SoxProspects News

December 30, 2015 at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Javier Guerra


This week, we recap the players ranked 7, 6, and 5 in the SoxProspects.com season-end Top 40. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#6 Javier Guerra, SS
2015 Team: Greenville Drive
Final Stats: 477 PA, .279/.329/.449, 15 HR, 30 BB, 112 K
2015 Peak Ranking: 6 (October)
Season in Review: 2014
Links
Fiorino: The Write-Up, March 20
Dunne: System Restart, Middle Infielders
Hatfield: Notes from the Field, May 6
Guerra named South Atlantic League All-Star
SoxProspects.com Player of the Week (July 6-12)
Cundall: Scouting Scratch, September 3
2015 SoxProspects.com All-Stars
Red Sox name Guerra Defensive Player of the Year
SoxProspects.com 2015 season-end award winners

Season in Review: Guerra entered the year with some scouting buzz due to his elite defensive potential, but he was still flying under the radar to some degree, beginning the season at 16th in the SoxProspects.com rankings. However, he quickly put himself on the map after a hot start to the season, hitting .321/.365/.526 over his first 86 plate appearances, despite striking out in over 30 percent of those. He cooled off over his next 31 games, batting .229/.294/.431, with his strikeout rate remaining around 30 percent while his batting average on balls in play decreased significantly, a sign that he was getting a bit lucky with balls falling in early in the season.
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December 28, 2015 at 7:00 PM

Fall/Winter League Roundup: Playoffs begin in Dominican Republic


This week's roundup covers play from the period of December 21-27. For the full list of Red Sox prospects participating in offseason action, check out our Fall and Winter Leagues page, which will be updated continuously through the end of the offseason.

Dominican Professional Baseball League

The regular season ended on the 21st, with Este, Oriente, Escogido, and Licey all making the playoffs. Every Red Sox prospect was on one of these four teams, so there will be names to follow throughout the playoffs. The first games of the postseason took place yesterday, with Este defeating Oriente, and Escogido beating Licey. Marco Hernandez (pictured) went 1 for 3 for Licey.
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at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Michael Kopech


This week, we recap the players ranked 7, 6, and 5 in the SoxProspects.com season-end Top 40. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

2015 Teams: Greenville Drive
Final Stats: 65 IP, 2.63 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 70 K, 27 BB
2015 Peak Ranking: 5 (Current)
Season in Review: 2014
Links

Season in Review: Kopech was selected with the 33rd overall pick in the 2014 draft, but threw just 13 innings in the Gulf Coast League in his professional debut, giving only a small indication of what might be expected from the Texan right-hander. In 2015, the soon-to-be 19-year-old broke camp with the Greenville Drive, three years younger than the average pitcher in the South Atlantic League. He had a short adjustment period, failing to make it through four innings in three of his first five starts, allowing eight runs in 18 2/3 innings, walking seven and allowing 14 hits although he did strike out 17 hitters. But from that point forward Kopech really turned it on. In what would be his final 11 appearances, he allowed only 11 earned runs over 46 1/3 innings for a 2.14 ERA. Consistency was key for him over that stretch, giving up one earned run or less in eight of those 11 appearances while averaging over a strikeout an inning, and his still-high 20 walks in that span ballooned due to the nine free passes he gave up over nine innings in his final two starts, perhaps signaling fatigue.
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December 25, 2015 at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Brian Johnson


This week, we recap the next three players in the season-end Top 40, going from 10 to 8. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#8 Brian Johnson, LHP
2015 Team: Pawtucket Red Sox, Boston Red Sox
Final Stats: 96 IP, 2.53 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, 90 K, 32 BB (minors only)
Peak Ranking: 4 (August)
Season in Review: 2014 | 2013 | 2012
Links:

2015 Season in Review: Brian Johnson's ascent through the Red Sox system reached its apex when the former first-round pick made his major league debut on July 21. While it was a tremendous accomplishment for the left-hander, one that was well earned following a tremendous start to the year, it also represented a turning point in his year. After making that debut following a long layoff, Johnson made only two more starts before being shut down for the season with an elbow injury.
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December 23, 2015 at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Sam Travis


