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   1. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: March 21, 2011 at 06:44 PM (#3775088)
I wouldn't be stunned if Britton was sent to Portland. The Sox seem to be taking the approach that they want their prospects above their age group and Britton certainly is in that group. Considering how well he pitched at Greenville he might be worth a look at AA to the Sox.

Catcher roulette should be interesting to watch. Exposito, Lavarnway and Federowicz are all starting to bunch up at the top of the system. I'd be curious if they'd maybe spread them out with Federowicz repeating at Salem to get all three significant PT.

Third base is another interesting position though it's a bit more organically spread out with Middlebrooks (AA), Almanzar (A+), Vitek (A?) and Cecchini (SS A) well set. If any of those guys busts out that could crowd things.

Closer to the Majors I'm curious to see the usage of Michael Bowden. I haven't read much about him but are they going to keep using him as a starter or will they continue last year's shift to the bullpen? Seems to me that if he's back in the Pawtucket rotation he's being set up for a trade, if he's in the bullpen the Sox are hoping to have a place for him somewhere along the line.

Watching the system last year it seemed like they did very little promoting in-season. I think some of that was based on early assignments to the highest possible level (e.g. Kelly, Rizzo, Iglesias) and I'm interested to see if that continues.
   2. Darren Posted: March 22, 2011 at 12:15 AM (#3775337)
It might be early yet for this, but I'm curious about what happens with Ibarra and Linares.
   3. Xander Posted: March 22, 2011 at 01:28 AM (#3775380)
The chances of Britton starting in Portland are very low. There's no reason to do it and there's already a log jam in Portland and Pawtucket's rotaion.
   4. Mattbert Posted: March 22, 2011 at 09:23 PM (#3776039)
Gauging interest in potential Boston area meetup next week...

Discussion thread here

If by some miracle momentum builds for this, maybe someone with keys could post a link/thread on ST?
   5. chris p Posted: March 24, 2011 at 02:58 PM (#3777167)
Gauging interest in potential Boston area meetup next week...

ya maybe. what were you thinking? i could easily be convinced to duck out early for opening day.

If by some miracle momentum builds for this, maybe someone with keys could post a link/thread on ST?

thread hijack!
   6. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 04, 2011 at 06:25 PM (#3785879)
The rosters have been announced.

Greenville, Salem, Portland, and Pawtucket.

Very little news overall. Kolbrin Vitek is the only Lowell player and the only 2010 draftee to get skipped up to high-A Salem. Most of the guys I was waiting on will be starting the year in Greenville - Ranaudo, Workman, Coyle, Brentz, and Jacobs. Cecchini looks to be headed to short-season ball. Younginer will be repeating Lowell, it seems.

Both Almanzar and Vitek were placed in Salem, which is a little odd and is unlikely to be good news. Either one of them isn't playing full time (that ain't happening) or one of them is moving to the outfield or first base (that isn't good). I guess the other option would be to have them split time at 3B and DH, but you'd think the Sox would want their prospects getting reps in the field.
   7. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: April 04, 2011 at 07:03 PM (#3785918)
Ranaudo at Greenville and Britton at Salem are a bit lower than I expected. I thought both might get pushed up a level. Nice to see Iglesias at AAA, I just hope the Sox aren't forcing things. Given how little he played last year I thought a return to Portland might be in the cards. This tells me the Sox still see him as the 2012 Opening Day shortstop.
   8. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 10, 2011 at 03:44 PM (#3792362)
At least we got minor league games, now.

Ranaudo had a good start, five shutout innings with four ks.

The Greenville roster's looking pretty good so far. Both Brentz and Jacobs have been ripping it up, 1500ish OPSes through three games. These are two guys who need to destroy the Sally League to attain to "real" prospect status, so it's nice to see them starting well at least.
   9. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 11, 2011 at 11:58 AM (#3793214)
Jacobs homered again last night. He's hit 3 HRs in 4 games, after hitting 6 in 72 games in his professional career previously. I know I'm just setting myself up for disappointment getting excited about four incredibly hot games, but there's always the possibility we really are watching the emergence of a prospect.
   10. Mike Emeigh Posted: April 11, 2011 at 12:31 PM (#3793223)
Salem was rained out three in a row before getting in a doubleheader yesterday. In game 1 Vitek played 3B, Almanzar 1B; in game 2 Vitek was the DH while Almanzar played 3B. I suspect that those two will rotate through the 3B/1B/DH slots.

Britton was hammered by the Keys yesterday - 7 hits and 6 ER in 2 1/3.

-- MWE
   11. villageidiom Posted: April 11, 2011 at 06:51 PM (#3793535)
I know I'm just setting myself up for disappointment getting excited about four incredibly hot games, but there's always the possibility we really are watching the emergence of a prospect.
Now, after four incredibly hot games, is the worst possible time for this.
   12. Darren Posted: April 12, 2011 at 11:13 PM (#3794939)
Reminds me of good times, my friends. Funny that that was about Mike Lowell, when he signed the contract that eventually forced his move to the Red Sox. Funny.
   13. Paxton Crawford Ranch Posted: April 13, 2011 at 02:47 PM (#3795523)
Especially encouraging for a raw guy Jacobs is the 6 walks in 6 games. How much good play does he need before getting promoted? I'd guess about half a season. Brentz on the other hand, I could see getting bumped in a couple of weeks if he keeps hitting. He's already 22 and there's nobody in the Salem outfield blocking him -- Mailman's an org guy and if Hissey isn't yet, he's close. Hazelbaker's interesting, but he could play center or hopefully be looking at a promotion of his own by mid-season.

