BOSTON — The ball drifted to the center-field wall at Fenway Park, toward the mini triangle in left-center.

It was a catchable ball and, indeed, regular Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. would have hauled it in.

But Mookie Betts has limited experience as an outfielder, and none as a major league center fielder, let alone at the quirky confines of Fenway. Betts slowed up and the ball bounced against the lower portion of the wall, for a Nate Schierholtz double in the second inning Monday night.

But Schierholtz was stranded, so no harm. Betts handled all his other chances cleanly. At the plate, Betts went 0 for 3, as the Boston Red Sox managed only two singles in a 2-0 loss to the Chicago Cubs.

Betts is 21 (six days younger than Xander Bogaerts) and he is in Boston. He is not here to get a taste of the majors as part of his development.

Betts is here to help – now.

“We made changes to improve our roster,” Red Sox Manager John Farrell said. “We felt like internal changes were the way to go right now.

“In Mookie’s case, we’re looking to get contributions … Looking for energy. Looking for talented players to join the veterans that are here.”

Farrell is looking for something to jump-start an offense that ranks last in the American League in runs scored.

Betts is lucky to be here, if you adhere to the adage that luck equals talent, hard work and opportunity.

About this time last year, Betts was moving from low Class A to advanced Class A. He began this season in Portland.

Betts batted .355 (.443 on-base percentage) in 54 games with Portland. Promoted, he batted .322 (.425) in 23 games for Pawtucket.

Now 73 games above Class A, Betts is in the majors.

To put that in perspective, fast-moving Red Sox prospect Bogaerts spent 116 games above Class A.

“His ascent through the system has been rapid,” Farrell said of Betts.

The opportunity came when Shane Victorino could not make it through his rehab without being injured again – this time his back. (It was a Victorino injury that kept Bradley on the roster at the start of the season).

Betts played right field in his major league debut Sunday in Yankee Stadium, with Bradley in center (Brock Holt moved from right field to third base, and Bogaerts sat).

On Monday, it was Bradley’s turn to sit. Farrell said Bradley will likely be back in center Tuesday. He didn’t say who was sitting.

“There’s going to be a little rotation of guys through four positions,” Farrell said.

Farrell also said he would not hesitate putting Betts in right field at Fenway – quite a challenge for a converted infielder. Of course, the athletic Holt handled it, so the thinking is that the athletic Betts can, too.

Holt (batting .321) is likely to stay in the lineup as much as possible.

It is a gamble to play Betts in center, with the golden glove of Bradley. But these are desperate times for Boston. And while Bradley is showing signs of coming around, he’s still batting only .207.

So Betts gets a shot. And in another sign that he is not at Hadlock Field anymore, Betts approached his locker before the game, finding a healthy crowd of media waiting for him.

He was asked about being a “savior” for the Red Sox.

“No. I’m not the savior of the team,” Betts said. “I just come out to play. I think they’ve been doing fine. So I’m just coming here to contribute, to do my part.”

He was half-right. Betts is not a savior. But the Red Sox are not doing fine.

But they could use a spark from Betts to help get them going.