This week, we recap the next three players in the season-end Top 40, going from 10 to 8. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#9 Sam Travis, 1B
2015 Teams: Salem Red Sox, Portland Sea Dogs
Final Stats: 559 PA, .307/.381/.452, 9 HR, 59 BB, 77 K
2015 Peak Ranking: 7 (Current)
Season In Review: 2014
Links
Dunne: System Restart, Corner Infielders
2015 SoxProspects Pre-Season All-Stars
Player of the Week, April 27-May 3
Player of the Week, June 1-June 8
Travis to represent Salem as Carolina League All-Star
Report: Sam Travis promoted to Portland
June Player of the Month
Travis highlights six announced for Arizona Fall League
2015 SoxProspects.com All-Stars
Travis, Moncada highlight Red Sox minor league awards

Season In Review: Travis did not miss a beat in his second professional season, passing just about every challenge thrown at him in 2015. After raking in Lowell and Greenville in 2014 just after being drafted, Travis posted very impressive offensive numbers again in 2015 over two levels. He earned the Red Sox Minor League Offensive Player of the Year award from the organization, as well as two SoxProspects.com Player of the Week honors and the SoxProspects.com Player of the Month award for June. In that month for Salem, Travis posted a .406/.474/.638 slash line with three home runs and five doubles before being called up to Portland on June 24. He had nine multi-hit games in June, including a 4-for-4 day for Salem on June 12. He was also named to the Carolina League All-Star Game, where he collected a pair of hits.
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December 21, 2015 at 10:49 PM

Podcast Ep. 89: Alex Speier on Baseball America's Red Sox Top 10 Prospects


It's ranking season, and that gave us an excuse to get our friend Alex Speier of the Boston Globe and Baseball America to discuss his recently released list of the top 10 Red Sox prospects! We discuss the organization's first-class top 10 and potentially worrisome lack of depth after the top 7, whether the Red Sox gave up too much in the Craig Kimbrel deal, and much more!

And as always, thanks to The Ludlow Thieves for our music! Get their new EP Sing Me Back, released Dec. 18, on iTunes!

Click through for links and in-site player!
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at 12:30 PM

Fall/Winter League Roundup: Brentz sees first action


This week's roundup covers play from the period of December 14-December 20. For the full list of Red Sox prospects participating in offseason action, check out our Fall and Winter Leagues page, which will be updated continuously through the end of the offseason.

Dominican Professional Baseball League

Marco Hernandez started the week hot, going 2 for 3 with two doubles and a run scored on Tuesday, but proceeded to go 0 for his next 10 to close out the week. Aneury Tavarez was 2 for 8 with an RBI in three games this week.

Roman Mendez was the only Red Sox pitcher to appear in the Dominican League last week. He appeared in two contests, tossing an inning of relief, allowing a run on two hits and two walks. He picked up the loss in Wednesday's contest against Licey.
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at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Deven Marrero


This week, we recap the next three players in the season-end Top 40, going from 10 to 8. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#10: Deven Marrero, SS
2015 Teams: Pawtucket Red Sox, Boston Red Sox
Final Stats: 419 PA, .256/.316/.344, 6 HR, 33 BB, 87 K (minors); 56 PA, .226/.268/.283, 1 HR, 3 BB, 19 K (majors)
2015 Peak Ranking: 8 (Current)
Season in Review: 2014 | 2013 | 2012
Links

Season In Review: Marrero has always been lauded for his defensive talents at shortstop, and that was enough to get him into 25 games for the major league club, making his debut in the bigs in his fourth year in the Red Sox system. He was used as a defensive replacement 13 times over two stints, one due to Dustin Pedroia’s injury in late June and early July and the other when the rosters expanded in September. With Xander Bogaerts playing his best shortstop of his career, Boston primarily used Marrero at third base for his time with the big league club. Marrero had never played more than three games at third base before this season, but handled his time on the hot corner well—he committed just one error in 22 chances at third and also played errorless defense at second for 20 innings.
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December 18, 2015 at 8:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Luis Alexander Basabe and Michael Chavis


