camp (could have made those plays last week). Very few others -- Ozzie (Smith), Rey Ordonez could do that."

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Celtics draft night recap


BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Celtics draft night recap

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0:41 - Danny Ainge on why he saw Jayson Tatum as the best player in the draft, Kristaps Porzingis rumors, and why Josh Jackson canceled his Celtics draft workout.

4:49 - Rich Gotham joins to discuss taking Jayson Tatum with the 3rd overall pick, being patient with the development of players and if there were any potential trades out there.

9:53 - Kyle Draper, A. Sherrod Blakely, and Brian Scalabrine break down the selection of Jayson Tatum and talk about the rumor that the Celtics were in discussions with the Pacers for Paul George. 

13:15 - Tom Giles, Michael Holley, and Kayce Smith debate if it was worth trading down to the 3rd pick to draft Tatum and how Tatum will always be compared to Markelle Fultz for his whole career.