For days, Jose Iglesias insisted he was feeling comfortable at the plate, even though he didn't have any hits to show for it.
On Thursday night, the Boston Red Sox shortstop finally got some results.
Iglesias notched a pair of singles against Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price, then clocked his first major league homer against reliever J.P. Howell in the ninth inning of a 7-4 Red Sox loss at Tropicana Field.
"Just a good game," Iglesias said. "Nothing changed. I've been doing the same thing the last few days. Fortunately today I found a hole. I feel pretty good."
Entering the game, Iglesias was only 2-for-35 (.057) since being called up from Class AAA Pawtucket. Last Sunday, manager Bobby Valentine opted to pinch-hit for him midway through an at-bat when a runner moved into scoring position.
However, Iglesias insists he hasn't lost any confidence.
"I think the more important thing is you just stay positive in this game and you don't focus about the results," Iglesias said. "If you're healthy and you're on the field and helping the team, good things are going to happen."
Iglesias has made five consecutive starts at shortstop for the Red Sox, who are endeavoring to determine if he's a viable enough hitter to play every day next season. Iglesias is a slick fielder, often compared to former New York Mets Gold Glove shortstop Rey Ordonez.
"It's all a Catch-22," Valentine said. "If he doesn't play all the time or doesn't play regularly, is he getting into a groove so you can get a good feel for him? It's just, like so many other things at this time of the year, it's all tough to balance."