SoxProspects News

April 22, 2019 at 12:15 PM

Minor Notes: Chavis makes MLB debut


Here are Monday's minor league notes:

  • With Dustin Pedroia, Eduardo Nunez, and Brock Holt all on the Injured List, Boston called up SoxProspects.com's No. 1 prospect Michael Chavis (pictured) After starting five games at second base for Pawtucket this season, Chavis made his first MLB start on Sunday at second base. On Saturday, he pinch-hit in the top of the ninth in a tie game and roped a double to center field that, according to Statcast, left his bat at 108.7 MPH. 
  • For more on Chavis, Jen McCaffrey of The Athletic (subscription required) wrote a piece on what the Red Sox can expect from the 2014 first-round draft pick. 
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at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Scorching hot Duran delivers first homer


4/22 Cup of Coffee: It was a quiet day on the farm, with the two affiliates in action combining for just three runs. Jarren Duran (pictured) continued his excellent play, homering on an otherwise lackluster day for Salem. Pawtucket suffered a sweep in Syracuse, while Portland and Greenville were off.

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The PawSox squandered numerous opportunities, going 1 for 17 with runners in scoring position as the Mets completed the three-game series sweep. Gorkys Hernandez reached base three times, going 2 for 4 with a walk and two stolen bases. Josh Ockimey had a triple and a walk, while Jantzen Witte recorded a pair of doubles. Mike Shawaryn allowed four runs (three earned) on five hits in five innings. Travis Lakins and Jenrry Mejia were solid in relief, combining for three scoreless innings.
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April 21, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Duran leads offensive explosion; Scherff sharp again


4/21 Cup of Coffee: With two postponements Friday night, it was another busy day for the Red Sox affiliates. Salem was the lone winner Saturday night with an offensive outburst lead by Jarren Duran (pictured) and Dylan Hardy. In Greenville, Alex Scherff (pictured) continued his promising start to the season as the Drive lost in heartbreaking fashion.

Syracuse Mets (NYM) 5, Pawtucket Red Sox 2
Despite having seven batters reach base, the PawSox were unable to get much going in the first game of their doubleheader with Syracuse. Batting cleanup, Sam Travis drove in both of Pawtucket's runs with a third-inning single. Josh Ockimey had a solid night at the plate, collecting two hits while Gorkys Hernandez and Mike Miller each singled and scored a run. Josh Smith only had to pitch six innings to go the distance for Pawtucket, but his uneven performance wasn't enough to lift the PawSox. Despite striking out six and only walking one batter, Smith was tagged for eight hits and allowed five runs (three earned) to collect his first loss of 2019.

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April 20, 2019 at 9:30 AM

Cup of Coffee: Bello leads great Greenville pitching performance


4/20 Cup of Coffee: There were two more postponements on Friday, so only Portland and Greenville saw action. The Sea Dogs fell just short of completing an incredible comeback led by C.J. Chatham. The Drive received a tremendous effort on the mound, as three pitchers combined to toss a shutout with 12 strikeouts and no walks. 

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Pawtucket Red Sox @ Syracuse Chiefs (NYM), PPD (inclement weather) 
The PawSox were postponed due to rain and will be playing a doubleheader today beginning at 1:05 pm. 

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After entering the bottom of the seventh down 10-1, Portland broke out for eight runs, but it was still too little too late. C.J. Chatham had a big game, going 2 for 4 with a double and four RBI. Brett Netzer went 2 for 3, Bobby Dalbec ripped an RBI double, and Tate Matheny collected two RBI. Denyi Reyes took the loss after allowing nine runs in just 3 1/3 innings. Durbin Feltman struggled as well, allowing a walk and a two-run home run in his only inning of work. 

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Frederick Keys (BAL) @ Salem Red Sox, PPD (inclement weather)
Salem was also postponed due to rain and will be playing a doubleheader today beginning at 1:00 pm. 

