Boston Red Sox potential spring training prospect surprises
Mar 20, 2014; Fort Myers, FL, USA; The Boston Red Sox take batting practice before the game between the Red Sox and the New York Yankees at JetBlue Park. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
America has long been recognized as the land of opportunity and for the Red Sox spring training is often an opportunity for a variety of players. Veterans are signed to contracts and by veterans it is those looking for redemption or to prolong the inevitable departure into an early retirement. Contracts that usually contain an escape clause based on being on the major league roster by a specific date. This represents the baseball toss it against the wall and see what may stick.
The veteran contingent will be slowly built up during the winter as needs become clear and names that once were noted are now given a second chance at baseball life. Most will enjoy the victuals of Federal Hill in Providence as they await the call while performing at Pawtucket. During the season, Sandy Leon, Jemile Weeks and Jeff Bianchi were among the notables who surfaced in Boston, but resided in Pawtucket for most of 2015.
The second level of opportunity is far more attractive to the Red Sox fan and management – those who are on the track towards MLB. The hot and lukewarm prospects whose goal is to get a positive vibe and just maybe pick up a roster spot.
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A few seasons ago Jackie Bradley forced the issue with a momentous spring training performance that forced the issue. Unfortunately, the sad story that followed demonstrated the pitfall of being hot at the right time and going cold at the wrong time. Bradley collapsed quicker than Lehman Brother during the Great Recession.
So just who may be the surprise performers in ST for 2016? Which young players could surface to suddenly grab attention and elevate their stock to management and to the enduring dream of Red Sox Nation.