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 16 to 11. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

2015 Team: Lowell Spinners
Final Stats: 256 PA, .243/.340/.401, 7 HR, 32 BB, 67 K
2015 Peak Ranking: 10 (Current)
Links

Season In Review: An intriguing raw outfield talent, 19-year-old Basabe was an All-Star in his first season with the Lowell Spinners. Basabe - not to be confused with his twin brother Luis Alejandro, who played shortstop and second base for the GCL Red Sox - signed as an international free agent with the Red Sox out of Venezuela at the age of 16. Flashing a combination of power, speed and arm strength in the field, it is easy to see why Basabe has risen through the ranks of Red Sox prospects. 
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December 16, 2015 at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Trey Ball and Logan Allen


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 16 to 11. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#14 Trey Ball, LHP
2015 Teams: Salem Red Sox
Final Stats: 129 1/3 IP, 4.73 ERA, 1.46 WHIP, 77 K, 60 BB
2015 Peak Ranking: 11 (current)
Season in Review: 2014 | 2013
Links

Season in Review: A season after the 2013 first-round pick split his season between a brutal, 6.52-ERA first half and a redeeming, 2.70 ERA second half, Ball struggled with inconsistency in 2015. After giving up 10 hits and six runs during his debut with Salem, he rebounded to throw six no-hit innings in his second start of the campaign. Those two starts were indicative of how his season would progress. He surrendered 16 earned runs over his next 20 innings, then did not allow a run in three starts from June 4 through June 14, spanning 15 2/3 innings. He allowed just six hits over that stretch. Ball finished on a sour note, giving up 42 runs over his final 66 2/3 innings.
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December 15, 2015 at 5:30 PM

Red Sox sign six players to minor league contracts


The Red Sox announced today that they signed six players to minor league contracts with invitations to spring training, including four players who saw varying degrees of playing time in the majors in 2015. Right-handers William Cuevas (pictured), Sean O'Sullivan, and Anthony Varvaro will all get a chance to contribute in Pawtucket this season, while third baseman Chris Dominguez, center fielder Ryan LaMarre, and catcher Ali Solis will offer depth for the lineup. 

Cuevas and Varvaro are familiar faces, with Cuevas spending his entire career with the Red Sox after debuting in 2009, and Varvaro spending the first month of last season in Boston's bullpen before undergoing surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in his pitching arm. 
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December 14, 2015 at 5:35 PM

Fall/Winter League Roundup: Vazquez swinging it well in Puerto Rican League


This week's roundup covers play from the period of December 7-December 13. For the full list of Red Sox prospects participating in offseason action, check out our Fall and Winter Leagues page, which will be updated continuously through the end of the offseason.

Dominican Professional Baseball League

Marco Hernandez (pictured) went 5 for 21 with a double, two runs, and two RBI this past week at shortstop for Licey. Aneury Tavarez followed up a nice week by going 3 for 11 with a double.

Roman Mendez was the only Red Sox pitcher to appear in the Dominican League last week. He made two appearances and tossed 2 1/3 scoreless frames, allowing two hits along the way.
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at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Nick Longhi and Wendell Rijo


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 16 to 11. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#16 Nick Longhi, 1B/OF
2015 Team: Greenville Drive
Final stats: .281/.338/.403, 7 HR, 34 BB, 88 K 2015
Peak Ranking: 13 (Current)
Season in Review: 2014 | 2013
Links:
Huegel: With injury behind him, Longhi honing selective approach this spring
Dunne: System Restart, Outfielders
Hatfield: Notes From the Field, May 6
Podcast Episode 83: Longhi Interview
Cundall: Scouting Scratch, September 3