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The Drive got three stellar pitching performances, the first from starter Brayan Bello (pictured) who went five scoreless innings and struck out five without walking a batter. Yorvin Pantoja and Rio Gomez each went two innings in relief and did not allow a hit or a walk. Pantoja struck out four and Gomez struck out three. Grant Williams roped a two-run single for Greenville's only runs. Kole Cottam and Devlin Granberg each had two-hit games and Jordan Wren tripled and walked. 

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Player of the Night: 19-year old Brayan Bello turned in this third consecutive solid outing to start the season. Overall, the righty has surrendered just two runs in 14 innings, good for a 1.29 ERA. Bello was an international free agent signing in 2017. He spent most of last season in the DSL, where he posted a 1.68 ERA in 64 1/3 innings. 

Photo Credit: Brayan Bello by Kelly O'Connor



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April 19, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Dominance ongoing for Mata; Esplin powers Greenville


4/19 Cup of Coffee: All three games on Thursday's slate were low-scoring affairs. Tyler Esplin and Triston Casas provided the offense in Greenville's win as Chris Machamer and a pair of relievers completed a shutout. Portland and Salem both had tough-luck losses, despite notable individual efforts. Bryan Mata (pictured, left) continues to inflict ongoing harm on Carolina League hitters in his repeat engagement in the circuit, extending his scoreless streak to 14 innings. 

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Portland missed out on several opportunities in a homestand-opening loss, going 1 for 10 with runnners in scoring position. Keith Curcio picked up a pair of hits, including the Sea Dogs' only double. Starter Kyle Hart took the loss, allowing two runs on four hits in 4 1/3. Jordan Weems turned in a strong outing in long relief, striking out seven of the 15 batters he faced. He also allowed one run on two hits in his 3 2/3 frames. 
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April 18, 2019 at 12:00 PM

Minor Notes: Swihart DFA'd, Holt begins rehab assignment


Here are Thursday's minor league notes:

  • Tuesday was a busy day for player movement, with the big story being Blake Swihart (pictured, right) being designated for assignment. Swihart was a first-round pick in 2011, with the pick being received as compensation for losing Adrian Beltre to Texas in free agency. Swihart was the top prospect in the system at the end of the 2014 season after he hit .293/.341/.469 in 110 games between Portland and Pawtucket. 
  • Sandy Leon was called up from Pawtucket to take Swihart's place on the roster. Leon was hitting just .120/.154/.120 over 25 at-bats for the PawSox. The PawSox activated Jake Romanski from the injured list to fill their catching void. 
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at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Curcio knocks 4 hits; Lin delivers 3 RBI


4/18 Cup of Coffee: For the upper minors, it was a night of offensive battles, as both Pawtucket and Portland needed 11 runs to record victories. Another recurring theme was ineffective starting pitching, as Chandler Shepherd, Dedgar Jimenez and Yasel Santana each allowed six runs or more. Michael Chavis continued his offensive tear, notching his fourth home run this season. Salem failed to stave off the sweep against Down East in a four-hour, 12-minute, 11-inning nail-biter. 

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The PawSox were able to overcome Vladimir Guerrero Jr.'s tape measure home run and a seven-run first inning by the Bison in an offensive outburst where each team belted 13 hits. Four Pawtucket hitters had two hits and four more had multiple RBI. Tzu-Wei Lin (pictured, left) led the way, going 2 for 5 with a pair of doubles and three RBI, while Michael Chavis drilled his fourth home run of 2019 in the seventh inning. All 11 of the Red Sox' runs came across three frames. Chandler Shepherd allowed seven runs, none of which were earned, on five hits in 2/3 of an inning. Josh Ockimey committed an error with two outs, allowing the stanza to continue. Bobby Poyner struck out six batters in two innings as part of a bullpen that allowed just one run in 8 1/3 frames of work.

