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Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Lining Up The Minors - The “Huh” Edition

Without a true minor league season this year it is tough to get a feel for what is happening in Pawtucket.  Still some reports are coming out and it’s worth taking a look at what is in the pipeline;

1B - Triston Casas - The reports about Casas have been glowing.  He’s been getting playing time at Sim City and hitting bombs pretty regularly. He is one guy who has probably benefitted from all of this.  He’s not on the radar for 2021 yet but he’s looking at a AA start and a fast track if things go well.

2B - Jeter Downs - I haven’t read anything about Downs at Pawtucket.  He looks like a Jonathan Schoop/Brian Dozier type and at a position where the Sox don’t seem to have a lot of really strong options he’s got a path to Boston.  He’s another dude looking at AA next year but mid-season 2022 is probably reasonable for a first look.

3B - Bobby Dalbec - We can list him here for simplicity’s sake.  With Devers in place for the foreseeable future his long term placement is first base or maybe DH/3B with Devers at DH.  So far the good and bad of his track record have been on display with lots of strikeouts but some very impressive power on display.

SS - Nick Yorke - The Sox first pick in this year’s draft hasn’t gotten to play yet.  He was a controversial selection ranked far below the slot.  The Sox used the slot money they saved to sign third baseman Blaze Jordan which was a nice move as Jordan is highly regarded.  It was effectively the MLB equivalent of trading down in the draft to trade up elsewhere and Yorke was seen by some as the best high school hitter available.

OF - Jarred Duran - From what I’ve seen Duran has been impressive in Pawtucket.  Duran’s stock in trade is some dazzling speed and from what I’ve seen he’s shown a bit of pop in Pawtucket.  He’ll never be a slugger but in a perfect world there is a Jacoby Ellsbury look to him (not the 2011 edition but the regular version).

OF - Gilberto Jimenez - Another guy I haven’t seen anything new on and another guy with great wheels.  I saw him in Lowell last year and the dude is just stupid fast.  He’s only 19 but this is a tough year for him to lose.  As much as Casas has benefitted from this year I fear Jimenez may have suffered.  That first full season could have really helped his development but he’s young enough that he can bounce back.

OF - Jeisson Rosario - Another speed merchant it looks like.  This is one of the kids the Sox got in the Moreland deal and he slotted in immediately at #11 on the SoxProspects top 60 list.  For a team with not a lot of great outfield options he bears some watching.  Like Jimenez he’s missing his age 20 season which hurts.  One thought is I wonder if Dalbec might have some outfield potential.  He’s a good defensive third baseman so this may be a place for him also.

C - Deivy Grullon - He is literally at bat as I type.  He’s a fire hydrant built guy and his minor league track record shows solid power for a backstop (21 homers each of the last two seasons).  I don’t know anything about his defense (bloop RBI single to left as I type) so I can’t really offer anything there.

LHP - Jay Groome - FINALLY back on a mound in 2020.  Injuries have held him back since being drafted but he’s still young enough that it’s not a big problem.  It seems like he’s been pitching well on what little I’ve seen about him.

RHP - Noah Song - The Navy man actually might benefit from all of this.  As I understand he gets to reapply for release after two years and having this mess be one of the years may be about as good as the Sox could hope for.  I got to see him a bit last fall in the Olympic qualifiers and he’s got really impressive stuff.

Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: September 08, 2020 at 08:17 PM | 5 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Darren Posted: September 09, 2020 at 11:41 AM (#5975321)
I wouldn't be surprised to see Downs start at AAA or get a shot at the bigs quickly. He had reached AA in 2019 and would probably have started there (?), I think. If he did well, a 2021 bump to AAA and possibly MLB would make sense.

The big knock on Duran is that his defensive skills haven't matched his speed, although he's new to the outfield. I too feel good about him.
   2. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: September 09, 2020 at 11:48 AM (#5975323)
My WAG is that Downs starts at Portland in part to allow Worcester (that's going to take some gettin' used to) to have MLB ready depth and to give him time to ease in. I think the true prospects are going to probably start a bit lower down so as not to be pushed right out of the gate.

This assumes there IS a 2021 MiLB season which at this point...who the #### knows?
   3. villageidiom Posted: September 09, 2020 at 01:30 PM (#5975348)
I wouldn't be surprised to see Downs start at AAA or get a shot at the bigs quickly.
Are you saying Dustin Pedroia won't be back?
   4. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: September 09, 2020 at 01:46 PM (#5975351)
He's only got one year left. That timing works out good, Pedroia can start at second and lead off next year and then they can call Downs up for 2022. Pedey probably won't play all 162 next year (keep him around 140-145, he's getting older, so maybe they let Downs play some.
   5. Darren Posted: September 09, 2020 at 02:30 PM (#5975366)
Are you saying Dustin Pedroia won't be back?

No, no, no, I don't know what I was thinking. Pedroia will be back and putting up a 5-WAR season, leading the team to another championship.

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