Boston Red Sox 2018 Top 50 Prospects (and baseball cards!)

Portland Sea Dogs Michael Chavis
Portland Sea Dogs Michael Chavis takes a mighty cut at Dunkin’ Donuts Park on July 3, 2017 vs. Hartford Yard Goats.  Photo credit: Scott Greene

Boston Red Sox Top 50 Prospects for 2018

Seems like it was just yesterday when Boston boasted one of the best farm systems in all of baseball. They were loaded! The names rolled sweetly off your tongue like the future was right there for the taking – Yoan Moncada, Michael Kopech, Anderson Espinoza, Mauricio Dubon, Manuel Margot, Logan Allen, Shaun Anderson, Gerson Bautista – shall I keep going? You never knew just how true it was when Cinderella sang “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone).” Ah yes, it’s true. It’s damn true.

This Red Sox farm is not one of the best in baseball anymore, but I don’t believe it’s one of the worst either.  Despite the “Gutting According to Dombrowski,” my best assessment is that overall they’re around 20th or 21st, at the top of the lower third.  BaseballHQ.com’s 2018 Minor League Baseball Analyst puts Boston at 27th overall with a D+ grade, only above Kansas City, New York Mets, and Seattle.  I do not have them that low and would certainly rank them ahead of San Francisco, Los Angeles Angels, Miami and Baltimore.

There is still a lot of very good talent.  Other than a few, they’re just not Top 100 overall prospects.  I do have seven 2017 MLB Draft picks in my Top 50 and an eighth was considered.  Believe it or not I have three 29-year-olds.  I know several of my prospecting friends, dynasty league combatants and Prospects1500 colleagues will probably rake me over the coals for that but I still believe in these “kids” and you’ll find out why as you digest my list.

First off, let’s take a quick peek at Boston’s most recent top prospect graduates to the majors, in part so I can share with you some of my favorite baseball cards. Yeah, cheap plug for my collection whenever I get a chance to.  They’re all part of my personal collection and for the most part NFT, NFS.  That’s hobby lingo for not for trade; not for sale.

Andrew Benintendi (678 MLB AB, 2nd in 2017 AL Rookie of the Year voting)
Red Sox prospects cards

Rafael Devers (222 MLB AB in 58 games, including 10 HR in his rookie season)
Red Sox prospects cards

Deven Marrero (236 MLB AB over last 3 seasons, only .208 career AVG, but a nice card!)
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Now, time for my Red Sox Top 50 (and more) prospects.  Definitely let me know who you think I may have too high, too low, or maybe not even on the list.  Please comment below or hit me up on Twitter at @Scotty_Ballgame.

Prospects1500 Tiers:
Tier 1: Players with high expectations of both making the majors and playing at an All-Star level for a number of years
Tier 2: Players with an above average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 3: Players with an average expectation of making the majors and being a solid contributor
Tier 4: Players who have the potential of making the majors, or have high likelihood of making the majors but providing minimal impact (e.g. middle reliever, low-ceiling UT guys)
Tier 5: Players who are worth keeping an eye on, but likely to never make a team’s 40-man roster


Tier 1:

None

Tier 2:
1. Michael Chavis, 3B
Age: 22
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
Red Sox prospects cards
Chavis was named Boston’s minor league Offensive Player of the Year. Is Devers blocking him at 3B in Boston? Time will tell but Chavis really came into his own in 2017, slamming 31 HR and knocking in 94 between High-A Salem and the AA Sea Dogs. He was a Carolina League All Star after his first half, slashing .318/.388/.641 (1.029 OPS) for Salem. He came back down to earth with the promotion to Portland going .250/.310/.492 but still went deep 14 times in 67 games. I expect him to start 2018 in Portland and if he keeps hitting for power may get a look at Triple-A, if not The Fens in Boston.

