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SoxProspects News

March 9, 2015 at 12:00 PM

Fort Report: Spring games begin

Here are this week's minor league notes:
  • SoxProspects.com released all-new scouting reports for prospects 21-40 after unveiling the new format for the top 20 prospects in February. The reports were completely overhauled to feature in-depth analysis in physical description, tools, career notes and more.
  • The Red Sox are still awaiting the results of a drug test before they can officially announce the signing of Yoan Moncada, according to Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston.
  • Right-handed pitcher Matt Barnes (pictured,right),
    currently ranked seventh on the SoxProspects.com rankings, could turn out to be a weapon out of the bullpen, according to Michael Silverman of The Boston Herald. Red Sox manager John Farrell told Silverman that with Barnes' stuff, which includes a fastball that touched 97 mph and a tight breaking ball, he could be in the running for one of the two bullpen spots up for grabs coming out of Spring Training.
  • Catcher Blake Swihart, SoxProspects.com's top-ranked prospect, showed off his power in Saturday's split-squad win over Baltimore in Sarasota. Jeff Pini of Boston.com talked about the 22-year-old's hitting prowess.
  • Sean McAdam of Comcast Sportsnet New England wrote in depth about SoxProspects.com fifth-ranked prospect Eduardo Rodriguez. The big lefty hurled three perfect innings with three strikeouts against his former organization, Baltimore, in Saturday's split-squad game.
  • Second-ranked SoxProspects.com prospect Henry Owens could be in the rotation at the start of next season, predicts Jen McCaffrey of Masslive.com. She spoke with Owens about his expectations for the season and with John Farrell about his thoughts on the 6-foot-6 left-hander.
  • Ninth-ranked prospect on SoxProspects.com Garin Cecchini told John Tomase of WEEI.com that an allergic reaction to a prescription medicine greatly affected his play last season. Cecchini said that a reaction to the antibiotic bactrim made eating and drinking extremely difficult and he lost 10 pounds as a result. He has since bulked up to 225 lbs.
  • Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal profiled Rhode Island native and Red Sox vice president of baseball administration, Raquel Ferreira. Several Red Sox players, including Hanley Ramirez, Mookie Betts and Bryce Brentz, all praised her ability to help "countless" players who have made their way through the farm system. She is just the third woman ever to hold a vice president position in a baseball operations department in the MLB.
  • Infielder Sean Coyle, currently the 13th-ranked prospect on SoxProspects.com, learned to hit from the teachings of a Red Sox legend, according to Tomase. According to the article, Coyle said that Ted Williams' book, "The Science of Hitting", was a source of inspiration and information on how to become a better hitter.
  • Edes writes for ESPN Boston that 30-year-old knuckleballer Steven Wright (pictured, right)
    could play a key role for the Red Sox this season. Edes notes that despite Wright's age, many other famous knuckleball pitchers like Tim Wakefield, R.A. Dickey, Charlie Hough and Phil Niekro did not start hitting their stride until around age 30.
  • Heath Hembree, the right-handed reliever acquired from the Giants with Edwin Escobar in the Jake Peavy trade last year, spoke with Tim Britton of the Providence Journal about how tearing his ACL in high school actually ended up helping his pitching career. Hembree suffered the injury as the starting quarterback for the Broome High School football team in Spartanburg, S.C.
  • Worcester native Bryan LaHair, considered a "post-prospect" by SoxProspects.com, spoke with Edes about the possibility of playing for his hometown team. The 32-year-old 1B/OF talked about the circuitous route he took back home by way of Seattle, Chicago, Cleveland and Japan.
  • He's not technically a prospect anymore, but don't count out Jackie Bradley Jr. just yet, writes MacPherson. A hot spring training with his bat could mean Bradley forces his way back onto the big league roster.
  • Matt Collins of Over The Monster takes a look at some of the "forgotten men" of the Red Sox 40-man roster.
  • With the recent sale of the Pawtucket Red Sox - and plans to move the team to Providence - Brendan McGair of the PawSox Blog took a look at some of the top Boston prospects to play at McCoy Stadium.
  • The Red Sox agreed to terms with 21 players on the major league roster who are not yet eligible for arbitration on one-year contracts, according to a team release. Those players include pitchers Matt Barnes, Edwin Escobar, Heath Hembree, Joe Kelly, Tommy Layne, Eduardo Rodriguez, Robbie Ross Jr., Zeke Spruill, Anthony Varvaro, Brandon Workman, and Steven Wright; catchers Blake Swihart and Christian Vazquez; infielders Xander Bogaerts, Garin Cecchini, Sean Coyle, Brock Holt, and Travis Shaw; and outfielders Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr., and Bryce Brentz. The team added that all players on the Red Sox major league roster are under contract for the 2015 season.
  • The Red Sox released their spring training schedule for their minor league affiliates. Note that this is the schedule for the Triple-A and Double-A clubs. The A-Ball and Rookie-Ball squads will play the same schedule, but will simply be away against the same opponent on the days that the Triple-A and Double-A clubs are home, and vice-versa.
    DATE                        OPPONENT                      AFFILIATION    SITE              TIME
    Wed. March 18         vs Norfolk Tides                     Orioles              Ft. Myers         1:00 pm 
    Thur. March 19         @ Rochester Red Wings        Twins                Lee County      1:00 pm 
    Fri. March 20            vs Norfolk Tides                     Orioles              Ft. Myers         1:00 pm 
    Sat. March 21            @Durham Bulls                     Rays                  Port Charlotte  1:00 pm 
    Sun. March 22           CAMP DAY 
    Mon. March 23          vs Durham Bulls                    Rays                  Ft. Myers         1:00 pm 
    Tues. March 24         @ Rochester Red Wings        Twins                Lee County      1:00 pm 
    Wed. March 25         @ Norfolk Tides                    Orioles              Sarasota            1:00 pm 
    Thur. March 26          vs Rochester Red Wings       Twins                Ft. Myers          1:00 pm 
    Fri. March 27             vs Norfolk Tides                    Orioles              Ft. Myers         1:00 pm 
    Sat. March 28            @Durham Bulls                      Rays                 Port Charlotte   1:00 pm 
    Sun. March 29           CAMP DAY 
    Mon. March 30          @Durham Bulls                     Rays                  Port Charlotte   1:00 pm 
    Tues. March 31          vs Rochester Red Wings       Twins                 Ft. Myers          1:00 pm 
    Wed. April 1              @Norfolk Tides                     Orioles              Sarasota             1:00 pm 
    Thur. April 2              vs Durham Bulls                    Rays                  Ft. Myers           1:00 pm 
    Fri. April 3                @ Rochester Red Wings        Twins                Lee County       1:00 pm 
    Sat. April 4                vs Rochester Red Wings        Twins                Ft. Myers          1:00 pm

  • As the players in major league camp build up their workloads, the Red Sox followed their typical practice of using players from minor league camp to take innings at the end of of major league games. The following players got the call last week including in the Boston College and Northeastern games: Forrestt Allday, Carlos Asuaje, David Chester, Reed Gragnani, Kevin Heller, Marco Hernandez, Matty Johnson, Manuel Margot, Mike Miller, Henry Ramos, Wendell Rijo, Cole Sturgeon, Aneury Tavarez, Blake Tekotte, Sam Travis, Shannon Wilkerson, Jantzen Witte.
Photo Credit: Matt Barnes and Steven Wright by Kelly O'Connor