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Boston Red Sox: Secondary Prospects Working to Improve Their Stock

Andrew MartinCorrespondent IIIMay 21, 2013

Boston Red Sox: Secondary Prospects Working to Improve Their Stock

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    The Boston Red Sox are deeply invested in player development and flush with a variety of young players who could be seen at Fenway Park in the coming years.

    In addition to the bigger names, the team has many secondary prospects who are working to improve their stock this season.

    Baseball America’s Jim Callis ranked Boston’s farm system as the fifth-best in the majors entering this season, which is indicative of the depth the team has throughout the organizaton.

    Just because a player doesn’t start off on the top of prospect lists doesn’t prohibit their future development. There are many youngsters in the Boston system who are just starting to make names for themselves and should be closely watched by the organization and fans.

    Click through for a 2013 season update on the best of the Red Sox’s secondary prospects.

Starting Pitcher Anthony Ranaudo

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    2013 Stats: 8 GS, 5-1, 1.67 ERA, 43 IP, 26 H, 8 ER, 13 BB, 46 K 

    Age: 23 

    Drafted: First round, 2010  

    Minor League Level: Double-A

    Quick Hit: After struggling with injuries and ineffectiveness since being drafted, big right-hander Anthony Ranaudo is finally starting to pitch to his draft position. He has been dominant in 2013, which WEEI’s Alex Speier attributes to a fastball that has been in the 93-97 mph range, and a powerful curveball.

Starting Pitcher Brandon Workman

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    2013 Stats: 8 G (7 GS), 5-1, 3.66 ERA, 46.2 IP, 36 H, 19 ER, 11 BB, 54 K 

    Age: 24 

    Drafted: Second round, 2010 

    Minor League Level: Double-A 

    Quick Hit: Brandon Workman may have one of the best all-around repertoires of any current pitcher in the Boston system. According to the Bangor Daily News’ Larry Mahoney, the right-hander has jumped out to his early success by featuring a 93-96 mph fastball, changeup, curveball and cutter that the team has just allowed him to start throwing again.

Second Baseman Mookie Betts

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    2013 Stats: 38 G, .263/.414/.489, 7 HR, 15 RBI, 10 SB, 29 R, 35 BB, 16 K 

    Age: 20 

    Drafted: Fifth round, 2011

    Minor League Level: Single-A

    Quick Hit: In addition to a cool name, the diminutive infielder (5’9”, 156 pounds) is proving to be an offensive force. WEEI’s Alex Speier wrote that Mookie Betts had just four extra-base hits in his first 25 games this season. Since then, he has collected 11 in 13 games. 

Second Baseman Sean Coyle

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    2013 Stats: 30 G, .248/.309/.537, 9 HR, 19 RBI, 11 SB, 28 R, 12 BB, 36 K 

    Age: 21 

    Drafted: Third round, 2010 

    Minor League Level: High-A 

    Quick Hit: Like Mookie Betts, Sean Coyle is another small second baseman (5’8”, 175 pounds) who is showing big power. Although he has cooled off recently, the right-handed hitter clubbed nine home runs in his first 17 games, operating primarily as a leadoff hitter.

Starting Pitcher Brian Johnson

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    2013 Stats: 7 GS, 1-3, 4.34 ERA, 29 IP, 27 H, 14 ER, 14 BB, 28 K 

    Age: 22 

    Drafted: First round, 2012 

    Minor League Level: Single-A

    Quick Hit: A polished college lefty, Brian Johnson’s 2012 season ended prematurely after he was struck in the face by a line drive while pitching in a minor league game at Fenway Park. 

    The pick that Boston used to select Johnson was compensation for losing closer Jonathan Papelbon to the Philadelphia Phillies, so expectations will be especially high as this year progresses.

Starting Pitcher Drake Britton

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    2013 Stats: 9 G (8 GS), 3-4, 4.79 ERA, 47 IP, 53 H, 25 ER, 18 BB, 44 K

    Age: 23  

    Drafted: 23rd round, 2007 

    Minor League Level: Double-A 

    Quick Hit: Plagued by injuries earlier in his career, Drake Britton was poised to make a major jump out of spring training until he was arrested for a public DUI. Although he faces up to a year in prison, his initial hearing was postponed until later in the year and the reprieve has allowed the southpaw to produce his most consistent numbers as a pro.

Catcher Christian Vazquez

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    2013 Stats: 28 G, .267/.385/.378, 2 HR, 13 RBI, 21 R, 17 BB, 14 K

    Age: 22 

    Drafted: Ninth round, 2008 

    Minor League Level: Double-A 

    Quick Hit: The Puerto Rican-born Christian Vazquez has gotten better with his bat, including a nice 17/14 walk-to-strikeout ratio, but his main value is behind the plate. He has gained recognition for his rocket arm, which has allowed him to throw out 49 percent of attempted base-stealers this season.

