ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — When Michael Chavis’ locker was still empty two hours before the game Friday night, speculation rose that travel issues had arisen.

“He’ll get here in a little bit,” Boston Red Sox Manager Alex Cora said.

Chavis didn’t arrive at Tropicana Field until the third inning Friday, when the Sox already were eyeing him for a pinch-hit situation. Chavis’ driver dropped him off at the wrong gate and he had to walk through three parking lots with his baseball bag and personal luggage to find the players’ entrance.

By the time he finally walked in, the Red Sox were ready to use him.

“I walked in wearing jeans and a shirt, and they’re like, ‘Hey, get ready to hit in two batters,’ ” Chavis said. “I thought they were messing with me. There’s no way. I was in jeans and a T-shirt, hadn’t stretched, no way. They were being serious. I got ready, took swings off a tee, and luckily Christian Vazquez hit a bomb so I didn’t have to hit.

“That would have been a tough first big league at-bat, just off a plane, a little arm stretch and get going. It was a hectic day.”

Chavis finally got the opportunity to pinch hit  Saturday night. Entering a tie game in the ninth inning with a runner on first, he launched a double to center field off Tampa Bay Rays reliever Jose Alvarado in his first major league at bat. Jackie Bradley Jr. went to third base on Chavis’ double and scored the winning run on a sacrifice fly by Andrew Benintendi in Boston’s 6-5 victory.

Chavis got his first start Sunday, playing second base and finishing 0 for 4 with a walk before being replaced by Tzu-Wei Lin in the 11th inning of Boston’s 4-3 win.

Chavis’ wild weekend started because the Red Sox weren’t expecting to call him up. They planned on summoning Lin, but when Eduardo Nunez also needed to hit the injured list Friday due to a back strain, Chavis was a late addition to the active roster.

“I flew out (Friday) at 11 a.m.,” he said. “I woke up to three missed phone calls, thought I messed something up. Found out I was going to the big leagues and I was just waking up like, no way.

“My brother actually beat me here because my flight took so long. He drove from Alabama. Because my flight took so long he got here and was like, ‘Where are you?’ I was like, ‘I’m in the air.’ I had Wi-Fi on the flights and getting texts from people on staff and I’m like, ‘I’m literally in the air!’ ”

Chavis was hitting .250 with a .954 OPS and four homers in 12 games in Triple-A Pawtucket.

“I don’t really know if I’d call myself a fast starter,” he said. “I just keep the same approach every day, stay consistent. I was hot in the first game, then had a skid there, but I feel good about how I’m playing and going about my business every day.”

Chavis played 100 Double-A games with the Portland Sea Dogs over parts of the 2017 and 2018 seasons, hitting .268 with 20 home runs and an .834 OPS. Though he played five games at second base this spring in Pawtucket, he’s a natural shortstop who primarily played third base since being drafted 26th overall in 2014. He’s not expected to play much second base with Lin also on the roster.

“Feel pretty good at second,” Chavis said. “We worked on it a lot in spring training. That’s where I started my second-base work. And doing early work every day, all the turns, different angle off the bat, just the footwork off the bag, double plays and everything. Just preparing every day, letting it translate to the game. I feel more and more comfortable every day.”

Dustin Pedroia, who was teaching Rafael Devers some things on the field before Saturday’s game, said he’s planning on helping Chavis learn the position.

“We’re all here to help in any way,” Pedroia said. “Everybody here knows the goal is to win and it takes everybody. Anything you can do to help. Everyone here is here to help and give everyone a boost. We just want to make sure whoever comes in, if it’s their first time, we welcome them and they’re comfortable, so they can relax and play. We’ll do our best to make it happen. Just play. Have fun. It’s the same game.”


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