Red Sox likely to target hitting in first round of draft


Despite the dearth of ace-caliber talent in the Red Sox organization, many rumors have suggested that the Red Sox will not seek to add another pitcher with the 7th overall pick in the draft. Throughout the draft preparation process, the Red Sox have been linked to four players– shortstop Alex Bregman, outfielders Andrew Benintendi and Daz Cameron, and pitcher Carson Fulmer. However, with increasing doubts about Fulmer’s ability to start at the next level, there has been an increasing sense of likelihood that the Red Sox will draft a hitter.

Don’t worry, though. This isn’t a huge mistake on the part of the Red Sox. Major League teams rarely (if ever) draft for need, given the years of development that most draftees require. Who knows? Perhaps when this year’s first round selection actually reaches the Red Sox, Boston’s rotation will be a major strength of the team.

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Plus, there’s little doubt that this historically weak draft is much deeper on the offensive side. Top pitching prospects Brady Aiken and Michael Matuella have undergone season-ending Tommy John Surgery and other top college arms such as Kyle Funkhouser and Walker Buehler have underperformed this season. That leaves Fulmer and UC-Santa Barbara righty Dillon Tate as the top arms in the draft and both are frighteningly likely to end up in the bullpen.

And though this draft is fairly weak in all aspects, there’s quite a bit more strength on the offensive side. Guys like Bregman, Cameron, and Benintendi may not have been top ten selections in previous drafts, but they all project as major league regulars, giving them more value than any of the pitchers likely to be available at that time.

This shouldn’t come as a huge surprise to Red Sox fans as this could be a very hitting-friendly draft across Major League Baseball. Things are becoming ever clearer with the draft (which is now less than a week away), and before long the Red Sox will be adding some elite talent to their farm system, even if it’s unlikely to come in the form of a pitcher.