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SoxProspects News

June 1, 2021 at 7:00 AM

Minor Notes: Casas, Downs, Duran head to Olympic Qualifiers; Bello jumps 15 spots in June 1 rankings

 Here are this week's minor league notes:
  • The SoxProspects rankings received a refresh for June 1. Gilberto Jimenez leaped Tanner Houck to go from No. 6 to No. 4, while Garrett Whitlock graduated. Brayan Bello (pictured, left) had the biggest jump, going from No. 24 to No. 9, entering the top 10.
  • In one of the week's biggest moves, outfielder Franchy Cordero was optioned from Boston to Worcester on Thursday. Cordero struggled in the big leagues, hitting .179/.228/.274 across 99 at-bats. However, he has taken more kindly to Triple-A pitching, as he has a .417/.462/.917 with two home runs since joining Worcester. However, this is an incredibly small 12 at-bat sample.
  • Colten Brewer,  a right-handed reliever, was the countermove. He was recalled the following day.
  • Right-handed pitcher Austin Brice, who was designated for assignment May 21, cleared waivers and was outrighted to Worcester.
  • Each of the top three prospects in the system, as well as a few others, were placed on the temporary inactive list, as they will play for their country in Olympic qualifying tournaments this week. No. 1 prospect Triston Casas, as well as No. 3 Jarren Duran will be representing Team USA, while No. 2 Jeter Downs is playing for Colombia. Oddanier Mosqueda and Enmanuel De Jesus each will pitch for Venezuela.
  • Duran has impressed Team USA manager Mike Scioscia in the team's training camp before the Olympic qualifying round. He was the only player to hit a home run in Team USA's three exhibition games and is slated to be the starting centerfielder. WEEI's Rob Bradford has the story.
  • Bradford also wrote a story on Josh Winckowski (pictured, right), who pitched seven shutout, one-hit innings on Saturday to lower his ERA to a minuscule 1.33 across his five starts this season.
  • Keeping with the trend of pitchers, Bradford highlighted the remaking of Brandon Workman in the Worcester bullpen. He has allowed one run in seven innings of work since signing a minor league deal with Boston on May 6.
  • Despite success at the major league level, Michael Chavis was sent down to Worcester once Christian Arroyo returned from the injured list. Bradford discussed why Triple-A is the best place for Chavis at the moment.
  • With the Red Sox in the thick of a tough AL East division race with Tampa Bay and New York, it can't be too early to discuss how Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom will approach acquiring reinforcements. Bradford discussed the Byung-Yung Kim trade as a historical example, which occurred on May 29, 2003. 
  • In a separate piece, Bradford proposed a trade for Pittsburgh reliever Richard Rodriguez. The trade would be one for one: Rodriguez in exchange for Michael Chavis.
  • Chad Finn of the Boston Globe had a feature on Emma Tiedemann, who is Portland's new play-by-play announcer. She replaced Mike Antonellis, who is now with Worcester.

Players of the Week 5/25-5/30

Josh Winckowski, RHP, Portland
1 G, 1-0, 7 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 9 K

Winckowski turned in arguably the best start in the system this season for Portland on Saturday. The right-hander allowed just one baserunner through his seven innings of work, retiring the final 10 Yard Goats that he faced. He also struck out nine Hartford batters. The 22-year-old is now No. 24 in the system after moving up three slots in the June 1 rankings. Winckowski was acquired from the Mets in the three-team deal that sent Andrew Benintendi for Kansas City and through five starts, he has an ERA of 1.33. His WHIP is even more sparkling, at 0.89 through 27 innings. 

Johan Mieses, OF, Portland
6 G, 23 AB, 9 H, 4 HR, 5 R, 10 RBI, 1 BB, 3 K, .391/.417/1.000

Mieses continued to rake in Portland, as he led the system in a litany of categories this week, including home runs, RBI, hits, and slugging percentage. The 25-year-old signed with the organization as a minor league free agent before the ill-fated 2020 season and he stuck around for the 2021 campaign. While he is currently unranked and projects as high-minors depth, Mieses is having a great season so far at the plate. He's slashing .288/.374/.725 with 11 home runs and 22 RBI in just 80 at-bats. He is also striking out in 18.7 percent of his at-bats, which is considerably lower than his career average.

Photo Credit: Brayan Bello and Josh Winckowski by Kelly O'Connor