Minor league thread 2023

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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He's got a pretty good ceiling. Remember last years amazing 14 k's and 32 swings and misses in 5.2 innings game?! And this year he's throwing even harder. Wouldn't be surprised if he becomes the (minor league) system's best lefty
When do you think he’s going to get moved to AAA?
 

TimScribble

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The numbers won’t show it but he has a bit of early command issues the last two games, especially against right handers. He leaves the pitches just a shade outside before really getting his feel. I could see them working on that more before a move. Be curious if the AAA bats will be more patient against his stuff.
 

JM3

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Some random early good news stats (all rankings from SoxProspects.com)...

AAA - Worcester
- David Hamilton (25, #26) leads the team with a .950 OPS in 79 PAs & 11 steals in 14 attempts.

AA - Portland
- Nick Yorke (21, #6) leads the team with an .860 OPS in 67 PAs, with 13 BBs & 14 Ks.
- Corey Rosier (23, not top 60, yet), acquired in the Jay Groome trade, is 2nd on the team with a .761 OPS, is hitting .319, & has 8 steals in 9 attempts
- Shane Drohan (24, #12), has been discussed in detail above, but 4-0, 0.78 ERA, 0.74 WHIP.
- Team is 12-5.

A+ - Greenville
- Chase Meidroth (21, #30) leads the team with a .925 OPS in 59 PAs with 18 BBs & 13 Ks.
- Marcelo Mayer (20, #1) hasn't been like amazing, but he's been quite competent - .812 OPS in 66 PAs with 11 BBs & 16 Ks.

A - Salem
- Miguel Bleis (19, #3) may be playing only ok so far, but his existence still makes me happy - .711 OPS 5BB/22Ks in 76 PAs, 5 steals in 6 attempts.

Some random bad news stats...

AAA - Worcester
- Team has a 6.05 ERA & the best pitcher has been I guess Ryan Sherriff?
- Team is 8-14.

AA - Portland
- Ceddanne Rafaela (22, #4), Niko Kavadas (24, #20) & Alex Binelas (23, #51) all strike out too much 29%/32%/36% respectively...but not nearly as much as Tyler McDonough (24, #29) who is strike out 39% of the time.

A+ - Greenville
- Eddinson Paulino (20, #10) has a .456 OPS in 68 PAs.
- Wikelman Gonzalez (21, #14) has made 4 starts totaling 8.2 IP, has walked 16 hitters & has a 15.58 ERA & a 3.00 WHIP.
- Team is 5-11.

A - Salem
- Luis Perales (20, #8) has allowed 12 hits & 8 walks in 7 IP over 3 starts, 10.29 ERA, 2.86 WHIP.
- Team is 9-8. I demand better.
 

RoDaddy

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Some random early good news stats (all rankings from SoxProspects.com)...

AA - Portland
- Ceddanne Rafaela (22, #4), Niko Kavadas (24, #20) & Alex Binelas (23, #51) all strike out too much 29%/32%/36% respectively...but not nearly as much as Tyler McDonough (24, #29) who is strike out 39% of the time.
Even more concerning to me than Ceddanne's K's are his lack of walks. Only 3 in 62 plate appearances for a guy who was supposed to be working on his overly-aggressive lack of patience approach as a number 1 priority
 

Fishy1

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Even more concerning to me than Ceddanne's K's are his lack of walks. Only 3 in 62 plate appearances for a guy who was supposed to be working on his overly-aggressive lack of patience approach as a number 1 priority
Compare that to Meidroth.

A+ - Greenville
- Chase Meidroth (21, #30) leads the team with a .925 OPS in 59 PAs with 18 BBs & 13 Ks.

- Marcelo Mayer (20, #1) hasn't been like amazing, but he's been quite competent - .812 OPS in 66 PAs with 11 BBs & 16 Ks.
18 BB's in 59 plate appearances is good for a laughably high 30% walk rate. His OBP is .525 so far.

