November 22, 2011 at 6:45 PM
The Red Sox have been busy on the minor league front in recent days, including the signing of Will Inman, Chorye Spoone and Justin Thomas. Baseball America's Matt Edy first reported the signings of Inman and Thomas and MASN's Steve Melewski broke the news of Spoone's signing. Two key members of the Red Sox system in 2011 have also signed elsewhere, as Baseball America reports the Tommy Hottovy has signed a minor league deal with the Kansas City Royals and Drew Sutton has signed with the Atlanta Braves.
Inman, 24, was originally drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in the 3rd round of the 2005 amateur draft. The right-hander was traded to the San Diego Padres as part of a trade for reliever Scott Linebrink before the trading deadline in 2007. He started off his professional career with some impressive numbers and control, compiling an ERA under 2 in 2005 and 2006 on his way to a 16-2 record, mostly as a starter, and a greater than 5:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He has spent the last three seasons as a member of Triple-A Tuscon and Portland for the Padres, compiling an 8-19 record with a 5.65 ERA in 65 games (40 starts).
Spoone, 26, was originally drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the eighth round of the 2005 draft. He was a member of the Orioles 40-man roster before being designated for assignment this July, ultimately opting to stay with the organization. Spoone has primarily been a starter for most of his 7 season minor league career, compiling a 36-41 record with a 4.14 ERA. The right-hander split last season between Double-A Bowie and Triple-A Norfolk, going 7-6 with a 4.50 ERA in 31 games (19 starts).
Thomas, 27, was originally drafted in the fourth round of the 2005 draft by the Seattle Mariners. The 6'3" left-hander spent 5 seasons with the Mariners organization before being claimed on waivers by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2009. In 7 minor league seasons, Thomas has compiled 45-35 record with a 4.15 ERA. He began his career as a starter, but has pitched exclusively out of the bullpen since 2009. Last season as a member of Triple-A Indianapolis, Thomas was 8-2 with a 3.89 ERA and 3 saves in 63 relief appearances. He made his major league debut as a member of the Mariners in 2008, appearing in 8 games out of the bullpen with a 6.75 ERA. Thomas made it to the big leagues again in 2010 with the Pirates, compiling a 6.23 ERA in 12 relief appearances.
Hottovy, 30, was originally drafted by the Red Sox in the fourth round of the 2004 draft. The left-hander had an impressive 2011 campaign, dominating to the tune of a 1.93 ERA in 8 relief appearances for Double-A Portland, compiling a 2.75 ERA in 24 games with Triple-A Pawtucket, and making his major league debut. Hottovy was called up to the Red Sox in early June and tossed 4.0 innings, allowing 3 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks. Following the completion of the minor league season, he was named the Red Sox first Lou Gorman Award recipient, highlighting his dedication and perseverance on his way to the major leagues.
Sutton, 28, was originally drafted by the Houston Astros in the 15th round of the 2004 draft. 2011 was Sutton's first season with the Red Sox, a season split between Triple-A Pawtucket and Boston. He hit .295/.382/.476 with 5 home runs and 27 RBI in 45 games with the PawSox and .315/.362/.444 with 7 RBI as a valuable utility man with Boston.