The Red Sox wanted to improve their infield depth and this is an improvement -- but by centimeters instead of inches. Aviles, 30, was hitting .222/.261/.395 with the Royals this year. He has the ability to play three infield positions (second, short and third) with sure hands and below-average range and footspeed. His strength offensively is his ability to hit left-handers, as demonstrated by his .807 career OPS against them, and a .309/.344/.600 triple-slash line in 55 at-bats this year. He also has an option remaining, giving the Red Sox some roster flexibility when Jed Lowrie is reinstated from the disabled list.
The Royals get Navarro, 23, who hit .216/.275/351 for the Red Sox this year in just 16 games. He’s a tools player with athletic potential. He has quick, soft hands and average speed. His arm is above average and he has above-average bat speed as well. The bat is questionable but he might develop into a role player. Volz, 23, was the Boston’s ninth-round selection in the June 2009 free agent draft. His fastball comes in at 87-90 mph and has good sink, but he has to spot it on both sides of the black for him to be effective. He has a slider that is 78-80 mph with potential to improve when it becomes more consistent. He also will mix in a circle change. Overall, Volz profiles as a potential 10th or 11th pitcher on a major league staff.
RED SOX: C
ROYALS: Grade C+