Xander Bogaerts Has Important Message For Padres Teammates

The San Diego Padres roster is littered with shortstops. Fernando Tatis Jr.... Ha-Seong Kim (a Gold Glove Award finalist in 2022)... Even Manny Machado has played more than his share there in his career. But the newest member of the Padres, Xander Bogaerts, was given a lot of money to play short. And he has no intention of giving up the position anytime soon:

Obviously, we have guys that are capable of playing multiple positions, guys that have played pretty well — all the positions, including my position. So I just got to try to lock that down and make sure no one comes for it.

                                                                                —Xander Bogaerts, shortstop

The 10-year veteran and four-time All-Star finished at or near the Top 10 shortstops in 2022 in Outs Above Average and Defensive Runs Saved. His defense has improved over the years. 

After signing an 11-year, $280M contract with the Friars, Bogaerts intends to stick at the keystone as long as he can. He did play a little third base in his first couple of seasons in the majors, and it's thought that he could eventually transition there, depending on what becomes of current 3B Manny Machado. 

“I have 11 more years," said Bogaerts in talking with Padres beat writer Dennis Lin of The Athletic. "So I got to be smart with my body. I’m not saying I’m not going to dive. If I’m going to get it, I’m going to dive. But I’m not diving with zero-percent out probability. But yeah, I do really want to stay there as long as possible, and I look forward to being there for quite some years.”