BOSTON -- Brock Holt's emergence from little-known reserve to super-utility man reached a new level on Monday, when he was selected to the American League All-Star team.
Holt is now a textbook example for any coach or manager who tells a player how valuable versatility is.
"I really honestly didn't think about it at all. It's something that just kind of happened," said Holt. "I just tried to go out and play hard every night and try to help give my team and our team a chance to win. I didn't really think about the All-Star team or being selected to the All-Star Game or anything like that. I'm very honored and humbled by the selection."
The left-handed hitter has ably played seven different positions for the Red Sox over the last two seasons. Holt was selected as a reserve by AL All-Star manager Ned Yost and is Boston's lone All-Star. However, that could change, as shortstop Xander Bogaerts is one of five candidates on the Final Vote ballot.
Though Holt was an invaluable player for the 2014 Red Sox, he again came into this season without a defined role after the club signed free agents Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez in the offseason.
But Holt has received plenty of playing time again this season, filling in at different positions in place of players who either need a rest or are nursing an injury.
Holt, 27, has played in 66 games this season, hitting .295 while compiling 15 doubles, four triples, two homers, 21 RBIs, a .383 on-base percentage and an .807 OPS.
Of late, Holt has been the starting second baseman while Dustin Pedroia is on the disabled list with a right hamstring strain.
"The first text message I got was from Dustin Pedroia," said Holt. "He's been to his fair share of All-Star Games. It was pretty special to hear from my teammates. [Clay] Buchholz came up and gave me a hug and said congrats, so that's pretty special, getting those hugs, handshakes and text messages from teammates who have been there and done it. They're just as happy for me probably as I am. That's huge."
In each of the last two seasons, Holt has played every position but pitcher and catcher.
Holt's starts this season have been divided as follows: 16 in right field; 14 at second; 12 at third; six at short; six in left; three at first; and two in center.
"Yeah, it's crazy, man. Honestly, I never expected to be playing outfield in the Major Leagues or first base in the Major Leagues or even third base," said Holt. "I had never played it until I came over to the Red Sox. Like I said earlier, everything kind of happens for a reason. I felt like I was kind of given the ability to move around like that for a reason and it happened to work out for me. It's been great and it's been something I've enjoyed doing a lot."
That type of versatility will clearly come in handy for Ned Yost, who will manage the AL in the All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile on July 14.
"I'm going to take my outfielder's glove, take my infielder's glove and take it from there," Holt said. "If they tell me to go in, I'll go in. If not, I'll just enjoy the sights and the sounds and take it all in."
It has been an impressive rise for Holt, who was optioned to Triple-A during Spring Training in 2014, and again early in that regular season.
The Red Sox acquired Holt from the Pirates along with closer Joel Hanrahan in exchange for Mark Melancon on Dec. 26, 2012. At the time, Holt was perceived as a throw-in in that deal. But Hanrahan was injured early in his time with the Red Sox while Holt developed into a cornerstone of the team.
"I knew if I was capable of playing that amount of spots, I might be able to stick," said Holt. "I guess last year kind of was a stepping stone for me in that direction."
And the voting doesn't end with the Final Vote. During the Midsummer Classic in Cincinnati, fans can once again visit MLB.com to submit their choice for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. Voting exclusively at MLB.com, online and via their mobile devices in the 2015 All-Star Game MVP Vote presented by Chevrolet, the fans collective voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
MLB.TV Premium subscribers will be able to live stream the All-Star Game via MLB.TV through FOX's participating video providers. Access will be available across more than 400 support MLB.TV platforms, including the award-winning MLB.com At Bat app. MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities, including the 2015 Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders, part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day on July 13. The derby will feature a new format with brackets and timed rounds and will be broadcast live by ESPN and MLB.com.
The 86th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnetand RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 160 countries. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.