2. Jay Groome, LHP
Age: 19
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Red Sox prospects cards
There was some injury concern in the Red Sox system last year when Groome missed some time, but he’s on track for a full and healthy 2018. After only 3 games and 11 IP in Lowell, the lefty was promoted to Greenville (A) where he did struggle. I’m not jazzed about the 6.70 ERA and 1.56 WHIP in 44.1 IP but I do like the 58 K. Boston’s 2016 1st rounder will likely spend most of 2018, if not all, in A ball between Greenville and High-A Salem. Could be a 2-3 starter but I would say ETA 2020 at the earliest.

Tier 3:
3. Josh Ockimey, 1B
Age: 22
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
Red Sox prospects cards
Ockimey is slowly becoming one of my favorite bats to watch in the Red Sox minor leagues. He broke out in 2016 at Greenville and so many more eyes were on him in 2017 which he split between A+ and AA. After a very solid season slashing .274/.385/.436/.820 with 14 HR and 74 RBI, look for Ockimey to break with Portland (AA). With Mitch Moreland only signed for 2 years, the time for Ockimey in Boston could be as soon as 2020.

4. Bryan Mata, RHP
Age: 18
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
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I’ll be honest, I wasn’t even in on Mata at this time last year. Then I started seeing his name pop up on Twitter and he started shooting up prospect lists during the second half. Still only 18, this January 2016 International signee spent 2017 at Greenville. He certainly was not lights out but was good, with 3.74 ERA, 1.31 WHIP and almost a K per inning (74 in 77 IP). I think he’s probably ticketed for Greenville again and could definitely get a promotion to A-Advanced Salem. Mata is likely available in many dynasty leagues. Go draft him right now if you can. He won’t be there in dynasty leagues once the season begins.

5. Tanner Houck, RHP
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: Short Season A (Lowell)
Red Sox prospects cards
The Red Sox 1st round pick in 2017, Houck saw action in 10 games at Short Season Lowell Spinners. If he spends more time in Lowell this year before hopefully getting the promotion to A level Greenville, I’ll definitely be making the short drive from Western Mass to Eastern Mass to scout him in person. The 6’5″ 220 pound righthander has the talent to be a top of the rotation starter. Houck held opponents to a .234 average in 22.1 IP with 25 K. If you collect cards like I do, buy some Houcks now before his star rises and his prices start shooting up.

6. Mike Shawaryn, RHP
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
Red Sox prospects cards
I admit, I have a man crush on Shawaryn. That happens a lot when I see a career 11.4 K/9 and decent control (1.23 WHIP) over two MILB seasons. Do not sleep on this kid. 169 K in 134.2 IP for Greenville/Salem. There’s no reason Shawaryn should spend most of 2018 with Double-A Portland and when he’s pitching in Hartford against the Yard Goats, I’ll be there!

7. Sam Travis, 1B
Age: 24
2017 Highest Level: MLB
Red Sox prospects cards
Travis is solid. Bottom line. He’s going to be a good major league player. Will it be at 1B for the Red Sox? Possibly, although as I just mentioned above, I think Ockimey is the Red Sox “1B of the future.” It was awesome to see Travis slam a game tying HR to straight away centerfield with 2 outs in the 9th inning (which I called) in Dunedin, FL during Spring Training 2016. I expect to see Travis back in the majors this year, spelling 1B/DH when Moreland/Hanley need time off.

8. Cole Brannen, OF
Age: 19
2017 Highest Level: Short Season A (Lowell)
Red Sox prospects cards
Only 18 this past season, Boston’s 2017 2nd round draft selection got into 39 games for the Gulf Coast League Red Sox (Rookie ball) and then 3 games for Short Season Lowell. The speedy outfielder has plenty of time to build on his hit tool and Brannen should be a big part of the Lowell Spinners lineup in 2018. Go ahead and gamble on him in the middle rounds of your dynasty league drafts.

