May 11, 2012 at 12:23 PM
This week's minor league notes:
- Will Middlebrooks has been crushing the ball since his call-up to Boston on May 2nd. The 23-year-old third baseman is batting .323 with a .344 on-base percentage and an eye-popping .742 slugging percentage. He has seven extra-base hits in seven games. Middlebrooks discussed how far he has come as a hitter as well as his all-fields power on Alex Speier's Minor Details Podcast.
|Jose Iglesias |
- Back on May 1st, Red Sox Farm Director Ben Crockett said that he had seen a "huge improvement" this year from Jose Iglesias, even though Iglesias' OPS was only .486 at the time. Since that day, Iglesias has been hot, batting .406 with a .467 on-base percentage and a .519 slugging percentage, and he even won the SoxProspects.com Player of the Week award for the first week of May.
- Brendan McGair of the Woonsocket Call talked with Ryan Kalish about Kalish's rehab process and how he feels after the labrum surgery has sidelined him for the beginning of the season. Kalish said that he is "weeks, not months" away from playing again and also sounded optimistic about his health.
- Matt Barnes was promoted to Salem after not being challenged in Greenville. After his first start in Salem, it appears as though High-A batters will have a hard time as well with the 21-year-old right-hander. Barnes tossed 6.0 innings allowing 1 run on 4 hits while walking 1 and striking out 12. He won his fifth consecutive SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week award, which is a new record. Salem Pitching Coach Kevin Walker told Salem Broadcaster Evan Lepler that Barnes averaged 95 with his fastball and hit 98 several times over the course of the game. Also, Sam Dykstra, a contributor to MLB.com, caught up with Barnes after the start.
- Three Greenville pitchers combined on a no-hitter on Tuesday, the first in Drive history. Miguel Pena, Hunter Cervenka, and Tyler Lockwood combined to shut down the Rome Braves (ATL), with Pena leading the way with 6.0 perfect innings, striking out 7. After that performance, Barnes likely has a lot of work to do in his start tonight if he wants to win another Pitcher of the Week award.
- Daisuke Matsuzaka continued his rehab back from Tommy John surgery with 4.2 scoreless innings on Monday. Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal reported that Matsuzaka's velocity topped out at 91 and sat around 86-88 in the middle innings. Matsuzaka also said after the game that his elbow has good days and bad days, which is true for anyone coming off of a major injury. Matsuzaka can still make three more appearances with Pawtucket before his 30-day rehab stint is over, and will make his next start Saturday.
- Baseball America is reporting that the Red Sox have released right-hander John Maine. Maine was dealing with shoulder issues shortly after signing and never made an appearance this season.
|Jackie Bradley, Jr. |
- Evan Lepler noted in his blog on Tuesday morning that Jackie Bradley, Jr. and Matt Kemp both had an on-base percentage of .488, which was the highest in professional baseball. As of today, Bradley has taken the lead with a .493 OBP. The 2011 supplemental first-round pick out of South Carolina has been one of the bright spots for the system this season, and he has really turned it on in May. He is hitting .400 with a ridiculous .568 on-base percentage and .840 slugging percentage this month. After not hitting a home run in April, he has already hit three in May.
- SoxProspects Director of Scouting Chris Mellen talked Red Sox prospects with the guys at Over the Monster for their podcast. They talk about Middlebrooks, Ryan Lavarnway, Sean Coyle, and Anthony Ranaudo among others. It is a must-listen.
- Speaking of Ranaudo, based on Twitter conversations, it appears as though he is close to joining the rotation in Portland. He has been in Extended Spring Training recovering from a groin strain.
- Life in the minor leagues is not glorious. Low wages and long road trips, while also learning to live on you own can be tough for young players. Willie T. Smith III of the Greenville News takes a look at how some of the young Drive players are making ends meet, and what the Red Sox organization is doing to help them.