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April 17, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Holt begins a rehab assignment, Crawford strikes out eight


4/17 Cup of Coffee: A late Greenville rally was the only thing that saved the system from being swept on Tuesday night, though there were some impressive performances in the losses. Brock Holt made a rehab appearance with the PawSox, Mike Shawaryn and Kutter Crawford (pictured, right) pitched well in losses, and Grant Williams hit a clutch double to lift Greenville. Darwinzon Hernandez struck out the first two batters he faced, but he slowly lost his control as he continues to be stretched out after working as a reliever in spring training.

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It was a busy day in Pawtucket, with Brock Holt starting a rehab assignment and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. in town with Buffalo. Mike Shawaryn was the tough-luck loser in the first game of the doubleheader, allowing two runs on six hits over six innings, walking one and striking out six. Shawaryn now has 20 strikeouts against only three walks over 17 1/3 innings this season. Josh Taylor followed with a scoreless inning of relief. 
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April 16, 2019 at 1:00 PM

Minor Notes: Ockimey and Mata start hot


Here are Tuesday's minor league notes:
  • While it was not enough to earn him Player of the (extended) Week this week, SoxProspects.com top prospect Michael Chavis (pictured, right) had a boom or bust start to the season. On opening day, he went 3-for-4 with a home run and walk. He then went hitless in his next 19 at-bats, though he did reach on four walks. In the two games over the weekend he caught fire, going 5-for-8 with two home runs, a double, three runs scored, and two RBI. Perhaps most interesting is his defensive versatility writes Christopher Smith for MassLive. Christopher notes that he has started his first ever four games at second base along with three at third base and one at first.
  • There are injuries and illnesses all over the Boston outfield, and, as Bill Koch writes for the Providence Journal, it is testing their outfield depth. The only member of the Pawtucket outfield currently on the 40-man roster is Sam Travis. Now a post-prospect, the 25-year old has really struggled in the upper minors including a .258/.317/.360 line at Pawtucket last year. This season has not been much better for him, going only 6-for-26 to start the year in Pawtucket and going 2-for-7 in a brief two-game stint with the Red Sox.
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at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Chatham and Dalbec power Portland


4/16 Cup of Coffee: An offensive outburst gave Portland just their second win of the 2019 season. The Sea Dogs' lineup tallied 11 hits, including five doubles while C.J. Chatham (pictured) and Bobby Dalbec combined for five RBI's on the night. Things did not fare as well for Salem and Greenville, as both teams struggled to get anything going Monday night. Meanwhile, in what has become a feature of the minor league season, the PawSox had their game postponed due to inclement weather.

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Pawtucket Red Sox vs. Buffalo Bisons (TOR), postponed
Pawtucket had its third game of the season postponed due to inclement weather last night. The game will be made up tomorrow at 4:05 PM.

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The Sea Dogs put in their best offensive performance of 2019 with a season-high nine runs. C.J. Chatham led the charge with two doubles and three runs batted in while Bobby Dalbec recorded two hits (one double) and drove in two. Not to be outdone, Josh Tobias collected three hits and two doubles of his own. Jeremy Rivera also added a double while Brett Netzer contributed two hits, an RBI, and a run scored.
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April 15, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Blasts from Chavis, Ockimey power PawSox


4/15 Cup of Coffee: The PawSox were the only affiliate to come away victorious on Sunday. Sixth-inning homers from Michael Chavis (pictured) and Josh Ockimey and a three-hit day from Rusney Castillo led the way at McCoy Stadium. Greenville fell in a slugfest, Portland's early-season woes continued, and the rain did not cooperate in Salem. 