9. Lorenzo Cedrola, OF
Age: 20
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Cedrola was THE biggest riser on my Midseason Red Sox Top 50 list this past August compared to where he was ranked at this time last year. Some sites will of course be higher on players than other sites, but I’ll give a shout out to Ben Carsley of Baseball Prospectus who says Cedrola may be the third or fourth best prospect in the system, although he’s ranked 9th on his list too. I’m very happy with his 2017 line at Greenville (A) as a 19-year-old, .285/.322/.387, 4 HR, 19 SB in 92 games. Could be in my Red Sox Top 5 at this time next year. The future is bright for Cedrola and I can only ask Topps and Bowman to make sure he’s in the 2018 products!

10. Jalen Beeks, LHP
Age: 24
2017 Highest Level: Triple-A (Pawtucket)
I’m definitely excited about Beeks, maybe more so than many other Red Sox prospector. The lefty, Boston’s minor league Pitcher of the Year, played at Arkansas with Benintendi. He was added to the 40-man roster to be protected from the Rule 5 Draft, and he’s coming off a very good 49.1 IP at AA and decent numbers in 95.2 IP at AAA. Going 5-1 with a 2.19 ERA and 58 K for Portland earned him a promotion to Pawtucket, where he went 6-7 with a 3.86 ERA and 97 K in 17 games started. Overall through 145 IP he held batters to a .224 batting average against clip while posting 9.6 K/9.  As with Cedrola, come on Topps/Bowman. Give us some Beeks cards!

11. Alex Scherff, RHP
Age: 19
2017 Highest Level: Did Not Pitch
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Boston’s 5th round pick in 2017 out of Colleyville Heritage High School in Texas, Scherff has some high expectations coming into 2018. He didn’t pitch professionally last year after being drafted so expect him to begin this season in Rookie ball. He’s said to have electric stuff including one of the best changeups coming out of the 2017 MLB Draft. I have not seen him pitch yet, but definitely will when he eventually makes it to Lowell.
I still love Alex’s tweet from last June 13:

12. Jake Thompson, RHP
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: Short Season A (Lowell)
Thompson is the 4th 2017 draft pick in the first 12 players I’ve ranked. The 23-year-old Thompson, from Oregon State, debuted last season in Short Season Lowell. He only made it into 7 games (all starts), going 11.1 innings and not more than 2 IP in any of them. He’s about a K per inning pitcher and let’s see what he does with his first full season in pro ball in 2018.

13: Bobby Dalbec, 3B
Age: 22
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Red Sox prospects cards
Dalbec is a power bat but he struggled in Greenville last year. Coming off a stellar debut in 2016 at Short Season Lowell where he slashed .386/.427/.674/1.101 in only 34 games and 132 AB, he only hit .246 with 132 strikeouts in his sophomore campaign. Still he managed to swat 13 bombs and Red Sox brass won’t rush him with Devers and Chavis ahead on the depth chart.

Tier 4:
14. Travis Lakins, RHP
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
Drafted in the 6th round in 2015, Lakins had a rough 2016 in High-A Salem but during the first half of 2017 there he absolutely killed it. 5-0 with a 2.61 ERA in 7 starts, with 43 K in 38 IP. This earned him a promotion to Double-A Portland but the next level bats beat him up again to the tune of an 0-4 record, 6.23 ERA and 1.81 WHIP in 8 starts, with only 19 K in 30.1 IP. It was like a tale of two seasons in one. I saw him in Hartford on July 3 which ended up being his final start of the year due to injury as he left after only 2.2 IP. He’ll likely be a Sea Dog again to start 2018.

15. C.J. Chatham, SS
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Red Sox prospects cards
At least to me, Chatham has quietly, similarly to Mata, climbed the prospect ladder over the last two years since he was drafted in the 2nd round in 2016, even though he lost most of last year due to hamstring injuries. He only saw 7 games of action and didn’t play after July 17, but he made the most of his only playing time going 6-19 with 1 HR, 5 RBI. If healthy he should pick up where he left off in Single-A Greenville.

