There’s been an elevated give attention to the Red Sox farm system.
That’s to be anticipated when a group is underperforming, struggling, or rebuilding on the main league stage; when the current isn’t enjoyable, flip to the longer term.
Entering the season the Red Sox farm ranked wherever from tenth (Baseball America) to twenty third (Keith Law, The Athletic). On the brilliant aspect, BA ranked Boston of their top-10 for the primary time in over half a decade; a major bounce from once they ranked lifeless final in 2019.
On the opposite hand, Law wonders if there’s a “future MLB starter anywhere on their full-season rosters.” By his analysis, Boston’s “group of position-player prospects is probably in the upper half of farm systems, but their group of pitching prospects is one of the weakest.”
It’s price noting that Brayan Bello exceeded his rookie eligibility final season and doesn’t issue into Law’s equation. Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez believes that Bello has Cy Young potential.
Down on the farm, Marcelo Mayer is the group’s undisputed No. 1 prospect, and MLB.com’s No. 9 prospect within the recreation. The 20-year-old shortstop is poised to inherit Xander Bogaerts’ throne within the not-so-distant future, which is considerably ironic, given Mayer’s San Diego roots. But his debut remains to be a methods away, provided that he’s nonetheless adjusting to final yr’s promotion to High-A Greenville.
After a few month of minor league play (Opening Day varies by stage), listed here are among the standouts from every Red Sox affiliate. The Florida Complex League groups will start in June.
Triple-A: Worcester off to middling begin regardless of standouts
Much like their main league counterparts, the WooSox have gotten off to a middling begin. They’ve proven flashes of brilliance, however are principally making an attempt to get their heads above .500.
One of the 2 prospects acquired from the Houston Astros in final summer season’s Christian Vázquez commerce, Wilyer Abreu boasts energy and defensive prowess. The 24-year-old outfielder collected 15 hits in 15 April video games, together with three doubles and a pair of house runs, 9 runs scored, and 6 RBI.
David Hamilton made organizational historical past in 2022, stealing a Double-A report 70 bases, and he’s already on his approach to outdoing himself in Triple-A this season. The 25-year-old infielder stole 14 bases in 22 April video games, together with one on WooSox Opening Day. He may hit; he went 24-for-85 over the month, with 4 doubles, a triple, and a team-leading 4 house runs. The solely query now’s when he’ll get to Boston.
Bryan Mata, Chris Murphy and Brandon Walter entered the yr because the trio of arms to look at in Worcester, however it was a mixed-bag month. Mata didn’t have a scoreless outing till his fifth of the season and allowed 11 earned runs over the earlier 4 video games (14.1 innings). Walter had the same challenge, permitting 2-5 earned runs in 4 of his 5 April begins, although he’s thrown essentially the most innings of the group. Aside from one very tough 8-run, 1-inning outing, Murphy was extra in management on the mound, permitting two earned runs or much less in his different three begins.
Double-A: Drohan, Yorke lead surging Sea Dogs
Entering Sunday the Portland Sea Dogs boasted the very best report in all of Double-A, leaping out to a 16-5 begin due to some glorious beginning pitching performances, most notably from 24-year-old lefty Shane Drohan.
Coming off a robust 2022 through which he ranked No. 17 within the minors with 157 strikeouts, Drohan has picked up proper the place he left off and emerged as one of many quickest rising pitching prospects within the Red Sox group. Through his first 4 begins Drohan was an ideal 4-0 with a 0.78 ERA, permitting two runs over 23 innings. He’s additionally struck out 26 whereas strolling simply 4, and his fastball velocity has ticked as much as the mid-90s after sitting extra within the 88-92 mph vary beforehand.
Sterling Sharp (2.95 ERA, 21.1 innings) and Brian Van Belle (0.95, 17.0) have been nice as properly, and nearer Luis Guerrero (4 saves) has turned heads with a fastball now touching 100 mph.
Among the place gamers, essentially the most encouraging growth by far has been the efficiency of former first-round decide Nick Yorke.
The Red Sox Minor League Offensive Player of the Year in 2021, Yorke endured a tough 2022 through which he battled via a number of accidents and noticed his manufacturing fall off a cliff. Yorke went from Baseball America’s preseason No. 31 general prospect to unranked after batting .232 with an unimpressive .668 OPS at High-A Greenville, however since being promoted to Double-A he’s seemed extra like his previous self.
