Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Red Sox Prospecting

Now that baseball season has begun, I will provide a bi-weekly report on the top prospects in the Red Sox organization to look at whose hot and their newest cards. Today, I offer the five prospects that are off to the best starts in the 2010 season.

#1. Lars Anderson, 1B, AA Portland (.316 BA, .381 OPB, 1.013 OPS, 3 HR)

2010 Topps Pro Debut
After a disappointing 2009 season at AA Portland and a sub-par spring training performance with the big league club, Lars is off to a great start in 2010. Written off by some fans at the end of last year as a bust at 22 years-old, Lars has regained his form that made him Baseball America's #1 Prospect in the Red Sox organization before the 2009 season. If Lars maintains his hot bat, look to see him earn a promotion to AAA Pawtucket in May and get a look at Fenway sometime this year.

#2 Stolmy Pimentel, SP, High A Salem (2-0, 1.64 ERA, .158 BAA, 11 IP, 8 K)
2009 Bowman
Beginning his third professional season in the United States and still only 20 years-old, Stolmy continues to wow scouts and fans with his stuff and maturity on the mound. With a number of talented pitchers in the high minors, Pimentel is likely to spend most, of not all, of 2010 in Salem as the Red Sox continue to be patient with the young righty. However, if the Red Sox look to trade for a big slugger like Adrian Gonzalez in mid-season, Pimentel could very well be one of the prospects to go. In that case, he could see time at AA, AAA, or even get a Cup of Coffee in the majors by seasons end. The sky is the limit on Pimentel's potential, it is just a question of when.

#3 Oscar Tejada, SS, High A Salem (.375 BA, .381 OBP, .981 OPS, 2 HR, 3 SB)
2009 Bowman Sterling
Like his teammate Pimentel, Oscar Tejada is only 20 years-old and is dominating Carolina League competition. Often overlooked after a mediocre 2009 campaign in Single A Greenville and taking a back seat to fellow Red Sox minor league middle infielders like Jose Iglesias, Derrik Gibson, Yamaico Navarro, and Ryan Dent, Tejada has been the spark in Salem's line-up and attracted the eyes of a number of scouts. In a pure numbers game, it looks as through Tejada will remain in Salem for most of the year, unless, again, he is involved in an anticipated Red Sox blockbuster deal for Adrian Gonzalez.

#4 Casey Kelly, SP, AA Portland (0-0, 0.00 ERA, 5 IP, 4 K, .238 BAA)
2010 Topps Pro Debut
Despite his small sample size and restrictive pitch count, it is difficult to overlook Casey's ability and leave him off the list. At only 20 years-old, and with only half a season of professional pitching at Single A Greenville and High A Salem, Kelly is off to an impressive start against Eastern League batters. As the Red Sox take off some of Kelly's training wheels, look for him to continue to dominate and show why the Red Sox are so high on him.

#5 Anthony Rizzo, 1B, High A Salem (.313 BA, .370 OBP, .500 SLG, .870 OPS, 2 HR)
2009 Tristar PROjections
The only question for Rizzo is how long Anderson will continue to block his promotion to AA Portland. After an impressive 2009 season split between Greenville and Salem, Rizzo has kept up his impressive performance at the plate and in the field in 2010. Often overlooked by prospect evaluators, Rizzo is gaining fans and admirers with every at-bat.

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