So far in his minor league career he's got 32 BBs against 24 SO's.

I was curious because it's pretty rare these days to BB more than you strike out, even at low levels. Pedroia and Benintendi came immediately to mind as Red Sox minor leaguers who had achieved that. Pedroia only struck out 4 times in 107 PA at A+. That's nuts. Benintendi also only struck out 9 times in 155 PA at A+. Meidroth doesn't have that skill of avoiding K's. 22% SO rate so far in A+. JBJ was another guy (if you can believe it) who BB'ed more than he SO in A+, so take all of this with a grain of salt.
 

JM3

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Even more concerning to me than Ceddanne's K's are his lack of walks. Only 3 in 62 plate appearances for a guy who was supposed to be working on his overly-aggressive lack of patience approach as a number 1 priority
Agree. Was going to post his BB/K as a separate line item, but I ended up just rolling it in with the other high K rate guys instead.

The walks aren't particularly surprising, though...he had a 5.1% walk rate in AA last year, 4.6% so far this year, so pretty much right in line. His k-rate was only 19.8% last year, though. Average still up from .278 to .290 cuz BABIP. Slugging way down so far, though - .500 to .387. Who knows? It's early.
 

nighthob

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Even more concerning to me than Ceddanne's K's are his lack of walks. Only 3 in 62 plate appearances for a guy who was supposed to be working on his overly-aggressive lack of patience approach as a number 1 priority
The one good thing about the (fingers and toes crossed) resurgence or Duran is that it gives Little Rafi plenty of time to work on his approach at the plate. Same thing goes for Bleis. With an acceptable answer in CF there's no pressure to rush Bleis.
 

grimshaw

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Compare that to Meidroth.



18 BB's in 59 plate appearances is good for a laughably high 30% walk rate. His OBP is .525 so far.

So far in his minor league career he's got 32 BBs against 24 SO's.

I was curious because it's pretty rare these days to BB more than you strike out, even at low levels. Pedroia and Benintendi came immediately to mind as Red Sox minor leaguers who had achieved that. Pedroia only struck out 4 times in 107 PA at A+. That's nuts. Benintendi also only struck out 9 times in 155 PA at A+. Meidroth doesn't have that skill of avoiding K's. 22% SO rate so far in A+. JBJ was another guy (if you can believe it) who BB'ed more than he SO in A+, so take all of this with a grain of salt.
He's also a college guy like Beni was, so you would expect some of that polish in Low A. I bet he moves up quickly.
 

Heating up in the bullpen

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Even more concerning to me than Ceddanne's K's are his lack of walks. Only 3 in 62 plate appearances for a guy who was supposed to be working on his overly-aggressive lack of patience approach as a number 1 priority
Rafaela's on a 7-game hit streak, raising his line from .216 / .275 / .243 / .518 to .303 / .343 / .409 / .752. 12-29 with 3 2B, 1 HR, 1 BB, 7 K. The Ks can still come down, but that's a bit better than 25%. The BBs could still come up.
Isn't it cold up there in New England this time of year?
 

Apisith

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Yorke’s line is up to .274/.416/.532, OPSing .948. K/BB rates are both much improved compared to last year. How long until he’s back in top 100 lists?
 

AlNipper49

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He just won MilB hitter of the month for the Sox. 4th round 2Bman from the 2022 draft. Currently OPSing over 1
 

TimScribble

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Meidroth had a solid start last year as well after being drafted. Definitely curious how he shakes out in the new rankings.

Also, happy Shane Drohan day.
 

Apisith

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Wow, the best pitching prospect in the system. And he's only a year away from MLB. Well done to the pitching development team (also for Bello, Winckowski, Houck and Crawford).
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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I know that Mata has been struggling with his BB rate, but with Drohan emerging and some other starters in the mL system with some upside (Peralez, Cruz and Gonzalez) along with Murphy and Walter (both of whom, honestly I never saw as anything but potential filler--- although I thought the same of Winchowski who is looking incredibly valuable), does the overall outlook on the Sox system change at all? Mostly it's because of Drohan... but I believe Law didn't care for "the system" as a whole because of any pitching there.
Also does the development of Crawford and Winch start to make some people look at the mL pitchers any differently? As in.... "Winchowski never really showed anything in AAA to expect this.... maybe we should consider HOW they're developing rather than AAA results"? I don't really know about this stuff so seriously asking.
 