This season Yorke is batting .284 with a team-high three house runs and .967 OPS. He’s as soon as once more strolling practically as typically as he’s placing out (13 walks to 17 strikeouts) and on Friday he got here inside a single of hitting for the cycle.
It’s nonetheless early and he nonetheless has an extended approach to go in his growth, however not less than for now any considerations about Yorke doubtlessly changing into a bust look vastly untimely.
Outfielder Ceddanne Rafaela, Boston’s breakout prospect from final season, additionally began the season in Double-A to proceed engaged on his offensive strategy and is thus far seeing outcomes. Rafaela is batting .303 with a .746 OPS together with 13 RBI and eight stolen bases, and his protection in heart subject has been present stopping as typical.
One different much less identified prospect to regulate? Corey Rosier. Originally acquired within the Jay Groome-Eric Hosmer deal, Rosier is batting .310 whereas main the group with 10 stolen bases.
High-A: Mayer working again from gradual begin with Drive
The Greenville Drive acquired off to a 7-13 begin, and Marcelo Mayer acquired off to a slow-ish begin of his personal.
The No. 1 prospect went 9-for-37 with 5 walks and 11 strikeouts over his first 9 video games (together with 4 hitless contests). While he discovered a extra constant rhythm because the month went on, going 8-for-30 over his final eight video games with three doubles, eight walks, and 9 strikeouts, he was considerably missing within the extra-base division general: solely 4 doubles, a triple, and one house run in April.
He struggled to hit for further bases in High-A final season too, after being promoted from Low-A Salem, however currently has gotten going and is hitting .254 on the yr general.
Meanwhile, Blaze Jordan introduced the facility in April: 21 hits (together with 4 house runs), a .852 OPS, 10 runs and 14 RBI. What the infielder didn’t carry was plate self-discipline; he struck out 19 occasions in 19 video games and solely drew 5 walks.
Nathan Hickey continued displaying off his critical energy potential; the 2021 draft decide’s 14 April hits included 5 doubles, a triple, and pair of house runs, and he walked (11) nearly as a lot as he struck out (15). His work behind the dish leaves loads to be desired, however there’s no rule stating he has to remain as a catcher perpetually; Kenley Jansen definitely didn’t.
Angel Bastardo’s excessive ERA is a product of small pattern measurement, however 14 earned runs on 17 hits in 4 begins isn’t ultimate. Still, when he’s on, he’s actually on, and he struck out 26 batters throughout 19 innings in April.
Isaac Coffey fared considerably higher. While he, too, allowed 17 hits over his 4 April begins, he was capable of maintain opposing lineups to 9 earned runs. The caveat is that seven of mentioned runs had been homers. Still, he solely issued two walks, and struck out 30 batters in 20.2 innings.
Low-A: Bleis making prompt affect at Salem
If you aren’t already accustomed to Miguel Bleis, you may wish to begin paying consideration, as a result of the Red Sox high worldwide signing from 2021 has the potential to develop right into a five-tool famous person.
After dominating the Florida Complex League final summer season, the 19-year-old outfielder has gotten off to a robust begin in his first season of affiliated baseball. Bleis leads the Salem Red Sox with 22 hits and 12 RBI via 19 video games, batting .274 with a .714 OPS and 6 stolen bases.
Fellow outfielder Roman Anthony, one in all Boston’s high picks in final summer season’s MLB Draft, has gotten off to a slower begin with a .200 common, however he additionally has a .363 on-base share due to his strolling practically as typically as he’s struck out (16 walks to 17 strikeouts).
Arguably the most efficient gamers in Salem thus far have been outfielder Juan Chacon (.821 OPS) and shortstop Luis Ravelo (.815 OPS), the latter of whom ranks because the No. 26 prospect in Boston’s system in line with MLB Pipeline.
Shortstop Mikey Romero, Boston’s first-round decide from final summer season, is presently on the 7-day IL with again stiffness and has but to make his season debut in Salem.
As for the pitching, lefty reliever Nathan Landry has gotten off to an almost good begin. The 23-year-old has began the season with 10.1 scoreless innings in his first eight appearances, permitting solely six hits and three walks alongside the way in which whereas placing out 11.
Dalton Rogers, a third-round decide from final summer season, has additionally dominated the Low-A contest thus far. Through his first three begins the ex-Missouri lefty has struck out 18 batters in solely 9.2 innings, good for practically two punchouts per inning.