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Ryan Kalish made a good impression during his stay in Boston in the summer of 2010.
If you asked 100 Red Sox fans who they'd most like to see manning right field on opening day there would be a good percentage who would utter the name " Ryan Kalish".
Kalish who will be 24 on March 28th is an intriguing player for both the fans as well as the Red Sox management. He may in fact be the starting right fielder in Boston. It seems unlikely that he'll have that role locked down by Opening Day 2012 though.
Coming off an injury plagued 2011 season Kalish recently underwent an additional surgical procedure. The procedure was to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder, his throwing shoulder. The rehabilitation is expected to extend into the 2012 regular season. It's an additional setback for a player who's athletic ability has peaked Sox fans' interest since his 2010 stint in the majors.
Kalish's athleticism is not up for debate. At 6'0 and 215 pounds he possesses speed as well as some power. He displayed both of those traits at various times during the 53 games he spent with the Red Sox in the summer of 2010. He wasn't really supposed to be in Boston but due to what seemed like a never ending string of injuries that season his services became needed and he responded quite well.
He only hit .252 but he clubbed four home runs and swiped 10 bases. He also played very respectable center field. Kalish also spent some time in left and even played two games in right field as well. He looked comfortable in all three spots.
The problem for Kalish is experience. Entering this coming season Kalish has only played in 59 games at triple A.
That means between the majors and the highest level of the minors Kalish has amassed about two thirds of a full season. His career minor league numbers seem to suggest that his ability to consistently hit could be a problem and as of now his body of work at the highest levels of professional baseball likely aren't large enough to compel the Red Sox to hand him a starting position.
Ryan Kalish might be the right fielder of the future but that future seems unlikely to be in 2012.