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The day after breaking out of a week-long slump with a 470-foot homer, Michael Chavis followed up with a 467-foot blast that broke a 2-2 tie. It's the third home run of the season for the organization's top prospect, to go along with a single. Two batters after Chavis's sixth-inning homer, Josh Ockimey ripped a two-run insurance shot. Rusney Castillo was 3 for 4 with a double, bringing his average to .294 as his embarks on his quest for a third-straight .300 season. Ryan Weber got the start, allowing two runs on six hits in five innings. Travis Lakins was impressive in relief, striking out two in a perfect eighth inning. Bobby Poyner worked around a pair of walks in the ninth to earn the save.
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April 14, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Chavis goes yard, Portland struggles continue


4/14 Cup of Coffee: It was an exciting night in the Red Sox system as six games were played, four of which were decided by one run. Michael Chavis (pictured) helped Pawtucket reach their highest run total of 2019 with a monster home-run, while the Salem and Greenville lineups came alive to help hold off late comebacks. Portland’s early-season struggles continued, losing both games of their double-header by only a run despite strong performances from Kyle Hart and Matthew Kent.

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The bats came alive to help Pawtucket cruise to its fifth win of the season, tallying a season-high seven runs. Michael Chavis and reigning International League batting champion Rusney Castillo were the heroes of the night, each slugging a home run. Castillo added another hit, while Chavis went 3 for 4 in addition to his 470-foot home run. Cole Sturgeon also came up big for Pawtucket, collecting two hits, including an RBI double, to open the scoring. On the mound, Josh Smith was devastatingly efficient, needing only 75 pitches to get through six innings while striking out 10 Syracuse batters. Josh Taylor and Jenrry Mejia combined for two scoreless innings to close out the game, each striking out one batter apiece.

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April 13, 2019 at 6:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Bats fall silent as Padron impresses in relief


4/13 Cup of Coffee: It was a very quiet Friday night on the farm, as nobody in the system recorded an extra-base hit. Part of the reason, however, was due to a rainout in Salem and a suspended game between Trenton and Portland. Trevor Kelley and Angel Padron (pictured) each turned in impressive relief outings, combining for nine strikeouts and no walks in six innings.

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The Pawtucket bats were silent against Syracuse, scattering just seven singles. Josh Ockimey reached twice with a walk and a single and scored the lone run. Mike Miller also walked and singled, driving in Ockimey. Chandler Shepherd didn't feature his best control, walking five in 5 1/3 innings, but he was able to limit the damage to two runs. Trevor Kelley punched out four without a walk in 1 2/3 innings and Bobby Poyner tossed a scoreless ninth.
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April 12, 2019 at 6:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Mata, Ramirez shine in home openers


4/12 Cup of Coffee: The 2019 schedules got underway at McCoy Stadium and Haley Toyota Field, with Pawtucket and Salem splitting their home openers. All three affiliates in action saw stellar starting pitching, with Bryan Mata (pictured), Erasmo Ramirez, and Thaddeus Ward combining for just one earned run allowed in 16 1/3 innings, striking out 20 and walking only one. Josh Ockimey homered for the PawSox, while Jarren Duran, Ryan Fitzgerald, and Kervin Suarez continue to pile up the doubles for Salem and Greenville. 

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The PawSox celebrated their home opener with a bang, as Josh Ockimey and Bryce Brentz blasted back-to-back homers in the second inning. It was the first round-tripper for Brentz since re-joining the Red Sox system. The 2010 first-round pick hit 129 homers during his first stint in the organization from 2010 to 2017. Ockimey added a pair of walks to his solo shot. The two runs were plenty of support for Erasmo Ramirez. The veteran righty fired six shutout innings, allowing just three hits. He struck out five without issuing a walk, and faced only two batters over the minimum. Jenrry Mejia recorded his third save, striking out three in 1 1/3 perfect innings.
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April 11, 2019 at 12:00 PM

Minor Notes: Duran and Bello highlight weather shortened week



Here are Thursday's minor league notes:

