September 20, 2012 at 9:51 PM
It's difficult to believe that it has been nine years since Mike Andrews started SoxProspects.com on September 20, 2003. That October, the site looked something like this. Although the Red Sox farm system had some good future MLB talent in players like Hanley Ramirez, Kevin Youkilis, "John" Lester, Jorge De La Rosa, David Murphy, and Kelly Shoppach, and although Mike had them mostly (hello Chad Spann) pegged correctly as the system's top prospects, both the system and the website have come a long way since then. The Red Sox won two championships after that date, while SoxProspects.com has grown to an incorporated entity receiving more than 15-million page hits per year and a staff of 23.
First of all, thank you to all of you for continuing to read the site - you're why we do this. Additionally, we want to thank all of the folks who've worked for nothing to make this site what it is. In honor of the site's birthday, here's a look back at big dates in our history:
September 20, 2003: Mike Andrews launches SoxProspects.com. De La Rosa is ranked atop the system. The site also features a Forum in which readers can discuss the Sox farm system. Memorable early topics include the Portland Sea Dogs releasing their 2003 card set.
June 2005: The SoxProspects.com News Page launches. The first post is an interview with a Greenville Bombers season ticket holder. Early highlights on the News Page include Andrews filing the site's first bylined report on June 22, covering the Lowell Spinners' season opener.
August 2006: SoxProspects.com adds a Wiki.
February 2007: Although the News Page had featured first-hand reporting already, player interviews become a regular feature, beginning with this Q&A with Brandon Moss.
April 2008: Largely the work of Mike Reynolds, the website adds a sortable statistics database. This database now contains statistics for every player in the system dating back to 2007 at all levels, as well as updated standings and schedules.
January 2010: The website incorporates, forming SoxProspects, LLC.
March 2010: SoxProspects.com enters into a partnership with ESPNBoston.com to provide original content for ESPNBoston's Red Sox blog.