TORONTO -- Jose Iglesias got a few firsts out of the way in his first three days in the Majors. There was the game-ending grounder he fielded on Sunday. Then, the walk-off run he scored Monday. And on Tuesday, Iglesias struck out in his first career at-bat, but reached base anyway thanks to a wild pitch.
But on Wednesday, Iglesias, who is the No. 42 prospect on MLB.com's Top 50 Prospects list, took the biggest step of all, making his first Major League start. With Jed Lowrie continuing to be hindered by an illness, Iglesias was inserted into manager Terry Francona's starting nine, batting ninth and playing short.
"Jed's sick," Francona said prior to the Red Sox's 9-3 loss. "Jed's been fighting it. He got a pretty good fever last night and it's not really been subsiding today. I told him to kind of take it easy a little bit, see if he improves, maybe pinch-hit him later -- with the day off tomorrow. He just looked terrible."
For Iglesias, who is arguably Boston's top position prospect, it will be a good opportunity to get experience.
"It's exciting," Francona said. "He's not going to be short on energy. Yeah, it's OK. I think we were kind of looking for a place to play him. Jed's been doing so well, it's kind of hard to take him out. But when Jed looks like a wet wash cloth, it's time to give him a night off."
Iglesias, who went 0-for-3 Wednesday, already has the skills to be an elite defender. His offense is a work in progress. In Tuesday's first at-bat, he was a little over-eager.
"That would be the word I would use -- aggressive," Francona said. "And that's been sort of the thing at Triple-A, too, which we know. He has a tendency early on to be swinging at a lot of pitches. Hopefully that's something that gets better with experience. He can do some things with the bat. Just, [with] plate discipline, sometimes that takes a while."
Iglesias was summoned from Triple-A Pawtucket because of a left oblique injury to backup shortstop Marco Scutaro.
Francona takes fine, avoids suspension
TORONTO -- Manager Terry Francona received an undisclosed fine from Major League Baseball for his ejection and heated argument with crew chief Joe West on Friday at Fenway. However, Francona will not be suspended.
There were multiple instances of contact between Francona and West, but it seemed incidental, and not caused by Francona.
Francona said he wasn't particularly worried he would be suspended.
"No, I didn't think so because the way things go, you hear pretty quick," he said. "If anything, I thought Joe should have fouled out. I thought I took the charge."
The argument started when a balk was called on Tim Wakefield. Francona simply wanted an explanation why, but managers are not allowed to come out of the dugout to argue step balks. After being ejected by Angel Hernandez, Francona sought an opinion from Hernandez on what the balk was for, but West intercepted him.
Wakefield reaches milestone in relief outing
TORONTO -- Tim Wakefield came into Wednesday's game in a bit of a no-win situation, runners at second and third and the Red Sox already down four runs in the bottom of the seventh.
But it was a milestone outing. Simply by throwing a pitch, Wakefield became the oldest player to appear in a game for the Red Sox. He is 44 years and 282 days. Catcher Deacon McGuire, who played just one game for the club, held the previous record back in 1908, at 44 years and 280 days.
"I'm very honored," Wakefield said Tuesday. "It means I've persevered through a lot and have been able to last this long. I feel very blessed and lucky at the same time."
But after a 9-3 loss on Wednesday, Wakefield didn't feel much like discussing a personal feat.
The veteran knuckleballer, who has been with the Red Sox since 1995, gave up three hits and no runs over 1 1/3 innings, walking none and striking out three.