Another week down in the majors, another week down in the minors. This week was generally a good one as a few prospects continued torrid starts while a few others, especially top prospects Xander Bogaerts and Matt Barnes began to play well after slow starts to the year.
- Matt Barnes had gotten off to a terrible start to this season, but he threw his first good game of the year this week. He went 6 innings, striking out 7 while allowing just a run on 5 hits. That performance brings his season to a still unimpressive 7.71 ERA and 1.87 WHIP, but it’s better than what he had before that last start and his 11 strikeouts in 9.1 innings is a step in the right direction in Portland.
- Henry Owens‘ great start to the season continued this week as he made his third start of the season. He allowed 2 runs on 3 hits and 2 walks while striking out 7 in 5 innings. He was tagged with the loss, bringing his record to 0-1, but he has looked very good this season as he holds a 2.40 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 15 innings with High-A Salem.
- Anthony Ranaudo also continues his excellent start to the season with his start this week. The 6’7″ right hander went 5.2 innings, allowing a run on 4 hits and 3 walks while striking out 5. This most recent start brings his season ERA to a remarkable 1.15 after 3 starts with Portland as Ranaudo appears to have turned a major corner after a terrible 2012 season.
- Xander Bogaerts finally put his foot down and started hitting in the 2013 season. Although he is still homerless on the young season, he brought his average up to .266 and he has 5 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. Another plus with Bogaerts’ 2013 season is that his walk rate has jumped tremendously from his time in Portland last year; he has six walks this year compared to just one in 93 plate appearances with the Sea Dogs last season.
- Bryce Brentz has cooled down a bit after a great first week as he sits with a .246 average to go with 1 home run and 8 RBIs to start the season. Still, one can’t overlook the fact that he is the closest decent hitting prospect to the majors. If Shane Victorino is forced to go on the DL after sustaining a minor injury in yesterday’s game, it will likely be Brentz coming to the majors to take his place.
- Garin Cecchini, on the other hand, has been the hottest hitter in the Red Sox system as he is hitting .327 with 1 homer, 5 RBIs, and 6 stolen bases. If he hits well enough in Salem, he could be looking at a mid-season promotion to Portland much like Xander Bogaerts drew last season.
- Deven Marrero, Boston’s 2012 first-round pick, is another one of Salem’s hottest hitters. After taking a 1-4 today, he is hitting .286 with 3 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. Added onto that is the fact that Marrero is a great defensive shortstop and could be giving Jose Iglesias a run for his money in a few years, at least with the bat.