Red Sox: Examining the remaining non-roster invitees in major league camp
By Jimmy Longo
A 24-year-old right-handed reliever out of the University of Kentucky, Chandler Shepherd is seen as what could be a serviceable member of a major league bullpen at some point, though he hasn’t cracked the major league roster yet, as last year was his first year in both AA and AAA, compiling a 2.81 ERA over 40 games with a .189 BAA.
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This spring, Shepherd hasn’t fared very well, giving up six earned runs in seven innings of work out of the Red Sox bullpen. Opponents are batting .333 off of Shepherd and he’s given up two home runs to count. Thus to say this could be equated to the young righty having historically bad springs, as his career spring training ERA is 8.18.
Looking forward, Shepherd makes these rankings simply because of a lack of substance in terms of numbers of non-roster invitees, there aren’t a lot to choose from.
Down the road, Shepherd is a middle to lower-end prospect whose ceiling hits as a middle-innings reliever out of a major league bullpen. Whether that is with the Red Sox or not remains to be the question, as Shepherd is 24 and the Red Sox have plenty of formidable righties in their bullpen with the presence of Heath Hembree, Joe Kelly, Matt Barnes, Tyler Thornburg, and Craig Kimbrel.
Should Shepherd have a good start to the minor league season and one of the bullpen righties go down with an injury, Shepherd could provide some injury depth on a call-up to the Red Sox this season.