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SoxProspects News

April 25, 2023 at 11:00 AM

Minor Notes: Valdez debuts, Bello gets sent down

Last week was another busy one for Boston across the organizational board. At the major-league level, the team's top young picture was optioned to make room for a recently-acquired lefty reliever.
Enmanuel Valdez (pictured) made his big-league debut, but it was short lived as he was sent down one day after getting called up. We also have some injury updates and other transactional news before recognizing our players of the week in Juan Chacon and Sterling Sharp



Bello down, Bernardino up
Prior to Monday's series opener against the Orioles in Baltimore, the Red Sox optioned right-hander Brayan Bello to Worcester in order to make room on the roster for left-handed reliever Brennan Bernardino.
Bello began the year on the injured list due to right forearm tightness. The 23-year-old made his season debut last Monday and has since allowed eight earned runs on 13 hits, three walks, and eight strikeouts in two starts (7 1/3 innings) against the Angels and Twins. The decision to send Bello down comes at a time when the Red Sox are planning to shift from a six-man to a five-man starting rotation. They also wanted to add another lefty to the bullpen mix to complement Richard Bleier

Bernardino, 31, was claimed off waivers from the Mariners on April 16 after fellow reliever Zack Kelly (right elbow inflammation) was transferred to the 60-day injured list. The southpaw made his major-league debut for Seattle last year but only got into two games. He struck out two in two scoreless innings of relief in his WooSox debut last Friday. On Monday, he scattered four hits over two scoreless frames in his Red Sox debut. 

Valdez gets the call
One of two prospects acquired from the Astros in last August's Christian Vazquez trade, Enmanuel Valdez made his major-league debut for the Red Sox in their game against the Twins at Fenway Park on April 19. Starting at second base and batting ninth, the left-handed hitting 24-year-old went 2 for 4 with a pair of opposite-field singles and a strikeout. He also committed a fielding error in the top of the fifth inning. 

Valdez was called up to take the place of fellow infielder Yu Chang, who was placed on the paternity leave list prior to Wednesday's game. Chang's stay on the paternity list lasted less than 24 hours, however, and Valdez was optioned back to Worcester on Thursday as a result. The Dominican Republic native is currently ranked as the No. 15 prospect in the organization.

For more on Valdez, check out this analysis from our director of scouting, Ian Cundall. 

Gettys to undergo back surgery
The Sea Dogs transferred reliever Michael Gettys from the 7-day to the 60-day injured list on Sunday. The move comes after Gettys took to Instagram last week to announce that he would be undergoing surgery to repair a herniated disc in his lower back. 

Gettys, 27, first joined the Red Sox organization as a minor-league free agent in November 2020. At that time, the former second-round draft selection of the Padres was an outfielder. He has since converted into a right-handed reliever and pitched to a 2.33 ERA with 13 strikeouts to 15 walks in 40 appearances (48 1/3 innings) between Greenville and Portland last season.

Injury news
Relief prospect Ryan Fernandez began a rehab assignment with Salem on April 19. The 24-year-old righty appeared in two games for the Red Sox during their series against Lynchburg last week and struck out six over 3 1/3 scoreless innings. Infielder Tyler Miller was activated from Greenville's injured list on Thursday and went 5 for 12 (.417) at the plate in his first three games with the Drive. Kier Meredith and Alex Erro were both been placed on Greenville's injured list last week. The same goes for Cody Scroggins in Portland.

Other roster notes
After being designated for assignment on April 17, Jake Faria cleared waivers and was outrighted to Worcester two days later. The WooSox also placed Marcus Wilson on the development list. Matt Donlan was activated from Portland's development list and made his Double-A debut for the Sea Dogs on Friday. That same day, 2022 eighth-round draft selection Jonathan Brand was added to Salem's roster from extended spring training. Feleipe Franks, who currently plays for the Atlanta Falcons of the National Football League, was released by the Red Sox on Wednesday.

New podcast

Chris and Ian sat down for a wide-ranging interview with Red Sox director of player development Brian Abraham in Episode No. 280 of the SoxProspects Podcast. Among the topics discussed were player development plans, how decisions get made throughout the course of the season, and a few key players for the organization in 2023.

Players of the Week

Juan Chacon, OF, Salem Red Sox
5 G, 18 AB, 8 H, 1 2B, 3 3B, 4 R, 5 RBI, 3 SB, .444/.545/.833

Chacon registered two multi-hit games against the Lynchburg Hillcats last week. The right-handed hitting 20-year-old is now batting .270/.451/.460 with one double, three triples, eight RBIs, eight runs scored, six stolen bases, 11 walks, and 10 strikeouts in his first 12 games (51 plate appearances) with Salem this season. A native of Venezuela, Chacon originally signed with Boston for $900,000 in July 2019.

Sterling Sharp, RHP, Portland Sea Dogs
2 G, 1-0, 0.75 ERA, 12 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, 6 K

Sharp's first full season in the Red Sox organization is off to an encouraging start. With two more quality starts against Reading at Hadlock Field last week, the 27-year-old righty now owns a 1.00 ERA with 10 strikeouts to four walks in his first three outings (18 innings) with the Sea Dogs. He is currently holding opposing hitters to a .133/.188/.200 slash line against. 

Photo Credit: Enmanuel Valdez by Kelly O'Connor