Season in Review: Longhi often seemed overshadowed on a star-studded Greenville roster, but the Springfield, Massachusetts-born prospect quietly turned in a solid 2015 season. Coming off a torn UCL in his thumb that ended his 2014 season after only 30 games, Longhi quickly put to rest any worries about potential rust or lingering effects. He opened the season with a 10-game hitting streak, going 16 for his first 41 at-bats with four doubles and two home runs. While he did not keep that torrid pace throughout the summer, Longhi finished the year with 124 hits and 27 doubles, good for fifth in the farm system in both categories. This all came while  being 19 for most of the season, making him one of the younger members of the South Atlantic League. He was the third-youngest position player to appear for the Drive in 2015, older than only Rafael Devers and Javier Guerra, and only 23 of Longhi’s 488 plate appearances were against younger pitchers.
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December 11, 2015 at 8:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season In Review: Mauricio Dubon and Marco Hernandez


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 22 to 17. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.


#18 Mauricio Dubon, SS/2B
2015 Teams: Greenville Drive, Salem Red Sox
Final Stats: 531 PA, .288/.349/.376, 5 HR, 41 BB, 72 K
2015 Peak Ranking: 15 (Current)
Season In Review: 2014
Links:

Season in Review: Dubon continued to do in 2015 what he’s done since being drafted in the 26th round of the 2013 draft: make contact. The 21-year-old righty got off to a hot start in Greenville, collecting a hit in 14 of his first 16 games. Dubon had a .301/.354/.428 slash line with the Drive in 58 games and had an impressive 22 multi-hit games. He also recorded 19 of his 29 extra-base hits  with Greenville. While he didn’t totally fall off after his promotion,  facing more advanced pitching with Salem was a definite challenge. Dubon hit .274 in High-A, but his power numbers declined steeply, with just one homer and no triples in 269 plate appearances. By the end of the season, Dubon began to show signs of adjustment. He entered August hitting only .231 at High-A and finished at a .323 pace in August and September. He also showcased his speed for the first time in 2015, racking up 30 steals on the year. That tally ranked fourth in the Red Sox system behind only Yoan Moncada, Manuel Margot and Quintin Berry. -Eric Gendron
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December 10, 2015 at 2:11 PM

Garin Cecchini traded to Brewers for cash considerations


The Red Sox announced today a deal that sends utilityman Garin Cecchini to the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for undisclosed cash considerations. Cecchini had been designated for assignment last week in order to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for free agent pitcher David Price

Cecchini, 24, was a highly touted prospect in recent years but saw his star fade due to struggles at the Triple-A level. He labored to a .213/.286/.296 line with Pawtucket in 2015, finding himself the only healthy position player on the 40-man roster not to receive a recall when rosters expanded in September. His drop-off at the plate was magnified by a lack of progress in the field. Exclusively a third baseman during his first three years in the organization, he was slow to take to the position and started seeing time in the outfield in 2014. In 2015, he appeared at third base in only 19 of his PawSox games, instead seeing the majority of his playing time at left field and first base.
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at 11:33 AM

Sox nab righties Polanco, Leclerc in Triple-A phase of Rule 5 draft


The Red Sox were not active in the major league portion of the 2015 draft, but used the Triple-A phase to supplement their minor league pitching depth. Right-handed pitchers Jhonny Polanco (pictured) and Angelo Leclerc were taken from the St. Louis Cardinals and Texas Rangers organizations, respectively. The Chicago Cubs tabbed Red Sox outfielder Jesus Loya in the Triple-A portion of the draft. 