Outfielder Keury De La Cruz

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    2013 Stats: 40 G, .256/.295/.423, 13 2B, 2 3B, 3 HR, 25 RBI, 5 SB, 18 R, 41 K 

    Age: 21  

    Drafted: Undrafted free agent, 2009 

    Minor League Level: High-A 

    Quick Hit: Keury De La Cruz had a lot of high expectations after he hit .308 with 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 116 games with Greenville and six games with Salem in 2012. So far, it’s been a quiet season for the left-handed hitter, although he has walloped 18 extra-base hits in 40 games.

First Baseman Travis Shaw

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    2013 Stats: 40 G, .248/.385/.393, 10 2B, 3 HR, 18 RBI, 22 R, 31 BB, 37 K 

    Age: 23  

    Drafted: Ninth round, 2011 

    Minor League Level: Double-A 

    Quick Hit: Earlier in his career, Travis Shaw was best known for being the son of former major league closer Jeff Shaw. He has since started making a name for himself as a hitter, as he gets on base at a prodigious clip and recently had a game where he slammed two doubles and a home run.

Third Baseman Michael Almanzar

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    2013 Stats: 39 G, .289/.351/.500, 11 2B, 7 HR, 28 RBI, 3 SB, 24 R, 14 BB, 31 K 

    Age: 22 

    Drafted: Undrafted free agent, 2007

    Minor League Level: Double-A 

    Quick Hit: Michael Almanzar may be in his sixth season in the Boston system, but he is still just 22 and has never played better. After hitting .300 last season, the right-handed hitter is already off to the best start of his career in 2013 while displaying more power.

Outfielder Brandon Jacobs

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    2013 Stats: 38 G, .193/.272/.357, 11 2B, 4 HR, 17 RBI, 5 SB, 17 R, 13 BB, 46 K 

    Age: 22  

    Drafted: 10th round, 2009 

    Minor League Level: High-A

    Quick Hit: Brandon Jacobs passed up a football scholarship to Auburn University to play minor league baseball for Boston. Although the big masher initially looked impressive, his numbers have slid as he has progressed through the system. He’s not only repeating High-A in 2013, but also putting up the worst numbers of his career.

Starting Pitcher Cody Kukuk

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    2013 Stats: 8 GS, 2-5, 5.10 ERA, 30 IP, 18 H, 17 ER, 26 BB, 25 K

    Age: 20  

    Drafted: Seventh round, 2011 

    Minor League Level: Single-A 

    Quick Hit: Just before he was to start his professional career, Cody Kukuk was arrested for an embarrassing DUI that put his pitching on hold. The southpaw has rebounded with up-and-down results in his first full season of action. Although batters are hitting just .180 against him, his high walk totals have consistently gotten him into trouble.

Starting Pitcher Pat Light

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    2013 Stats: 7 G (6 GS), 1-3, 8.28 ERA, 25 IP, 37 H, 23 ER, 13 BB, 24 K 

    Age: 22  

    Drafted: First round, 2012 

    Minor League Level: Single-A 

    Quick Hit: With a repertoire including a mid-90s fastball and a potentially plus slider, Pat Light was expected to do big things following his high draft position last year. Unfortunately, he has struggled mightily in 2013, as opposing hitters have knocked him around to the tune of a .336 batting average.

Starting Pitcher Frank Montas

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    2013 Stats: 8 GS, 1-4, 5.56 ERA, 34 IP, 35 H, 21 ER, 9 BB, 41 K 

    Age: 20 

    Drafted: Undrafted free agent, 2009 

    Minor League Level: Single-A 

    Quick Hit: The only thing the young right-handed Frank Montas has done consistently in 2013 is throw hard. His fastball is regularly clocked in the upper 90s while he has a slider that WEEI’s Alex Speier reported is rapidly becoming an out pitch for him. 

Infielder Brock Holt

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    2013 Stats: 34 G, .217/.290/.243, 3 2B, 0 HR, 12 RBI, 5 SB, 14 R, 13 BB, 26 K 

    Age: 24  

    Drafted: Ninth round, 2009 (Pittsburgh Pirates 

    Minor League Level: Triple-A  

    Quick Hit: Since coming over from Pittsburgh to Boston in the Joel Hanrahan trade, Brock Holt has not lived up to the potential he had shown in the past. The left-handed hitter has a .308 career batting average in the minors, but has looked lost at the plate with absolutely no power and little speed this season. 


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