ZMart100

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I think Law weighs ceiling really heavily. Law wants to see potential aces. Drohan's stuff is good, particularly from the left but it's not wipe out as far as I can tell. He's more of a good pitch mix with good command guy. Drohan's uptick in velocity helps, but he doesn't look like he has a chance to be the next Pedro. So I'm not sure his step forward would do much for Law. Perales, Rodriguez-Cruz and Gonzalez were seen as upside guys before the season. I'm not sure they have done much to increase their stock so far this season, though it's early.

Winckowski has been good, but he's still a reliever. His results also look like they are helped by luck. I don't know that qualifies him as incredibly valuable.

I think overall there have been some steps forward and some steps back. I don't feel much differently about the system than I did before the season, though my expectations of some guys has changed.
 

The Gray Eagle

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Liu was a two-way player from Taiwan when we signed him, looks like he is only pitching now though.
https://sonsofsamhorn.net/index.php?threads/boston-red-sox-sign-two-way-player-liu-chih-jung-20-years-old.28642/#post-3613913
Great to see him do this. Sounds like he can still touch 98 with the fastball. He might be a late bloomer, as he didn't focus on pitching only until he signed here, and then had to deal with the pandemic in 2020, so he still hasn't pitched that many innings.

Rafaela and Kavadas each knocked in 2 runs in the game too:
https://www.bostonglobe.com/2023/05/05/sports/double-a-righty-cj-liu-throws-seven-inning-no-hitter-portland-sea-dogs/
 

LogansDad

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Mayer just passed 100 PA's on the season and is sporting a .393 OBP/.511 SLG/.903 OPS. He has 8 doubles and 3 home runs in 22 games to go along with 4 steal (2 CS). Color me impressed.

He has, however, made 6 errors and has a not awesome .909 fielding percentage. I do not know if most of those are fielding errors or throwing errors that an MLB caliber 1B may have helped him out on.
 

Manzivino

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Mayer just passed 100 PA's on the season and is sporting a .393 OBP/.511 SLG/.903 OPS. He has 8 doubles and 3 home runs in 22 games to go along with 4 steal (2 CS). Color me impressed.

He has, however, made 6 errors and has a not awesome .909 fielding percentage. I do not know if most of those are fielding errors or throwing errors that an MLB caliber 1B may have helped him out on.
Going through his gamelogs, the 3 in April are all listed as throwing errors though without video can’t say whose fault. He has an error in each of his last 3 games, 2 fielding and one a missed catch.
 

LogansDad

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I know I got scoffed at a bit before the season, but if he keeps this up I don't see how he isn't on something resembling the J-Rod track.

He's making a mockery of A+, and it feels like he will be moving to Portland very soon. I expect him to be there the rest of the year, and probably see some struggles as it is probably the biggest jump outside of AAA to MLB, but assuming he doesn't pee down his leg (and gets the defense under control) I don't see any reason not to give him a look in Spring Training next year.
 

BigSoxFan

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I know I got scoffed at a bit before the season, but if he keeps this up I don't see how he isn't on something resembling the J-Rod track.