Boston was not eligible to make a selection in the major league portion because it did not have a free spot on its 40-man roster. For the first time since 2008, the Red Sox did not have one of their own players selected by another team. Players taken in the major league portion of the draft must remain on the 25-man roster of the drafting team all season or be offered back to their original team.
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December 9, 2015 at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Teddy Stankiewicz and Pat Light


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 22 to 17. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here

2015 Teams: Salem Red Sox
Final Stats: 141 1/3 IP, 4.01 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 77 K, 32 BB
2015 Peak Ranking: 17 (Current)
Season In Review: 2014 | 2013
Links

Season in Review: Stankiewicz has not posted standout numbers on paper, but he continues to show the potential to be a workhorse pitcher. The 6-foot-4 Texan topped the 140 innings mark for the second season in a row and ranked second among all pitchers in the Red Sox system in innings pitched. He also ranked fourth in the Carolina League in innings pitched. Stankiewicz showed flashes of brilliance last season with eight innings of shutout ball on May 25 then seven scoreless frames on July 3 as well as in his season finale on Sept. 6.
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December 7, 2015 at 9:59 PM

Sam Travis named to AFL Top Prospects Team


First baseman Sam Travis capped a solid showing in this year's Arizona Fall League with a selection to the circuit's Top Prospects Team. The league's managers and coaches voted for the 22 honorees, basing their votes on a combination of performance and major league projectability.

Travis hit .344/.394/.505 in 23 games for the Scottsdale Scorpions, hitting 10 doubles, a triple, and a home run over his 93 at-bats. He and Mets first baseman Dominic Smith were the two first basemen selected. Notably, the recently traded Carlos Asuaje was one of the two honorees at second base.
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at 4:54 PM

Red Sox trade Miley, Aro to Seattle for Carson Smith, Roenis Elias


The Red Sox made their first trade of the 2015 Winter Meetings on Monday, sending left-hander Wade Miley and right-hander Jonathan Aro (pictured) to Seattle in exchange for right-handed reliever Carson Smith and left-handed starter Roenis Elias. Smith is expected to slot into a setup role in front of Craig Kimbrel, along with Koji Uehara, while Elias may either compete for the fifth spot in the rotation or be used against left-handers out of the bullpen.

Here at SoxProspects, we reviewed Aro's 2015 season and provided a scouting report in last Friday's Top 40 Season in Review entry, with SoxProspects Director of Scouting Ian Cundall summing him up with the following:
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at 2:30 PM

Fall/Winter League Roundup: Liga Paralela playoffs set to begin


This week's roundup covers play from the period of November 30-December 6. For the full list of Red Sox prospects participating in offseason action, check out our Fall and Winter Leagues page, which will be updated continuously through the end of the offseason.

Dominican Professional Baseball League

Playing both shortstop and second base this week, Marco Hernandez (pictured) went 5 for 13 with two doubles, a walk, and a run scored as he rebounded from an 0 for 12 performance last week. Appearing in his first games in over a month, Aneury Tavarez went 4 for 7 with a double, walk, and three stolen bases. Free agent Carlos Peguero went 2 for 12 with three walks and two strikeouts, while Rafael Devers did not see any playing time for the third week in a row. 
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at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Luis Ysla and Williams Jerez


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 22 to 17. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#22 Luis Ysla, LHP
2015 Teams: San Jose Giants (SFG), Salem Red Sox
Final Stats: 84 2/3 IP, 5.85 ERA, 1.80 WHIP, 101 K, 43 BB
2015 Peak Ranking: 19 (current)
Acquired from San Francisco on Aug. 31 for Alejandro De Aza and cash
Links

Season in Review: After being signed by the Giants out of Venezuela in September 2012 as an older international free agent at age 21, Ysla had shown promise at the lower levels of the minors. As an older pitcher in the Gulf Coast League, he struck out 52 hitters in 51 innings with a 1.00 WHIP. He continued that success in 2014 at a more age-appropriate level, posting a 2.45 ERA and striking out 115 hitters in 121 1/3 innings, although his 45 walks were a bit high. But Ysla struggled when he was promoted to High-A San Jose and the hitter-friendly California League to start 2015. The 23-year-old allowed 22 earned runs in 14 innings on 31 hits and 14 walks in his first five starts and was summarily moved to the bullpen until mid-July. After a brief return to the rotation began with four solid starts and unraveled with 10 more earned runs in 6 2/3 innings in his final two starts, he again returned to the bullpen, again finding improved success. In all, Ysla fared better in relief, posting a 4.69 ERA in 48 innings as opposed to an 8.18 ERA in nine total starts for San Jose.
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December 4, 2015 at 5:18 PM

Red Sox designate Cecchini to make room for Price


The Red Sox announced today that Garin Cecchini has been designated for assignment to make room on the roster for newly acquired free agent pitcher David Price.

