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January 4, 2022 at 3:00 PM

SoxProspects.com top stories of 2021


The 2021 season was not quite a return to normalcy, especially at the minor league level. However, a full slate of games something more closely resembling a traditional operation here at SoxProspects.com, a resurgent major league squad, and the organization's highest draft pick in over 50 years led to a surge in interest in the system. With that background, we present our most-read articles and most-downloaded podcasts of 2021.

What you read:

Published October 27
The Arizona Fall League was back in action, with the system's top-ranked prospect Triston Casas highlighting a contingent that also included shortstop Jeter Downs and right-hander Connor Seabold. Director of Scouting Ian Cundall gave the full rundown of all nine prospects Boston sent to Scottsdale.

Published May 5
The opening of the Triple-A season was pushed back to May, with the new Polar Park serving as the Alternate Training Site. This edition of the Scouting Scratch covered some of the players assigned to Worcester, including Jarren Duran, who was a sensation in spring training and gearing up for a trip to Olympic qualifiers, and Downs, getting ready to make his in-game debut 15 months after the trade that brought him from Los Angeles in exchange for Mookie Betts.

Published October 4
Our annual awards kicked off with a run-down of the top position players in the system during the 2021 season. 

Published August 26
People love reading about Blaze Jordan. The 2020 third-round pick who became a YouTube sensation in high school with his prodigious power has a strong following online. He highlighted this rundown on several of the most exciting prospects in the Florida Complex League.

Published June 5
The Cup of Coffee has been our morning recap of the previous day's games for more than 15 years, and this ended up one of the most-read editions of all-time. Franchy Cordero, one of the first pieces announced in the three-team trade that sent outfielder Andrew Benintendi to the Royals, struggled mightily in his first run with the major league club. On the day Boston completed the deal by receiving three players from two teams, Cordero welcomed his trade-mates by going 3 for 4 with two homers as Worcester beat Rochester in a 12-1 blowout.

Published July 8
"It seems likely that California high school shortstop Marcelo Mayer will be off the board by the time Boston’s pick rolls around at #4." The annual draft preview had even more interest as Boston possessed the fourth overall pick, highest since 1967. While the draft preview has hit on several correct selections over the years, we were happy to be wrong about this one.

Published April 13
The love for Jordan popped up here as well, with the early update on the teenage third baseman highlighting our first post-spring training roundup.

Published July 14
Duran struggled badly in his major league time, hitting just .215/.241/.336 in 33 games and missing most of September after a positive COVID test. His struggles have led some naysayers to say the Red Sox missed their chance to sell high on the 2018 draft pick, ignoring both the small sample in a tough situation as well as the fact that nobody was looking sell after he rocketed through the minors and impressed at Olympic qualifying. 

Published July 30
An unsurprising listing near the top of the most-read articles of the year was Ian's breakdown of the team's big trade deadline acquisition.

Published July 26
The only thing more exciting than an actual trade? The possibility of a trade. Despite some clear holes on the roster, the team was clinging to a narrow lead in the American League East leading up to what proved to be an extremely busy deadline around the league. Ian took a tour through the minors, checking on some players other teams may have been looking to add, and highlighting the much-improved depth that has the system on the upswing.


What you listened to:

Published December 21
Despite being published with only 10 days to go in the year, the annual interview with Alex Speier of The Boston Globe came within just three downloads of making it into the year's ten most-downloaded. 

Published November 5
Days after the Braves knocked off the Astros to win the 2021 World Series, Chris and Ian turned toward the off-season, looking at the team needs at the major league level, qualifying offer and option decisions, and the Arizona Fall League.

Published November 17
The selection of Garrett Whitlock a year ago in the Rule 5 highlighted the importance of this process, but the 2021 edition came with a special wrinkle: the fact that, due to the lockout, the draft may not ever take place. Chris and Ian looked at the players the Red Sox would add to the 40-man roster to protect and who they risk losing if the draft ever does happen.

Published August 4
The trade deadline, a wild draft signing period, and a string of promotions were hot topics as the calendar flipped to August. Chris and Ian went over the Schwarber deal, the signing of Mayer, the consequences of not inking Jud Fabian, Casas in Japan, Duran in Boston and more.

Published September 8
Toboni joined Chris and Ian for an outstanding interview that gave great insight into, among other things, the controversial (at the time) selection of Yorke and the extremely uncontroversial pick of Mayer.

Published July 6
Just before the 2021 draft, McDaniel checked in to review who Boston might be looking at with the fourth pick and beyond. 

Published December 9
A flurry of moves, highlighted by the trade that sent Hunter Renfroe to Milwaukee for two top-30 prospects (and a notable graduate), came down before the lockout. Chris and Ian discussed Alex Binelas, David Hamilton, and the season-ending rankings

Published August 10
The draft and the start of the Florida Complex League lead to a major shake-up in the site rankings. Mayer debuted in the second spot, while breakout performers like Wilkelman Gonzalez and Eddinson Paulino rocketed up the rankings.

Published July 22
This was the podcast where Chris admitted being wrong about his prediction that the Red Sox would not receive anyone in return for CJ Chatham. Also, Jim Callis of MLB Pipeline stopped in to talk about Mayer and the rest of the draft class.

Published January 20
In something of an upset, the interview with Bloom did not claim the top spot. If you get a chance, this is one worth listening to again in light of the Chief Baseball Officer getting a full, comparatively normal year to continue to build the organization in his vision.

Published July 15
You all really are interested in the draft, huh.

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The team here at SoxProspects.com wants to thank all of you for reading, listening, stopping by the forums, interacting with us on Twitter, and everything in between. We hope to bring you another year of worthwhile content as the top source for news and analysis across the Red Sox system. Happy 2022!