16. Brian Johnson, LHP
Age: 27
2017 Highest Level: MLB
Red Sox prospects cards
It seems like Johnson has been around for a long time. Oh yeah, he has. A 2012 1st rounder, Johnson doesn’t have anything left to prove in the Minors as he’s already established he can succeed at the major league level. The highlight of his career so far came back on May 27 when he tossed a brilliant 9 inning, complete game shutout against Seattle at Fenway. Still only 31.1 IP at the MLB level is why Johnson is still prospect eligible and on my list. Johnson received the 2017 Lou Gorman Award, which is given annually to a Red Sox minor leaguer who has demonstrated dedication and perseverance in overcoming obstacles while working his way to the major league team.  I’m afraid he might be one of those AAA rotation guys that just gets called to the bigs when there’s an injury or spot start needed.

17. Roniel Raudes, RHP
Age: 20
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
Red Sox prospects cards
The Roniel Raudes star dimmed a bit in 2017 following his stellar Red Sox Minor League Pitcher of the Year 2016 campaign. Boston kept him at High-A Salem all season and he made 23 starts, although A+ hitters knocked him around with 134 hits over his 116 IP. That of course blew up his WHIP to 1.53 which has to be improved if he hopes to take the next step to AA Portland.

18. Darwinzon Hernandez, LHP
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Hernandez should be one of your deep dynasty league stashes this season, coming off a solid 2017 in A ball. Not overpowering, the Venezuelan lefty whiffed 116 in 103.1 IP in 23 games started. A 4.03 ERA and 1.30 were otherwise pedestrian, I would not be surprised if Boston pushed him up a level to challenge him with Double-A hitters at some point this year.

19. Danny Diaz, SS
Age: 17
2017 Highest Level: N/A
Diaz was one of two top notch International signings last season. Boston’s other high profile July signing, 17-year-old Daniel Flores, was one of MLB Pipeline’s top International prospects but passed away in November after a rare and aggressive form of testicular cancer. Diaz hasn’t yet made his stateside professional debut but according to SoxProspects.com, he has a “good offensive approach for his age, above-average power potential” but “below-average speed.” Look for him to get things going in Rookie ball in 2018.

20. Brett Netzer, 2B
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Red Sox prospects cards
Netzer isn’t the toolsiest player, doesn’t have power, but he hits. The 2017 3rd rounder debuted in Short Season Lowell, hit .317 in 22 games (82 AB) and then continued hitting at A-level Greenville, batting .260 in 26 games. He also added 5 SB in 6 attempts. I don’t want to draw comparisons but he could be another Brock Holt-type player.

21. Dedgar Jimenez, LHP
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
Jimenez was another one of those players not on my August Midseason Top 50, but then I got to see him pitch in Hartford on August 31 and he hurled a gem – 5.1 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 3 K, lowering his AA ERA to 2.91. Overall between High-A and Double-A he was 15-3 with a 3.02 ERA. Not a huge strikeout guy (118 in 146 IP), Jimenez should continue with the Sea Dogs this year and maybe get bumped up to the PawSox at some point.

22. Joan Martinez, RHP
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Martinez was signed out of the Dominican Republic in January 2016. He pitched well in Boston’s Dominican Summer League that year. Then he split 2017 between Lowell and Greenville. He can get his fastball up into the mid 90’s and complements that with a solid slider. At this point going into 2018 Martinez is most likely destined to be a bullpen arm as he hasn’t started any games to this point.

23. Bobby Poyner, LHP
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
Poyner was a 2017 surprise and that earned him a spot on my late September piece, Red Sox Prospects not in my Top 50, but should be! The 25-year-old put up some great numbers between Salem and Portland, highlighted by 15 saves in 16 opportunities. Add to that an eye popping 84 K in 60.1 IP, 1.49 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, and Poyner is one of those great stories (14th round pick in 2015 out of the swamps of Gator Nation, FL) who just might make a bold statement and get to the bigs this coming season.

24. Tyler Hill, OF
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
I’ve been keeping tabs on Hill for a couple years now (he was a 2014 19th round pick) but when @ProspectJesus Ralph Lifshitz dropped his name to me a few weeks back I knew he had to get into my Top 25. Hill really burst onto the Sox prospect map in 2017 slashing .272/.342/.390/.732 in Greenville, with 9 HR and 57 RBI to go along with 42 SB! Expect another step up the ladder to High-A Salem.