  • The SoxProspects podcast team released their most recent episode Wednesday, the first since their trip to Spring Training. The guys previewed the minor league season for the Red Sox system from top to bottom and highlighted which players they are excited to see after getting a good look at many of them this spring.
  • SoxProspects has begun overhauling the layout of our player pages in order to make scouting reports, stats, and photos easier to for you to access. For now, the update will apply to the top-10 prospects, but player pages will be updated as prospects enter the top 10 and may be expanded to the top 20 prospects in time.
  • After a short rehab stint with the Drive, the Red Sox have activated Dustin Pedroia, optioning Tzu-Wei Lin in a counter move.  
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at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Postponements and rough pitching performances


Cup of Coffee 4/10: It was a light night in the Red Sox system, as two of the four games on the docket were postponed. Pawtucket's matchup with Buffalo succumbed to cold temperatures, while Monday's snow in Portland wiped out the Sea Dogs' entire series with Binghamton. Two big innings doomed Salem, while Greenville could not complete the comeback against Augusta. Each starter allowed more than five runs, while the two teams combined to allow 19 runners to cross the plate.

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Pawtucket Red Sox @ Buffalo Bison (TOR), PPD (Cold)
Pawtucket's contest with the Bison was pushed back to April 29 due to temperatures in the mid-30s in western New York.

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Binghamton Rumble Ponies (NYM) @ Portland Sea Dogs, PPD (Wet Grounds)
For the third consecutive evening, snow on Monday pushed back the series with Binghamton. A make-up date was not announced for either game in the postponed doubleheader.
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April 10, 2019 at 1:37 PM

Podcast Ep. #155: Season Preview/Spring Training Review


Yeah, about that World Series title defense—Chris and Ian have some thoughts. First up, now is not the time to panic. As Ian notes, the West Coast swing always presents challenges. And second, minor league baseball is back. The full-season affiliates are playing games and the guys are dialed in to break down the rosters and share more thoughts from camp. (Speaking of camp, make sure you check out our new Patreon benefit – Game Updates.) Ian goes over his impressions of a stacked Portland roster. They discuss the talent in Greenville, highlighting the depth of teenage talent in the system. The break down the rest of the system, plus the guys who stood out in camp who did not make a full season roster. And the guys bust open the mailbag to close out the show.

Listen in!
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at 1:13 PM

Introducing Updated Player Pages


We are pleased to introduce an updated player page template for our SoxProspects player pages, which we are starting to roll out this afternoon. Scroll on over to any of the player pages for our top ten prospects to take a look.  For example, here’s a link to the new player page for Tanner Houck.  You can compare that to the look of his old player page, which is linked here. Note that you may need to refresh your page for the new page to appear. 

Some benefits of the new template include:
  • 54% larger photos, many thanks to intrepid photographer Kelly O’Connor
  • White background behind primary text (as opposed to old grey background) for easier reading
  • Cleaner formatting for scouting reports, links, and stats (reduced wasted space, cleaner and more balanced white space)
  • Larger fonts
  • Updated and reconfirmed data
  • More consistency on data presentation
  • Twitter and Instagram links for individual players
  • Space for listing the former college commitments for high school draft signees
  • Links to Kelly’s photo pages for individual players
  • Clarity on listing birthplace rather than residence 
  • “Open new window” links for current season stats and advanced stats
As of this afternoon, the new template has been rolled out to the top ten prospects in the system.  We will apply the template to other prospects if they enter the top ten on a rolling basis.  Additionally, we expect that we may be able to expand the template to all top twenty prospects some time in May. We also think that we might be able to apply the new template to all current players next off-season. (That one is a stretch goal with lots of contingencies).

The scouting reports for the top ten prospects have also been updated in conjunction with this update.

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at 6:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Duran notches four hits, Shawaryn and Bello get in the win column


4/10 Cup of Coffee: Jarren Duran (pictured, right) led a 19-hit attack for Salem, while Mike Shawaryn and Brayan Bello both had strong starts to pick up their first wins of the season. Joan Martinez was dominant in a long-relief role for Salem, and Rusney Castillo went deep to lead the PawSox offense. 