Up in Portland, Middlebrooks is off to another hot start, hitting 391/417/739 through 6 games. He did this last year too before settling into a good-not-great year, but is another name to keep an eye out for in the box score.
   14. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 13, 2011 at 05:22 PM (#3795678)
One difference between Middlebrooks' hot start last year and his hitting in this first week is strikeout rate. Last year, wmb was striking out all the time and racking up great numbers with wildly unsustainable on-contact rates. This year he's only struck out three times in six games.

Obviously it's still way too early to conclude anything about anything, but I'm tracking strikeout rates, and wmb 's is one of the very early bright spots. (Jacobs, while his other numbers are sweet so far, is maintaining his way too high k rate of last year through the first week of games.)
   15. Darren Posted: April 14, 2011 at 02:44 AM (#3796507)
Has anyone (Philly?) tried to assess how good of a job the Sox have done in drafting, taking into consideration how many signability guys they are able to pay?
   16. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 14, 2011 at 03:35 AM (#3796546)
I jinxed Jacobs. Here comes the strikeout monster - he's now K'd 9 times in just 24 AB. And there's a new guy in Greenville, little Sean Coyle. Guess what? 7 Ks in 17 AB. Both Jacobs and Coyle have shown good power and drawn walks, but they will need to really cut down the strikeouts to advance.

(Obviously it's early yet, but that applies just as much, if not more, to the power and walks as to the strikeouts.)

Brentz is still raking, and he isn't striking out much, but as a college hitter he really shouldn't be in Greenville in the first place. The test of Brentz will be in Salem. Obviously it's better for him to be raking than not be raking, but I'm going to hold off on the excitement given his age and level.
   17. Darren Posted: April 14, 2011 at 01:52 PM (#3796717)
How good of a player is Linares thought to be? Was he one of the best in Cuba? The Red Sox gave him $750K, which suggests he was at least very good, right?

He raked in the AFL, was hitting well in spring training, and is off to a hot start in AAA this year. Patience seems to be a question mark for him, but maybe he'll be useful as a right-handed bat this year.
   18. Darren Posted: April 14, 2011 at 01:54 PM (#3796719)
And I wonder if the Sox are outsmarting themselves with Miller. He was apparently throwing high-90s in the ST out of the pen. After years of not cutting it as a starter, it seemed like a pretty good time to try him in the pen. I'm sure the Sox's expertise with pitchers will get him on track.

Edit: Kris Johnson is in sorta the same boat. He's gone out of his way to show that it's just not going to happen for him as a starter. But he's a lefty who throws in the 90s--why not try him in the pen already?
   19. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: April 14, 2011 at 02:03 PM (#3796732)
PeteAbe noted a couple of times during the Spring that Linares was getting a lot of attention. He's a bit older though, 26-27 so the problem is what you see is probably what you get. My sense on him is he is a 4th outfielder at best. I'm higher than McDonald than most but he seems to be somewhat similar to Darnell.

Rich Hill has some pretty outrageous numbers so far (8K, 1BB, 18 batters faced).
   20. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 14, 2011 at 02:04 PM (#3796734)
How good of a player is Linares thought to be? Was he one of the best in Cuba? The Red Sox gave him $750K, which suggests he was at least very good, right?
BA had him as pretty much a tweener - "upside may be fourth outfielder" kind of talk. His Cuban League stats look really great (440/550 kinda numbers in his early 20s, see SoxProspects), but I have absolutely no idea how Cuban stats translate.

I think there's a good chance that Linares will be a Red Sox for many years. Their projected outfield for 2012 and beyond is three left-handed hitters. A minimum-salary right-handed batter who can play all three outfield positions sounds like the perfect 4th outfielder.

And, of course, who knows, he could surpass Kalish for that RF job.
   21. Darren Posted: April 14, 2011 at 02:38 PM (#3796770)
This BP/ESPN article translates Leslie Anderson's (???) numbers from Cuba. Anderson hit about as well as Linares in some years, yet the translations peg him as a pretty mediocre.
   22. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: April 17, 2011 at 12:04 PM (#3800114)
Josh Reddick is on one of his trademarked don't-forget-about-me hot streaks, but along with hitting .350 with good power, he's walked more than he's struck out in the first nine games. Not bad.

Jacobs continues to destroy the ball, but he also continues to strike out every time he doesn't destroy the ball. 13 ks in 36 ab (along w eight walks) and by my count a contact batting average over .600. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that's unsustainable.
   23. Darren Posted: April 21, 2011 at 07:43 PM (#3804634)
After today's blowout, Lars is now heating 320/477/400 with 15 BB and 8 K in 15 games. No, I didn't mix up slg and obp and no, I didn't mix up BB and K.

Hmmm.
   24. Dan Posted: April 21, 2011 at 08:18 PM (#3804683)
So Lars Anderson has turned into pre-power breakout Youkilis?

Also, I don't know how severe it was, but apparently Kalish hurt his shoulder making a diving catch. Hopefully it's nothing serious, but it still sucks.
   25. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: April 21, 2011 at 08:21 PM (#3804686)
Extra Bases says his arm is in a sling.
   26. Darren Posted: April 21, 2011 at 08:27 PM (#3804700)
No wonder he has no power! Oh, you mean Kalish.
   27. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: April 21, 2011 at 08:40 PM (#3804730)
Stupid pronouns. This is why Mrs. Blackburn used to yell at me about using them.
   28. Darren Posted: April 21, 2011 at 08:42 PM (#3804736)
Stupid pronouns. This is why Mrs. Blackburn used to yell at me about using them.


Using whom?
   29. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: April 22, 2011 at 01:15 AM (#3805068)
From PeteAbe a short whole ago;

Assistant GM Ben Cherington said the plan is to have Ryan Kalish checked out in Boston tomorrow. Initial reports are he did not dislocate the joint.


Note that it's Cheington using the pronoun "he", Jose renounces all pronouns.

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