He's making a mockery of A+, and it feels like he will be moving to Portland very soon. I expect him to be there the rest of the year, and probably see some struggles as it is probably the biggest jump outside of AAA to MLB, but assuming he doesn't pee down his leg (and gets the defense under control) I don't see any reason not to give him a look in Spring Training next year.
Hope you’re right. Would be pretty exciting to see him join Yorke and Rafaela in AA. Also, looks like the SS job in Portland is pretty wide open. If he has a strong May, I wonder if they would consider a promotion in the June timeframe.
 

brienc

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Hope you’re right. Would be pretty exciting to see him join Yorke and Rafaela in AA. Also, looks like the SS job in Portland is pretty wide open. If he has a strong May, I wonder if they would consider a promotion in the June timeframe.
Hopefully Mayer’s promotion can wait until after Greenville plays in Brooklyn 6/6-11, for selfish reasons.
 

AlNipper49

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My best guess it that they will let him cook at A+ for a bit. Portland has an absolute glut of IF prospects (Rafaela, Yorke, Lugo) and it feels to me like the Sox are better served getting all 4 as much regular playing time as possible. Bienlas is also there at 3b, though he's playing like shit at the moment.
 

BigSoxFan

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My best guess it that they will let him cook at A+ for a bit. Portland has an absolute glut of IF prospects (Rafaela, Yorke, Lugo) and it feels to me like the Sox are better served getting all 4 as much regular playing time as possible. Bienlas is also there at 3b, though he's playing like shit at the moment.
Is Lugo a real prospect? See that he has 1 walk in 75 plate appearances. I agree that letting a prospect have a nice stretch can be beneficial but I’d also like to see Mayer get to AA at some point before the early summer since that is a tough jump to make. Will be interesting to follow in any event.
 

AlNipper49

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I'm not a prospect expert but I think that Lugo is probably on some top 20 prospect lists and showed up in Red Sox camp this year. I'm not certain that he has a horribly high ceiling, but he could definitely earn himself a role on a ML team at some point. His existence probably wouldn't be the main variable in not calling up Mayer sooner than later, but it's definitely something that I think they'd be considerating at least as far as the timing goes. He feels to me like minor league depth that could be (a lesser) part of a package if it came to that.

He's also moved to 3B, which I didn't realize until I googled him just now.... so maybe including him in my list wasn't good.
 

amfox1

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A bit of early season movement is coming today in the Red Sox system, with C Nathan Hickey and IF Chase Meidroth expected to move from High-A Greenville to Double-A Portland. Meidroth - a 4th rounder in ‘22- is hitting .338/.495/.459 w/more BBs than Ks. He needs to be challenged.

Alex Speier
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Hickey, a ‘21 5th rounder - is hitting .294/.402/.588 for Greenville. He spent about half of last year in Greenville. Like Meidroth, his advanced approach likely requires the challenge of the upper levels. Portland’s staff also has two catching instructors.
 

simplicio

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Love to see Meidroth moving quickly. And more catching coming up is always welcome.
 

Diamond Don Aase

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Alex Speier
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A bit of early season movement is coming today in the Red Sox system, with C Nathan Hickey and IF Chase Meidroth expected to move from High-A Greenville to Double-A Portland. Meidroth - a 4th rounder in ‘22- is hitting .338/.495/.459 w/more BBs than Ks. He needs to be challenged.

Alex Speier
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Hickey, a ‘21 5th rounder - is hitting .294/.402/.588 for Greenville. He spent about half of last year in Greenville. Like Meidroth, his advanced approach likely requires the challenge of the upper levels. Portland’s staff also has two catching instructors.
Hickey has failed to catch a single basestealer in 37 attempts this season. Portland could add a third catching instructor, they would still be likely to have as much success as a dietician in a cupcake factory.
 

The Gray Eagle

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Chad Jennings in The Athletic declares Portland to be Prospect Central:
https://theathletic.com/4504461/2023/05/10/red-sox-portland-double-a-prospects/