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A three-run blast from Rusney Castillo, his first of the year, and six solid innings from Mike Shawaryn led the PawSox past the Bisons. It was the second straight outing where Shawaryn walked one and struck out seven, and he allowed only one run on six hits to lower his ERA to 3.18 to start the year. Bobby Poyner picked up the save after he struck out three in the ninth, but he also gave up a run on two hits.
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April 9, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Josh Ockimey homers to secure Pawtucket comeback


4/8 Cup of Coffee: On another rainy evening, only two Red Sox affiliates were able to get games in. On a foggy night in Buffalo, Josh Ockimey's (pictured) eighth inning long ball highlighted a late-inning PawSox comeback. The Salem bats were quiet yet again as the Red Sox began their series with Lynchburg on the wrong foot. Greenville will make up their game in a doubleheader tomorrow, while Portland will play their makeup doubleheader in May. 
After falling behind early, the PawSox were able to storm back with five unanswered runs, including two apiece in the seventh and eight innings. Mike Miller and Tony Renda each had a major part to play in the come from behind win, each collecting two hits and adding a pair of runs and RBI's respectively. Juan Centeno added another two hits and Josh Ockimey capped off the comeback with a two-run bomb in the eighth inning, his first on the young season.
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April 8, 2019 at 12:00 PM

Minor Notes: Mata, Hernandez off to fast starts as minor league season gets underway


Here are Monday's minor league notes:

  • On Thursday's minor league opening day, SoxProspects.com released its Pre-Season All-Stars. Michael Chavis, Bobby Dalbec, and Triston Casas headline the hitters. Check out the rest of the all-star lineup here. Part 2 included four starting pitchers and three relievers, with Darwinzon Hernandez leading the starters and Durbin Feltman headlining the relievers. Check out the rest of the staff here
  • The minor league season is underway, which means another year of the Cup of Coffee at SoxProspects.com. In each Cup, the writing staff will briefly recap each Sox minor league game along with announcing a player of the night. Check out the most recent edition from James Dunne, highlighting Hernandez' strong start to 2019. 
  • Some notable hitters who are off to fast starts this year include C.J. Chatham (pictured), Bobby Dalbec in Portland and Jarren Duran in Salem. Chatham is 5 for 15 with three doubles, Dalbec is hitting .286/.412/.500 in 17 plate appearances, and Duran is 6 for 15 with a triple and a stolen base. 
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at 6:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Hernandez strikes out 10 in five shutout frames


4/7 Cup of Coffee: Despite the affiliates only winning two of their four games, it was a big day for the top prospects in Boston's farm system. Second-ranked prospect Darwinzon Hernandez (pictured) was dominant in his first Double-A start. He picked up the win with the support of a two-run homer by Bobby Dalbec, ranked fourth by SoxProspects.com. Top ranked Michael Chavis made his first official appearance at second base, his third position played through his first four games. Triston Casas, the #3 prospect, delivered his first professional RBI in the third before winning the game with a 10th-inning sacrifice fly.

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The PawSox nearly pulled off an improbable rally, posting a five-run seventh inning, but the Mets scratched an eighth-inning score to seal the series win. Michael Chavis got his first start at second base as he continues to work on his positional flexibilty. He did not have a ball hit to him and recorded his only putout on a fifth-inning caught stealing. At the plate, the 2014 first rounder walked and drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. Veterans Rusney Castillo and Mike Miller had two hits apiece. Josh Smith surrendered four runs (three earned) on six hits in 4 2/3 innings. He struck out seven and walked four. Left-hander Josh Taylor was saddled with the loss, giving up a run on two hits in two innings, striking out four. 
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April 7, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Mata shines as system struggles


Cup of Coffee 4/6: The Red Sox system struggled during a crowded Saturday Slate. Bryan Mata's 2019 debut was the lone bright spot of the day, while Tanner Houck began his campaign on rough footing. On a quiet day for the system's bats, Tony Renda and Gorkys Hernandez hit home runs, while Jarren Duran continued his hitting streak to start the season. 

