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SoxProspects News

December 12, 2013 at 9:32 AM

Michael Almanzar selected in Rule 5 draft

The Baltimore Orioles have selected infielder Michael Almanzar from the Red Sox in Thursday morning's Rule 5 draft. In the minor league phase of the draft, the Red Sox chose utility man Jonathan Roof from the Philadelphia Phillies

Almanzar, 23, spent the entire 2013 campaign with Double-A Portland. He got off to a fast start, hitting .319/.367/.560 in April and earning recognition as an Eastern League All-Star. However, he tailed off in the second half and finished with a .268/.328/.432 line. Despite the slow finish, a second straight solid season helped to restore some of his prospect status. Originally signed to a $1.5 million bonus in 2007 out of the Dominican Republic, Almanzar struggled for years with both on-field difficulties and attitude issues.

Originally projected as a third baseman due to his strong throwing arm, Almanzar's defense at the position has not developed, and he has spent increasing time at first base and designated hitter in the last three years. With 48 extra-base hits in each of the last two seasons, his power has become his most valuable asset.

Roof was originally drafted by the Red Sox in the 39th round of the 2007 draft out of St. Mary's High School in Paducah, KY, but instead attended Michigan State University. After earning recognition as a member of the 2010 All-Big Ten team, he was taken in the eighth round by the Rangers in 2010 . He joins his fifth organization, having previously been a member of the Texas, San Diego, Detroit, and Philadelphia organizations, reaching Triple-A Tucson in 2012. Roof was signed to a minor league deal by the Detroit Tigers before the 2013 season and was dealt to the Phillies before appearing in a regular season game. He split the year between Low A Lakewood and High A Clearwater, hitting .254/.321/.381 while playing both middle infield positions.

Photo Credit: Michael Almanzar by Kelly O'Connor