25a. Austin Maddox, RHP
Age: 26
2017 Highest Level: MLB
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25b. Ben Taylor, RHP
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: MLB
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I group Maddox and Taylor together as I view them as similar major league bullpen arms. At this point I’m not sure if they’ll be fantasy relevant and get you a bunch of Holds as they may be used in lower leverage situations. Maddox just might get some of those chances as his 2017 MLB debut was very good, only giving up 1 ER in 17.1 IP. On the other hand, in the same exact 17.1 MLB IP, Taylor gave up 10 ER but did strike out 18.

26. Daniel Gonzalez, RHP
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
Here is one Red Sox prospect who I am likely higher on than most other lists/rankings out there. Some say he’s 21 and too old for A+. I say he’s ONLY 21. Sure he’s been around since 2013 when he was signed out of the Dominican Republic and spent two years in Rookie ball. Then 3 years in Lowell, Greenville and lastly High-A Salem from 2015-2017 brings us to his 22-year-old season in 2018. If he can follow up what he did in 2017 (12-2, 2.78 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, 9.0 K/9) then I will not be surprised to see him contributing (some starts, some relief appearances) in Portland, with an outside shot to reach Pawtucket this year.

27. Roldani Baldwin, C
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
The 21-year-old Baldwin has 4 seasons under his belt and looks to improve his backstop skills this year to add to his bat-first approach and repertoire. In a nice complement of 95 games at Greenville he had 14 HR, 66 RBI, 180 total bases and slashed .274/.310/.489/.800.

28. Pedro Castellanos, 1B
Age: 20
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Castellanos spent most of 2017 with the Gulf Coast League Red Sox, getting the call to play in 2 games for Greenville (A). His 2017: 2 HR, 31 RBI, .338 AVG, .382 OBP, .456 SLG and .839 OPS. It’s a good bet he spends 2018 in Greenville with a shot to make A+ Salem.

29. Jake Cosart, RHP
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
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Boston’s 3rd round pick in 2014, Cosart started to shine with AA Portland last season. After splitting 2016 between A and A+, he tossed 49.1 IP in 2017 exclusively from the bullpen. He continues to work on a full arsenal of pitches (94-97 mph fastball, curveball, splitter, changeup) and could be a 6th, 7th, 8th inning option in Boston’s future.

30. Chad De La Guerra, SS
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
De La Guerra heads into 2018 as a non-roster invitee to Spring Training. Coming off a solid 2017 with Salem/Portland, he plays both middle infield spots and could fill a bench/utility role in the future but likely won’t be an everyday MLB player.

31. Williams Jerez, LHP
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: Triple-A (Pawtucket)
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Jerez is on the cusp of making it to the bigs. He was an Eastern League All Star in 2017 with a 2-0 record, 4 saves (in 8 chances) and 47 K in 51.1 IP with Portland before getting promoted to Pawtucket. He’s a bullpen only guy and could have some limited fantasy value similar to Maddox and Taylor if he ever gets those Holds chances in the bigs. That might happen with a September call up.

32. Hector Velazquez, RHP
Age: 29
2017 Highest Level: MLB
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Velazquez is the first of three 29-year-olds on my list. I know, pretty crazy, right? To be honest I’d probably have listed Velazquez a bit lower in Tier 5 but he’s seen time in the majors and likely will get another chance, so that alone lands him in Tier 4. Following 7 seasons in the Mexican League he had a very good first season stateside with Triple-A Pawtucket going 8-4 with a 2.20 ERA in 102 IP, all starts (19). He was up and down from AAA to Boston but did pitch well in his 8 games (3 starts) for the Sox. Has an outside shot to break camp with the team but I’d bet he goes to Pawtucket.