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The PawSox took an early lead but they were quickly overcome in the first game of the doubleheader against a strong Syracuse team. Starter Chandler Shepherd picked up the loss, going five innings while giving up four runs and striking out six. Travis Lakins struggled in relief, surrendering two hits and an earned run in his sole inning of relief. On the offensive end, Tony Renda's (pictured, left) second-inning home run and a double by Sam Travis were the lone highlights, as the PawSox dropped their first game of 2019. 

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April 6, 2019 at 7:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Reyes, Chatham standout for Portland


4/5 Cup of Coffee: Only two Red Sox affiliates got games in on a rainy Friday. Pawtucket and Salem were both postponed and will play doubleheaders today. Denyi Reyes (pictured) turned in a terrific outing for Portland and C.J. Chatham collected three hits. Greenville walked off in the bottom of the ninth, as Triston Casas crossed the plate for the winning run. 


Pawtucket Red Sox @ Syracuse Mets (NYM), PPD (inclement weather)
The PawSox' second game of the season was postponed due to rain. They will make it up as part of a doubleheader today beginning at 12:05 pm. 

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The Sea Dogs let this one slip away late, allowing five runs in the final three innings, spoiling a terrific Double-A debut for Denyi Reyes. The 22-year-old righty tossed six innings and allowed only two hits and one run while punching out four. SoxProspects.com's eighth-ranked prospect C.J. Chatham had a big game, going 3 for 5 with a pair of doubles. Durbin Feltman's first appearance for Portland did not go well, as he blew the save in the ninth inning by allowing a run on two walks and a hit. Tate Matheny provided a spark on defense, making a tremendous diving grab in right-center field.
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April 5, 2019 at 6:07 PM

2019 SoxProspects Pre-Season All-Stars Pt. 2 - Pitchers


For Part Two of our look at the best the Red Sox system has to offer entering 2019, we look to the mound and honor the pitchers selected as SoxProspects.com Pre-Season All-Stars. The honorees herein trend older than those in the first post, with six of the seven hurlers herein beginning the year in Pawtucket or Portland.

Starting pitcher: Darwinzon Hernandez, Portland Sea Dogs
Hernandez earned a 40-man roster spot in advance of December's Rule 5 draft and will begin 2019 with the Sea Dogs. He was initially called up to Portland on August 22 last year after a strong season in Salem, pitching exclusively in relief as he neared his innings limitation for the season. Although that exposure to relief work, combined with a breakout performance pitching in relief in the Arizona Fall League and a fantastic stint in big league camp during Spring Training led many to wonder  if the Red Sox might fast-track the 22-year-old to Boston as a reliever, the organization will with Hernandez as a starter to start the year. The second-ranked prospect in the system led pitchers with at least 100 innings by a full walk with 5.55 walks per nine last year, but he also outpaced the same arms by a strikeout and a half at 11.27 strikeouts per nine, showing the enticing mix of unhittable stuff and need for improvement with command/control that lead to continued speculation regarding his future.
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at 9:25 AM

2019 SoxProspects Pre-Season All-Stars Pt. 1 - Hitters


The 2019 season is upon us, and to celebrate, the SoxProspects.com staff has, after much debate, selected its Pre-Season All-Stars. At the plate and in the field, the first half of our honorees includes three guys with a ton of pop (including the system's top prospect) and probably the system's fastest player. Three members of last year's draft class, as well as an unheralded member of the 2017 international free agent class, have already jumped to the top of their position's watch lists, while some old friends, including Pawtucket's most handsomely paid player, continue to merit attention.

Catcher: Kole Cottam, Greenville Drive
Although his rookie season was cut short by a knee injury, Kole Cottam's bat showed flashes of promise after he was selected in the fourth round out of the University of Kentucky. In 31 games with Lowell, Cottam ripped eight doubles, three home runs, and tied for second on the club with 24 RBI before earning a promotion to Low-A Greenville and having his season end prematurely shortly thereafter. Cottam starts the season back with the Drive, as he will attempt to establish himself as the top offensive catcher in the system while looking to show he can stick behind the plate.


