Red Sox Prospect Watch: Strong early impressions made

WEST PALM BEACH, FL - MARCH 6: Kyle Martin /
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Boston Red Sox Trey Ball
BOSTON, MA – JUNE 19: Trey Ball of the Boston Red Sox, seventh overall draft pick, meets the media in the Red Sox dugout before a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on June 19, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Gail Oskin/Getty Images) /

Portland Sea Dogs (Double-A)

The Sea Dogs are home to plenty of scalding-hot and ice-cold players at the moment.

On the scalding-hot side for the hitters are Cole Sturgeon and Tate Matheny, as well as Josh Tobias and Esteban Quiroz.

Sturgeon is slashing .364/.446/.600 with nine RBI and 10 runs scored. He’s mashed four doubles and three home runs while stealing five bases in five attempts.

Meanwhile, Matheny has a .326/.348/.426 slash line with three RBI and 10 runs scored. He’s not hitting for extra-bases like Sturgeon, but that’s still a fantastic line. The 24-year-old also has two steals.

Tobias spent last year adjusting to Double-A and seems to have a grasp of it in 2018. The switch-hitter has a .327 average with one home run on the year. He’s scored eight runs and driving in three more as well. On defense, he’s trying out a new position with third base and doesn’t look bad.

Esteban Quiroz is the reason Tobias is no longer playing second. He’s looked fine in the field, but it’s his bat that’s been most exciting. The 26-year-old Mexican League product has a .306/.424/.612 slash line on the year. He leads the team in home runs (4) and RBI (13), while his 10 runs are tied for the team lead as well.

I’m officially adding Quiroz to my client list.

Pitching-wise, Mike Shawaryn still looks sharp. The right-handed pitcher has a 2.70 ERA in three starts (16 2/3 innings). He’s not the only one impressing though.

Adam Lau has a 3.60 ERA over five innings, that includes a save. The 23-year-old has shown improvement on his pitches this season. It’s showing early as opponents hold a .222 batting average against him this year.

Jake Cosart was ridiculous in 2016. In 2017 he was really really good. Now in 2018, he’s been fantastic. Yet, the 24-year-old isn’t showcased in the Red Sox top-30 prospect list.

Cosart hasn’t allowed an earned run over 7 2/3 innings (four appearances) this year. In that time the right-hander has eight strikeouts while opponents are hitting .111 against him. He also has a ridiculous 0.65 walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP).

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25-year-old Matthew Kent is also putting up some crazy numbers. The lefty’s thrown 8 1/3 innings and has a 0.00 ERA and 0.84 WHIP. Oh, and opponents are hitting .080 and have struck out 11 times against him.

Someone I’ve always been a big fan of is Trevor Kelley. Definitely, consider him a “client” of mine. The reliever has a 1.80 ERA over five innings this season and has picked up two saves. This is coming on the heels of two really superb seasons, and he’s only getting better.

The 24-year-old right-hander has yet to walk anyone, and might not be in Double-A for too long this year.

Now for some of the colder players.

Josh Ockimey has returned from injury and just a .238 average on the year. He also has a home run and five RBI in 21 at-bats though.

Danny Mars is slashing .196/.241/.235 on the year. He’ll heat up though. In the meantime, he’s already stolen three bases. Just think how many he can steal when he starts getting on base again. The Red Sox thin outfield depth will be bolstered once Mars gets more recognition.

Teddy Stankiewicz has an 8.16 ERA. However, his last start drastically lowered it from the 14.04 that it was. His last time out saw the right-hander go six shutout innings, giving up two hits.

Kyle Hart has a 5.74 ERA but has looked fantastic in spurts. As has Trey Ball, whose ERA ballooned to 5.06 recently. As a reliever though, early on one-or-two bad starts can kill your numbers. Let’s see how he bounces back.

Dedgar Jimenez threw another solid game, but his ERA in Double-A sits at 5.40. With a strong Triple-A performance sandwiched between bad and solid Double-A starts, I’m not worried. His ERA will drop as he continues to pitch well.