33a. Tzu-Wei Lin, IF
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: MLB
33b. Josh Tobias, 2B
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
33c. Marco Hernandez, IF
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: MLB
Another few players who I view very close in abilities to each other, thus the a/b/c rank. Lin hit very well to start the year in AA and actually got the major league call up in June and saw 25 games of action. He was sent down to Triple-A for the remainder of the year. Tobias, the Clay Buchholz return, put up very good stats in High-A Salem (.345/.412/.494/.907) in 21 games which earned him a promotion to Double-A, where he spent the bulk of his 2017. Hernandez also saw time in Boston in 2016 and 2017 but still has only 109 AB at the MLB level. He could be your Red Sox starting 2B if Dustin Pedroia is not ready for Opening Day. Regardless, I see Lin, Tobias and Hernandez as bottom of the order, bench player major leaguers at best.

34. Hildemaro Requena, RHP
Age: 20
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Requena had a great season at Greenville (A): 11-3, 1.98 ERA, 1.08 WHIP in 32 games (8 starts), 95.1 IP and 84 K. Move him up to High-A Salem please!

35. Kyle Martin, RHP
Age: 27
2017 Highest Level: MLB
27-year-old, made his MLB debut in 2017. Another exclusive bullpen arm, had 50 K in 53.2 IP at Pawtucket, but an ugly 1.53 WHIP in Triple-A and an even worse 1.71 in only 2 games for the Red Sox.

36. Ty Buttrey, RHP
Age: 24
2017 Highest Level: Triple-A (Pawtucket)
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Buttrey, a 2012 4th round pick, finally has some value following his switch to the bullpen in 2016. Last year his fastball started missing bats and he got a chance to close out some games for Portland, going 4-for-4 in save opportunities. My take is along the same lines as Maddox/Taylor/Jerez – a potential middle-to-late inning Holds RP.

37. Bryce Brentz, OF
Age: 29
2017 Highest Level: MLB
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I think Brentz is a great guy, and loved seeing him win the 2017 Triple-A HR Derby, but you can’t convince me he’s going to be more than one of those AAAA hitters. He’s in Tier 4 and not Tier 5 because he could get some more MLB service time but I don’t think he sticks, even as a 4th or 5th OF.

Tier 5:
38. Tate Matheny, OF
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
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This 2015 4th rounder has some power and speed and has notched a couple straight solid campaigns in A (Full, 2016) and A (Advanced, 2017). From 5 HR, 52 RBI, 21 SB for Greenville two years ago, to 7 HR, 46 RBI, 175 TB (13th in the Carolina League) and 27 SB last year for Salem (named Boston’s minor league Baserunner of the Year), look for Mike Matheny‘s son to spend 2018 at Double-A Portland.

39. Chandler Shepherd, RHP
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: Triple-A (Pawtucket)
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Shepherd was added to the 40-man roster, but I’m not confident that he’ll get to Boston, thus my Tier 5 ranking. I just don’t see anything overly exciting in his profile, even though I love those high K/9 pitchers. (10.3 in Pawtucket in 2017) Otherwise I can’t look past the 1-5 record, 4.07 ERA and 1.29 WHIP. Just doesn’t stand out to me.

40. Everlouis Lozada, 3B
Age: 19
2017 Highest Level: Short Season A (Lowell)
I’m excited about Lozada but need another year before I bump him up into Tier 3 or 4. He hit .314 in Rookie ball before getting the call to Short Season Lowell. Such a small sample size but in 3 games there he was 7-12. He should spend a full short season in Lowell and it will be interesting to see where he lands from April through mid-June.

41. Nick Duron, RHP
Age: 21
2017 Highest Level: Short Season A (Lowell)
2015 31st round pick, missed 2016 due to injury. Solid 2017 in Lowell with 12 games started, 3.35 ERA, 1.10 WHIP in 53.2 IP.

42. Santiago Espinal, SS
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: A (Greenville)
Espinal is another one of my deep, dynasty league sleepers, but only if your league rosters 750-800+ minor leaguers. 2017 slashline of .280/.334/.358/.692 with 4 HR, 46 RBI and 20 SB!