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at 6:00 AM

Cup of Coffee: Season opens with Chavis homer, Scherff heat


4/5 Cup of Coffee: The 2019 minor league season kicked off on Thursday, with some strong individual performances highlighted by a split by Sox affiliates. Top prospect Michael Chavis (pictured, left) went deep to support a solid Mike Shawaryn start for the PawSox, while Jarren Duran picked up where he left off to lead a Salem romp. The Drive fell in a pitchers' duel, wasting the contributions of an impressive Alex Scherff and a four-time All-Star at second base, while the Sea Dogs fell despite a 15-strikeout effort by a quartet of hurlers. 

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The PawSox spoiled the beginning of the debut of the re-branded Syracuse Mets and Tim Tebow Experience on the road with a three-run 10th-inning rally. Starter Mike Shawaryn got off to a very strong start, allowing just two infield hits in his first five innings of work before running into some trouble in the sixth. The right-hander's final line had him allowing three runs on four in hits in 5 1/3, striking out seven and walking one. It was a big afternoon for Michael Chavis, as Boston's top prospect blasted a solo homer to cap off 3-for-4 effort that included a walk and pair of runs scored. Mike Miller also went deep for the PawSox.
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April 4, 2019 at 12:00 PM

Minor Notes: Rosters set as Opening Day arrives


Here are Thursday's minor league notes:

  • With the minor league season starting up, the SoxProspects.com rankings have been updated for the start of the season. Michael Chavis (pictured, right) remained in the top spot, while Darwinzon Hernandez moved up to the second slot after an impressive spring. Rounding out the top five are Triston Casas, Bobby Dalbec, and Tanner Houck. You can see the top 20 here, and 21-60 here
  • Chavis headlines the Pawtucket roster, and he will be joined in the lineup by post-prospects Sandy Leon, Rusney Castillo, and Tzu-Wei Lin. The only other top 40 prospect in the lineup is 27th-ranked Josh Ockimey. The opening day starter is Mike Shawaryn, who opens the year ranked 15th, and the bullpen has some good arms with Travis Lakins, Bobby Poyner, Josh Taylor, and Chandler Shepherd all ranked in the top 60. All four pitchers are on the 40-man roster so they have a chance to see time in Boston this year. 
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April 1, 2019 at 2:30 PM

Minor Notes: Graduate gets big contract & MiLB opening day nears


With the major league team heading west to begin their regular season, so begins the transition from the Fort Report to Minor Notes. Similar to the Fort Report, Minor Notes will run on Mondays and Thursdays throughout the season, providing news and updates on all things related to the Red Sox minor league system.

Here are Monday's notes:
  • The minor league seasons for the International League, Eastern League, Carolina League, and South Atlantic League all open on Thursday, April 4th. In preparation, check out the projected rosters for Pawtucket, Portland, Salem, and Greenville on the SoxProspects.com roster page.
  • One of the most talked about players in camp was 22-year-old lefty Darwinzon Hernandez (pictured, right) after a strong performance in the Arizona Fall Lague and again this spring. He has slowly risen up the ranks after signing as an International Free Agent in August of 2013 out of Ciudad Bolivar, Venezuela. Jen McCaffrey for The Athletic ($) writes about the discovery of Hernandez and how scouting in Venezuela has changed as the political and economic tensions in the country have worsened, creating a much more dangerous climate. Hernandez is currently ranked fourth on the SoxProspects.com rankings.
  • Several prospects have received a lot of attention for the performance and potential 2019 major league impact. Chris Mason of the Eagle-Tribune writes about three prospects to watch: infielder Michael Chavis, Hernandez, and lefty reliever Travis Lakins.
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