Boston Red Sox potential spring training prospect surprises

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Mar 22, 2014; Lake Buena Vista, FL, USA; A Boston Red Sox hat, sunglasses, and baseballs sit in the dugout during the game against the Atlanta Braves at Champion Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

A Player To Be Named Later (PTBNL) usually is a baseball after thought based on how the player he was traded for performed. The more remarkable the performance, then hopefully, the higher in prospect or roster rankings the PTBNL is. This strange method has actually seen the PTBNL be the original player traded for. Sometimes a PTBNL can be someone who eventually makes a name for themselves. David Ortiz was a PTBNL.

The Red Sox shipped Felix Doubront to the Cubs and eventually a bundle arrived on the doorstep of Yawkey Way that contained Marco Hernandez. Hernandez, a 23-year-old, hits from the left side and throws from the right. Marco is both a shortstop and second baseman who in 2014 reached A+ ball for the Cubs and hit .270.

Hernandez was assigned to Portland AA to start 2015 and really came on strong with a slash of .326/.349/.482 and five home runs and 31 RBI. Good enough for a promotion to Pawtucket a AAA where in 46 games Hernandez slashed .271/.300/.409 with four home runs and 22 RBI.

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Hernandez is viewed as a more than competent shortstop or defender since he also sees duty at third and second with some above-average speed and good baseball instincts. Hernandez is also Rule 5 eligible and the expectation is Hernandez will be added to the 40 man roster in December.

What intrigues me about Hernandez is the sudden rise in one season from A+ to AAA ball and still managing some decent numbers. Spring training will be a way to cement his possibilities as a utility infielder of the future with Boston or elsewhere. I picture a strong spring for Hernandez – not strong enough for a 25 man spot, but enough of an attention getter to have him a player of promise.