Now that they have traded Jose Iglesias the burning question for the Red Sox involves who will play third base. Last night at least it was Brock Holt called up earlier in the day from Triple-A Pawtucket.

Before long though it will be either Will Middlebrooks or Xander Bogaerts.

Middlebrooks was demoted to Triple A five weeks ago during which time he’s batting only .246 with a .301 on-base percentage and six homers in 126 at-bats. He went 0-for-2 before getting ejected from yesterday’s game against Norfolk and is stuck in a 2-for-20 funk.
So Middlebrooks clearly has not yet regained his swing.

“He’s a very talented player who got to the big leagues fairly quickly” general manager Ben Cherington said of Middlebrooks. “He had some success and like a lot of talented players who play in the big leagues for a long time he hit a little bit of a speed bump.

But he’ll get past it. He’ll be back in the big leagues when the time is right. We don’t know when that is.”

Bogaerts’ time may be fast approaching.

Arguably the top prospect in all of baseball Bogaerts is 25-for-75 (.333) with seven doubles four homers and 13 RBI in his last 21 games for Pawtucket despite being the youngest player (age 20) in the International League.

Red Sox manager John Farrell admitted that Bogaerts is “in the discussion” to take over at third base even though the natural shortstop has made only five starts at third in Triple A.

“In talking with (PawSox manager Gary DiSarcina) there is still some things he’s working on defensively whether that’s at shortstop or at third base” Farrell said of Bogaerts. “There’s still work being done. So if we were to say that he’s the guy we know there’s going to be further development needed at the big league level which is not uncommon.”

For now the Red Sox are seeking to preserve as much depth as possible. Brandon Snyder who figures to split time with Holt at third base can’t be sent to the minors without being exposed to waivers. Holt meanwhile increases the infield versatility with his ability to also play shortstop and second base.

That said the Sox aren’t likely to stick with a Snyder/Holt platoon down the stretch.

“We’ll put the best team on the field that’s available” Farrell said. “Right now it’s between Brock and Brandon. We’re just kind of letting the dust settle a little bit right now.”

Also the Sox are trying to figure out whether Middlebrooks or Bogaerts is the best solution.