43. Esteban Quiroz, IF
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: N/A (Mexican League)
Signed out of the Mexican League this past November, Quiroz could be a sneaky deep, dynasty league pick so don’t forget this name. He can play 2B, SS, and 3B and has some nice power potential. He’s participating in the Red Sox Rookie Development program and has an invite to big league camp.

44. Jeremy Barfield, OF
Age: 29
2017 Highest Level: Triple-A (Pawtucket)
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You have to be rooting for @BarfontheField! Call him a minor league journeyman since 2008 who’s toiled between AA, AAA and even a portion of 2015 in the Mexican League, didn’t even play in 2016, to now have a legitimate shot with Boston because they are desperate for power bats. You can’t shake your head at 27 HR, 75 RBI at AA Portland last year, and then he goes 5-11 in 3 games for AAA Pawtucket, adding another HR. I say #GiveBarfieldAChance!

45. Zach Schellenger, RHP
Age: 22
2017 Highest Level: Rookie (Gulf Coast League)
2017 6th round pick out of Seton Hall, logged only 3 IP in 3 games for GCL Red Sox rookie league.

46a. Danny Mars, OF
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
46b. Aneury Tavarez, OF
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: Triple-A (Pawtucket)
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Mars was very good in 2017, another Sea Dog representative at the Eastern League All Star Classic. Tavarez was selected in the December 2016 Rule 5 Draft by Baltimore but returned to Boston after failed trade attempts. He had an injury plagued 2017 following a solid 2016 between AA/AAA. Both of these outfielders have some speed and contact tools, but won’t be anything more than part-time, fill-in roster call ups at best.

47. Tyler Esplin, OF
Age: 18
2017 Highest Level: Rookie (Gulf Coast League)
7th round draft pick (2017) got into 22 games in Rookie ball, notching 4 2B, 2 HR, 11 RBI and slashed .271/.340/.388/.729.

48. Kyle Hart, LHP
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
Red Sox prospects cards
Spent 2017 between Greenville (A) and Salem (A+), starting 19 games, hurling 117 IP and striking out 109. If he can build on that 2018 could be an exciting one for the 2016 19th round pick out of Indiana.

49. Matthew Kent, LHP
Age: 25
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
Boston selected Kent in the 13th round in 2015. After 2 seasons in Lowell, Greenville and making it to High-A Salem in 2016, Kent spent all of 2017 in Salem and was 3rd in the Carolina League with 142 K (in 164 IP). The 25-year-old Texas native should be wearing a Sea Dogs uniform in 2018.

50. Trenton Kemp, OF
Age: 22
2017 Highest Level: A+ (Salem)
.316/.369/.504/.874 at High-A Salem in 2017. Only 33 games there so he may start 2018 back at the same level.

and one more because I can…
51. Trey Ball, LHP
Age: 23
2017 Highest Level: Double-A (Portland)
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Ball initially did not make my list but I have to give him one more chance. He’s a former 1st round pick (2013)! Can we really look past the bad year he put up in Portland (7-12, 5.27 ERA, 1.75 WHIP) and expect an improvement? I don’t think Boston would demote a 23-year-old back to High-A so another shot at Double-A in 2018 might be Ball’s last call.

Others considered:
Nick Lovullo, 2B
Jake Romanski, C
Kervin Suarez, 2B
Jeremy Rivera, SS
Juan Florentino, RHP
Aaron Perry, RHP
Antoni Flores, SS

Dropped off list:
Teddy Stankiewicz, RHP (2013 2nd round pick)
Justin Haley, RHP

About Scott Greene 17 Articles
President of Prospects1500. Commissioner of Diamond Duos dynasty fantasy baseball leagues. Founder of MLB Fantasy Playoffs Parlay. Participant in more than a dozen other baseball leagues. Account Manager for Reminder Publications in real life. Huge Bruce Springsteen and pro wrestling fan. Along with his wife and two boys, lives in Longmeadow, MA.