Papi: Aceves should be in rotation, not 'pen

Papi: Aceves should be in rotation, not 'pen

BOSTON -- David Ortiz has seen enough of Alfredo Aceves this season, and enough from the Red Sox's rotation recently, to make an assumption: Aceves should be starting.

With the Red Sox's rotation owning a 6.10 ERA this month, which ranks 29th, and 21st overall this season (4.27 ERA), Boston's designated hitter thinks it's time for Aceves to start pitching every fifth day.

"To be honest with you, the way things are going, he should be starting," Ortiz said. "Simple as that. Give it a shot."

Aceves pitched three more innings of clean baseball in Monday's 6-5 loss to the Orioles, striking out four, including two with runners on second and third in the seventh inning. He leads the Majors with 12 relief outings of at least three innings, seven of which have been scoreless.

"You see how easy he gets hitters out?" Ortiz said. "I think at one point, he might be a starter. I don't know. It all depends on what our front office decides. He's got good stuff, man. And we definitely need a guy who can come in and give us six or seven good innings. It seems like he's capable of doing it. We'll see.

"We still have like what, 10 games? Nine games? You never know. It's not going to be tomorrow. He threw [53 pitches] today. But he's got electric stuff. And we've been saying that for a while, right?"

Aceves has made four starts this season, going 1-1 with a 5.14 ERA in 21 innings. As a reliever, he's 8-1 with a 2.14 ERA.

"He's been a guy we've thrown into 10 roles and he's been great at all of them," said Dustin Pedroia. "We're proud of him and glad he's on our team."

Despite the request of Ortiz, manager Terry Francona has said he prefers Aceves in the bullpen right now, given his ability to go multiple innings. But Francona was impressed with the pitcher's performance in Game 1 of Monday's doubleheader.

"Aceves has been doing that time and time again," the skipper said. "The one time he got himself into a bind, he pitched his way out of it. I wish he was available in the second game. Knowing Aceves, he'll want to be."

Jason Mastrodonato is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.