These Five Moments Encapsulated Xander Bogaerts’ Red Sox Career

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Xander Bogaerts grew into the role of a leader and a superstar with the Boston Red Sox.

The Red Sox earned every benefit of this international free agent signing in 2009. Bogaerts debuted in 2013 and never looked back during 10 seasons with the team before signing a megadeal with the San Diego Padres after the 2022 campaign.

Bogaerts played an integral role on championship teams in 2013 and 2018. His role evolved during those years and eventually molded him as a staple of the franchise.

With that in mind as Bogaerts (out with a shoulder injury) returns to Fenway Park for a weekend series, these five moments stand out when reflecting on Bogaerts’ impactful Red Sox career.

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2021 – American League Wild Card Game
Bogaerts set the tone for the Red Sox with his bat and his arm in a game that’s hard to feature higher stakes: a one-game playoff at Fenway Park against Boston’s greatest rival in the New York Yankees.

The Boston shortstop got the scoring started when he ambushed a two-run home run to center field off Yankees ace Gerrit Cole, sending the Fenway Park crowd into blaring pandemonium with an early lead.

Bogaerts reached base three times and scored two runs on the night. Later in the game with the Red Sox leading 3-1, Giancarlo Stanton hit his second missile off the Green Monster. With Aaron Judge attempting to score, Bogaerts received the throw from Kiké Hernández and fired a strike home to catcher Kevin Plawecki, who slapped the tag on the New York baserunner on a perfect relay to preserve the score.

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The Red Sox ultimately won the game 6-2 after a well-rounded performance from their star infielder.

2013- First Career Home Run
Speaking of the rivalry, Bogaerts’ first memorable MLB moment came at Yankee Stadium on Sept. 7, 2013.

Just weeks before the Red Sox took home another championship, Bogaerts lifted his first big-league home run over the bullpen in left center field.

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Bogaerts hit 156 home runs across his decade of time with the Red Sox.

2018 – Walk-Off Grand Slam
The 2018 Red Sox offered a new age of power after struggling in that category a year prior. Boston did not hit a grand slam that season and that surely changed in 2018.

Bogaerts smashed three grand slams (!!!) on his own that season. No swing was bigger that summer for the Red Sox shortstop than launching a walk-off grand slam against the Toronto Blue Jays in a 6-2 win on July 14, 2018.

2013 – First Postseason Performances
Bogaerts had just 18 games of service time when the Red Sox began their 2013 postseason run that ultimately led to a World Series title.

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The then-20-year-old met the moment as a rookie, hitting .296 throughout the playoffs. Bogaerts had a key walk and a double off of Max Scherzer in the Game 6 clinching win of the American League Championship Series against the Detroit Tigers.

Bogaerts also stepped up the World Series with multiple hits on the road against the St. Louis Cardinals and held down third base when the final out was made in Game 6 at Fenway Park.

2021 – ALCS Game 4 Home Run
Bogaerts provided what may have been the final thrilling moment of positivity in a memorable 2021 postseason run.

The Red Sox star continued the party of Game 3 against the Houston Astros with a no-doubt, two-run blast to start the scoring in Game 4 that might still be soaring through the Boston sky.

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Unfortunately for Boston, that marked the end of the fun for the Red Sox as Houston rattled off three straight wins to return to the World Series.

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