Aceves piques Francona's interest

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- When the Boston Red Sox signed pitcher Alfredo Aceves as a free agent on Feb. 8, the club knew it was taking a chance on the right-handed reliever.

He spent the last three seasons with the New York Yankees, but was limited to 10 games last year because of a strained lower back. After he was granted free agency, it didn’t take long for the Sox to sign him.

“He’s a pretty interesting guy,” Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. “Fastball, changeup, breaking ball -- he’s got all three pitches and he loves to compete. He’s a real interesting guy.”

Aceves arrived at camp healthy and in good shape. He made his Grapefruit League debut on Tuesday against the Minnesota Twins at Hammond Stadium and worked two scoreless innings. He allowed one hit and one walk.

“Two innings my first time out, I feel pretty good,” Aceves said. “So far, so good.”

Aceves deemed himself 100 percent healthy. He’s always running and working out and has really impressed Francona and the rest of the staff.

“He’s a maniac,” Francona said. “He does more. He’s obviously a very intense kid, but he’s interesting.

“He’s a major league pitcher. He can potentially give us starting depth, he can throw out of the bullpen. He had some back issues that probably cost him a major league contract. I think we caught a break.”

Fellow reliever Dennys Reyes tossed a live BP session at City of Palms Park today, and he’s been scheduled for one more before he sees game action.