Below is an analysis of the prospects in the farm system of the Boston Red Sox. Scouting reports are compiled with information provided by industry sources as well as from our own (both Eric Longenhagen’s and Kiley McDaniel’s) observations. For more information on the 20-80 scouting scale by which all of our prospect content is governed you can click here. For further explanation of the merits and drawbacks of Future Value, read this.
All of the numbered prospects here also appear on The Board, a new feature at the site that offers sortable scouting information for every organization. That can be found here.
Editor’s Note: Jonathan Arauz was added to this list following his selection by Boston in the Rule 5 Draft.
Brusdar Graterol was removed from this list following the restructuring of the Betts trade that would have sent him to Boston from the Twins. He will appear on the forthcoming Dodgers list.
Other Prospects of Note
Grouped by type and listed in order of preference within each category.
Every team needs a ton of pitching depth to get through a season, and these guys all profile as either up and down spot starter types or bullpen pieces who have some holes. Eric really likes how Mosqueda’s stuff works (the fastball has big life) but he doesn’t repeat his delivery. Shawaryn and Poyner are older relievers who’ll both get righties out, Shawaryn because of his slot and slider, Poyner because of the changeup. Reyes, Diaz, and Raudes are all emergency starter types.
These are guys with big raw power who we’re not currently optimistic will hit enough to clear the offensive bar at their likely eventual positions. They need to stay on the radar because of the power, though, just in case. Martinez and Scherff are the pitcher versions of this. They have premium arm strength — Martinez is 94-97 touching 99, Scherff is 92-96 with a good changeup — but relief-only projections, and their fastballs don’t play like you’d expect given the velo.
Any of the guys in this group could have justifiably been included in the main portion of the list. Rafaela has contact skills and can play all over the field. He’s 17, but is only 5-foot-8 and has very little room on the frame. Belen is the opposite. He’s a broad-shouldered power projection bat at 6-foot-4, with average raw, and a plus arm, another right field look. Cubillan was hurt for much of 2019. He’s 21 and plays a good short and has contact skills, but very little power. He might be where Chatham is on the list next year. Gonzalez is 6-foot-3 and has already touched 95 at age 17. Diaz was a shortstop but moved to center field; he’s another wiry frame to keep an eye on in case he grows into impact power. Garcia has similar tools but a slighter build.
All of these guys create carry on their fastball because of some combination of arm slot and spin direction. Bell, age 21 (he’s one of Jay Bell’s kids), sits 91-94, and flashes a 55 curveball. Munoz is 19, from Nicaragua, and had a 62-to-5 strikeout to walk ratio in the DSL last year. He sits 86-88 and touches 90, so we’re watching the velo for now. Nail struck out 14.5 per 9 at Lowell and Greenville even though he only sits 89-92, though he’s 24. Bazardo and Padron-Artilles are both a little old for their level, too. Bazardo was 24 and split his year between the Hi-A and Double-A bullpen, touching 94 with a 55 curveball. Padron-Artilles was born in Cuba and drafted late out of Miami Dade College last year. He’s also up to 94 but from a very deceptive, overhand slot.
Jhonny Pereda, C
Pereda was acquired in late March to complete a January trade for fringe 25-man reliever Travis Lakins (who was atop the “Certain Depth” group in the Others of Note section). He’s a 23-year-old viable defensive catcher with a good approach, and was discussed by some teams as a Rule 5 possibility in 2018 when he was coming off a career year — .272/.347/.363, 10% BB%, 14% K% — at Hi-A. He profiles as a third catcher. Boston’s motley crew, upper-level catching situation — Kevin Plawecki and Christian Vasquez on the 40-man, five non-roster invitees, including recently-acquired Connor Wong and several older guys — gets a little younger.
If you look past the waves cresting near the beach, the ones everyone is availing themselves of right now, and instead gaze out toward the sandbar, you will see them slowly growing, the arches of sea rolling and building toward shore that will soon become the cresting waves everyone can enjoy. That is where this system is right now, after the team successfully traded most of the best guys away in pursuit of a title.
Is the system good? No. Craig Edwards’ valuation of the FV tiers is friendlier to top-heavy systems rather than deep ones, and the Red Sox have one top 100 guy in Casas. But it is kind of exciting. Of the 33 names on the main portion of the list, 19 are too young to drink. The 35+ FV tier and honorable mentions are full of projectable young hitters, and just the sheer volume of them means Boston is likely to yield a few good ones even if, individually, they’re all long-shots by virtue of their age and proximity. Development is not linear; Antoni Flores’ last 12 months should serve as a reminder of that fact. With Eddie Romero and Chris Becerra both around, this will likely remain one of the top international programs, and thus, there will be more waves building near the horizon.
Chief Baseball Officer (rolls eyes) Chaim Bloom was part of a prospect depth-creating machine in Tampa Bay because the club was great at understanding 40-man timelines, and has a pro department that crushed a bunch of their trades. He can’t take the Rays’ pro department with him, and we don’t know much about Boston’s because they’ve been buyers for so long. It’s harrowing to think that Bloom might consider a Mookie Betts trade based on the opinions of a collection of people he barely knows.