Cecchini, a once-promising prospect, has tumbled down the prospect lists over the past couple seasons. He peaked as high as third on our rankings here at SoxProspects.com back in September of 2013 after hitting .322/.443/.471 between Salem and Portland that season. However, Triple-A has proved to be a challenge that he has been unable to conquer thus far. Cecchini's fall from grace began in 2014 with Pawtucket, batting .263/.341/.371 in 114 games. He was called up to Boston for a game on June 1 of that year, but was sent right back down after the game. He reappeared in Boston for a cup of coffee in late September of 2014, playing in 11 total games with the Red Sox.
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at 8:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Jonathan Aro and Ty Buttrey


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 28 to 23. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#24 Jonathan Aro, RHP
2015 Teams: Portland Sea Dogs, Pawtucket Red Sox, Boston Red Sox
Final Stats: 74 IP, 3.04 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 72 K, 18 BB (minors); 10 1/3 IP, 6.97 ERA, 1.84 WHIP, 8 K, 4 BB (majors)
2015 Peak Ranking: 21 (current)
Links

Season in Review: Aro’s rapid ascent through the system culminated with two brief stints in Boston in 2015. After spending time with Greenville and Salem in 2014, Aro started this season in Portland, and after only 22 1/3 successful innings, he moved up to Pawtucket. He allowed four runs over his first 3 1/3 innings with the PawSox, but after that he absolutely dominated the International League, going 19 straight scoreless innings, walking three and striking out 27 while allowing only 10 hits.
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at 7:00 AM

November Notes: Margot & co. depart & reviews ramp up


Here are this month's minor league notes:

  • The biggest news of last month was the trade that sent Red Sox prospects to San Diego in exchange for closer Craig Kimbrel. It took four prospects to get the deal done: Outfielder Manuel Margot (ranked fourth at the time by SoxProspects.com, pictured, right), shortstop Javier Guerra (sixth), left-handed pitcher Logan Allen (13th), and infielder Carlos Asuaje (25th). SoxProspects.com staff writer Nick Rabasco summarized the trade shortly after the news broke.
  • SoxProspects.com director of scouting Ian Cundall and assistant director Chaz Fiorino broke down the trade in their Trade Analysis write-up going into fantastic depth with scouting reports from each of the prospects dealt.
  • When the news suddenly broke, executive editor Chris Hatfield sent out the signal and assembled the SoxProspects.com podcast team for an emergency trade podcast. They left no stone unturned and dove into questions such as was this an overpay, does the strong depth of the system affect the way we should look at the deal, and many more.
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December 2, 2015 at 7:00 AM

2015 Top 40 Season in Review: Noe Ramirez and Carlos Asuaje


This week, we recap the next six players in the season-end Top 40, going from 28 to 23. All entries in this year's Top 40 Season in Review series can be found here.

#26 Noe Ramirez, RHP
2015 Teams: Pawtucket Red Sox, Boston Red Sox
Final stats: 42 2/3 IP, 2.32 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 38 K, 18 BB (minors); 13 IP, 4.15 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, 13 K, 7 BB (majors)
2015 Peak Ranking: 22 (Current)
Season in Review: 2014 | 2012
Links

Season in Review: A third consecutive standout season by Ramirez took him all the way to the major leagues in 2015, making him the eighth member of the Red Sox fruitful 2011 draft class to make it to the show. The 25-year-old righty made his big league debut on July 3, coming on for the 10th inning and taking the loss against the Houston Astros. His first three major league outings were inauspicious, as he allowed nine runs, only three earned, in five innings. Ramirez was much better after his September 1 recall, giving up three runs on six hits in eight innings across 14 appearances. 
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