January 5, 2017 at 10:14 AM
- The 2016 Winter Meetings were extremely hectic for Dave Dombrowski, as the Red Sox acquired All-Star left-hander Chris Sale and right-handed reliever Tyler Thornburg in trades that made a sizable dent in the Red Sox farm system. After the dust settled, SoxProspects.com top prospect Yoan Moncada, Michael Kopech, Luis Alexander Basabe, and Victor Diaz went to Chicago in the Sale trade a few hours after Mauricio Dubon, Josh Pennington, and Travis Shaw were sent to the Brewers as part of the Thornburg deal.
This meant that SoxProspects.com's Director of Scouting Ian Cundall, with help from Senior Staff Writer James Dunne and Staff Writer Conor Duffy, was busy as well. He wrote a two-part analysis on the Sale trade, one discussing the hitting prospects that were dealt, and the other discussing the pitchers. He also wrote a detailed analysis on the players traded for Thornburg.
- Episode 110 of the SoxProspects.com podcast was also dedicated to the pair of trades Dombrowski made. Cundall and SoxProspects.com Executive Editor Chris Hatfield talked about the trades, discussed their opinions, and reviewed the state of the Red Sox major league club, as well as what's left of the minor league system.
- The trades led to the challenge of re-ranking the system for the SoxProspects.com team. New rankings were posted in the middle of the month, with Andrew Benintendi, Rafael Devers, and Jason Groome rounding out the top three.
- Dombrowski was not done trading, as he pulled off a deal on December 20 that sent Clay Buchholz to the Phillies for minor league second baseman Josh Tobias. Tobias is 24 years old and split 2016 between Low A Lakewood, hitting .304/.379/.444 in 93 games, and High A Clearwater, where he hit .254/.333/.357 in 23 games.
- Here at SoxProspects.com, we began our new practice of posting on the News Page each time player page scouting reports are added or updated. The most recent adds and updates on a set of Dominican Summer League players our Ian Cundall scouted at the Fall Instructional League, including the system's new number 18 prospect, Bryan Mata, can be found here.
- The Red Sox also lost two players and added three in the 2016 Rule 5 Draft. They lost Aneury Tavarez to the Baltimore Orioles and Justin Haley to the Los Angeles Angels (via two trades in the interim) and selected infielder Josh Rutledge, who had been with the Red Sox since July 2015 but signed with Colorado this offseason, in the Major League phase, then selected right-handed pitcher Harrison Cooney from the Angels and left-handed pitcher Josh Smith from the Pirates in the Triple-A phase of the draft.
- The Venezuelan Winter League, Dominican Winter League, and the Roberto Clemente (Puerto Rico) Professional Leagues have all progressed to their respective postseasons. The biggest news, however, was that starting pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez hurt his knee during his last start. For more, catch up on all winter league action from December here: December 6, December 12, December 19, December 27.
- Catcher Jake Romanski was suspended 50 games due to testing positive for Amphetamine. The 26-year old put together a very nice season in Double-A Portland, batting .308/.341/.410 in 90 games.
- The Red Sox also made smaller transactions on the minor league side in the month of December. They signed outfielder Junior Lake, third baseman Matt Dominguez, right-handed pitcher Marcus Walden, and catcher Dan Butler to minor league deals with invitations to spring training, and reportedly signed utilityman and former Sox farmhand Heiker Meneses per the player on Facebook. Williams Jerez was also outrighted to Triple-A Pawtucket after being designated for assignment when the club signed Mitch Moreland. To look through all Red Sox transactions, check out the transaction page at SoxProspects.com.
- The Salem Red Sox will be welcoming Ben Gellman-Chomsky as their new Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations. He will cover all of Salem's 140 games, as well as oversee the program stories and game notes. He will replace Kevin Burke, who was with the Red Sox for the past two seasons. We'd like to wish Kevin the best of luck in his future endeavors.
Photo Credit: Yoan Moncada by Kelly O'Connor