It was time to challenge him, and so on Tuesday, the Red Sox promoted Meidroth to Double A.
The only problem — where to play him?
It’s a good problem to have, because Portland has become the epicenter of the Red Sox minor league system. Of the organization’s top 30 prospects according to SoxProspects.com, a third play for the Sea Dogs (so do numbers 31, 34 and 35). That includes three of the top five. And perhaps soon, four of the top five. Tuesday night’s Double-A bench included arguably the system’s top catching prospect (Nathan Hickey), a third-round pick who stole 21 bases last year (Tyler McDonough), the guy who holds High-A Greenville’s home run record (Tyler Dearden), plus Meidroth, who likely will make his debut on Wednesday. Portland’s rotation includes the system’s breakout pitching prospect (Shane Drohan), while a handful of the organization’s most notable young relievers (Luis Guerrero, Ryan Fernandez, Theo Denlinger, Ryan Zeferjahn) vie for key innings out of the bullpen.
At 19-9, the Sea Dogs have the best record in the Eastern League, and in the Red Sox minor league system.
Marcelo Mayer may force his way there too, if he keeps it up.
and it may be only a matter of time before the system’s top prospect, Marcelo Mayer, joins them. Mayer, 20, had 16 hits in six games for Greenville last week. Those hits included three homers and six doubles. A source familiar with the team’s thinking said the Red Sox were not exactly on the verge of promoting Mayer to Portland, but he was at least making them think about it.
“Definitely pushing!” the source said.
Some players will be moved around defensively to add versatility:
Farm director Brian Abraham said the Red Sox plan to keep giving Meidroth playing time at second and third, and might occasionally play him at shortstop. Lugo has already started getting some reps in the outfield to improve his own versatility (which creates further room for Meidroth).
But the outfield is also packed. Ceddanne Rafaela, a top-five organizational prospect, is the regular center fielder, but McDonough and Phillip Sikes (Nos. 31 and 28 on the SoxProspects list) also need center field reps, and those two can’t just slide into the corners every night because regular right fielder Corey Rosier has earned everyday playing time with an .861 OPS and an Eastern League-leading 16 stolen bases (he stole another one on Tuesday). McDonough and Rafaela also moonlight in the infield, while Scott can play some first base if necessary, and Dearden (a DH and left fielder by trade) has been taking grounders at first base as well.
The team could eventually clear some of the logjam by promoting Rafaela to Triple-A Worcester, but Rafaela — an elite defender with great speed and surprising power — is still trying to improve his plate discipline and strike zone awareness.
Good luck to these guys at the proving ground.
If A ball is the filter, Double A is the proving ground. Of course, not every Sea Dogs player will pass the test, but those who do will put themselves on the big league radar. And right now, the Portland roster is loaded with guys trying to do just that.
 

Merkle's Boner

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Gonna be interesting to see how this logjam at Portland plays out. if the FO can make the right decisions on who to trade and who to keep, assuming we don't keep them all, this could really set us up for the next cycle of prospects, or reinforce the big club.
 

zenax

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Chad Jennings in The Athletic declares Portland to be Prospect Central:
I thought it had been quite a while since Double-A took over from Triple-A as the Prospect Center; Triple-A has more or less devolved into a place for substitutes for ailing MLB players and the place to sent MLBers on the IL. Also, it is used for acquired palyers who have had some MLB experience but for whom there is no room on the active roster and for players needing to be bumped up because a prospect is being moved up to Double-A.
 

AlNipper49

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Gonna be interesting to see how this logjam at Portland plays out. if the FO can make the right decisions on who to trade and who to keep, assuming we don't keep them all, this could really set us up for the next cycle of prospects, or reinforce the big club.
Maybe the Sox look at this as a feature rather than a bug. Positional flexibility being systemic rather than individual is a cool concept with players under team control for atleast another half decade.

As far as Hickey goes, given his age it's my best guess that he's on their short list of in-emergency-break glass options at the ML level. Also, given his age and that he's not really tracking to be a starting C type prospect maybe if they don't break glass he'll be a better trade throw in with some AA reps. If Wong continues to prove himself they don't really need someone like Hickey kicking around when there are waiver wire options better from a long-term backup perspective.
 

LogansDad

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Mayer has sat two day in a row, anyone with any inside info? My semester is over and I'd like to spend more time watching the prospects play.