What position will Brock Holt play in the All-Star Game?


We know that Brock Holt will be the lone representative for the Boston Red Sox in the 2015 MLB All-Star Game Tuesday night, but what we don’t know is what position he will be playing.

Holt has developed a reputation as the game’s most versatile defender, having logged time at every position this season except for pitcher and catcher. Boston’s Swiss-Army knife will come off the bench for the American League team, with manager Ned Yost having the luxury of putting him in the game at virtually any spot.

So which spot will the AL squad need him in most?

Second base is the position that Holt has played more than any other this season. With Dustin Pedroia sidelined on the disabled list the Red Sox have counted on Holt to fill the position in his absence. He has appeared in 25 games as a second baseman this season, including 19 starts.

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Houston’s Jose Altuve will get the start at second base, with Cleveland’s Jason Kipnis backing him up. Altuve won a batting title last year and Kipnis is third in the league among position players with a 4.7 WAR. If that weren’t enough, Minnesota’s Brian Dozier, who leads all second basemen with 19 home runs, was added to the roster when Toronto’s Jose Bautista bowed out with a shoulder injury. It’s safe to say the AL team has second base covered.

With Bautista unavailable for the game it leaves the team an outfielder short, with only Detroit’s J.D. Martinez and New York’s Brett Gardner available off the bench. Unless Yost plans on using Mike Trout for the full 9 innings (not a bad idea if he really wants to win), the AL team may be in need of a sixth outfielder. While Holt is listed on the roster as an infielder, there’s a solid chance of him entering the game as an outfield replacement.

Holt has played 12 games in left, 2 games in center and 17 games in right field this season. He’s capable of filling any of those spots, so where he is used may boil down to where the other outfield reserves are needed.

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Martinez has played exclusively in right field this year, so while he does have experience in left in the past, let’s assume that he will be used in right. Gardner mostly plays in left field, but only because the Yankees have Jacoby Ellsbury patrolling center. He has spent significant time in center throughout his career and has made 26 starts at the position this season while Ellsbury was on the disabled list. Holt is a capable center fielder, but Gardner is an elite fielder and would be a better choice for that spot. If Holt is needed in the outfield, it most likely will be in left field.

The AL team is fairly stacked in the infield, but the one weak spot is shortstop. Alcides Escobar was voted in by ambitious Royals fans, but is pretty clearly the weak link among the starters. Yost may be inclined to give one of his guys some decent run in this game, but Detroit’s Jose Iglesias is the only true shortstop on the bench. Given the shallow depth at the position, Holt is needed most as a shortstop.

Ideally Holt will replace Escobar at shortstop after a few innings. Iglesias can be brought in as a late game defensive replacement, while Holt’s versatility could allow him to stay in the game by shifting to left field for the rest of the game.

No matter where he ends up playing, Holt has a chance to steal the spotlight and show a national audience why the Brock Star is an All-Star.