June 25, 2014 at 7:30 AM
The top two players in the SoxProspects.com rankings will be appearing in the All-Star Futures Game on Sunday, July 13 at Target Field in Minnesota. Second baseman-slash-center fielder Mookie Betts (pictured) and left-hander Henry Owens will appear on the U.S. Team, where they will take on former Red Sox prospect Frank Montas and the World team. Major League Baseball listed Betts as an infielder on the roster, so it is likely that he will appear at second base in the game.
Since his promotion to Pawtucket on June 3, Betts has hit .321/.402/.457, with 11 walks, 13 strikeouts, and six steals in eight chances. He has appeared in five games at second base and 14 as a center fielder for the PawSox, and the initial reports have been positive about his work in the outfield. Overall, the 21-year-old is hitting .346/.432/.525 in 345 plate appearances between Portland and Pawtucket this season, proving that last year's breakout campaign was not an aberration.
He will be joined by Owens, his former Portland teammate who has been one of the best pitchers in the minors over the last month. In his last five starts, Owens has thrown 35 2/3 innings, allowing only one run on 20 hits, walking eight and striking out 32. In total, the 21-year-old has a 1.99 ERA in 86 innings this year, walking 35 and striking out 89. After having some control issues earlier in the season, Owens has put those behind him, and he looks ready to join Betts in Pawtucket.
Both players were acquired in the 2011 draft, which also saw the Red Sox draft Blake Swihart, Matt Barnes, Jackie Bradley, Jr., and Travis Shaw. While Bradley has struggled in the majors this season, this draft is still shaping up to be the best draft the Red Sox have had since 2005.
Photo Credit: Mookie Betts by Kelly O'Connor