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SoxProspects News

September 20, 2011 at 1:22 PM

Why Kyle Weiland was best internal option

Heading into the 2011 season, I lauded the Red Sox minor league system for its depth. But as the season has progressed, it became apparent there was an absolute dearth of depth of starting pitching at the upper levels of the minor leagues.

Over the past few months, the club has been presented with several opportunities for a young starting pitcher to take the reins, help the club in the race for the wild card spot, and potentially earn a spot in Boston’s rotation for 2012. The best -- and only -- option the front office has been able to put on the mound is former third-round pick Kyle Weiland. In 6 major league appearances, the 25-year-old right-hander is 0-3 with a 7.99 ERA.

This isn’t a referendum on Weiland or his future, as he’s posted a 3.51 ERA at four levels of the system since 2008, and has shown the potential to have three major league pitches with continued refinement. Over time, he could certainly develop into a very good late-inning reliever and perhaps even a decent spot starter at the major league level. But the fact that he’s been the only go-to option from the minor leagues for the big club down the stretch speaks to the lack of depth of starting pitching at the upper levels of the system.

Check out the rest of the column on ESPN Boston.