Red Sox Prospect Watch: Two players traded away weaken ranks
By Hunter Noll
Another week, another raise in average from Danny Mars. I’ve said it over and over. Don’t worry about him, he’ll be fine. The switch-hitter is now up to .259 and it just keeps rising. Mars has 13 doubles, giving him a chance to crack his career-best 21. He’s also mashed two triples and one home run. Meanwhile, the 24-year-old has shown off his impressive speed with 13 steals in 15 attempts.
Another improved part of his game appears to be his eye, as Mars has drawn 26 walks this season. That’s just 10 off his career-best of 36 (set in 2016).
Jhon Nunez has also been seeing his average grow. The catcher is now up to a .270 average, thanks to a current seven-game hitting-streak. That .270 is accompanied by six doubles and one triple, as well as one home run in Double-A. He’s driven in 13 runs and scored 17 more, stealing two bases (six total). The switch-hitter continues to give depth to a “weak” position.
Josh Ockimey‘s average may be down to .257, but he’s still doing what he does best. The first baseman has 11 home runs on the year. Most importantly though, in just 222 at-bats the 22-year-old left-handed hitter has 41 RBI. His ability to drive runs in could get him on the Major League radar within the next year.
I like Austin Rei. The catcher might not have the best numbers in his minor league career so far, but the flashes are there. His slash line is up to .223/.349/.382, and he’s roped eight doubles and one triple, as well as five home runs this season. The 24-year-old has battled injures throughout his career, but his defensive potential and patience on offense intrigue me.
Speaking of intriguing, Johnny Bladel is 27 and recently joined the Portland Sea Dogs from an Independent League team. The Red Sox have had past success with things like this before *cough* Daniel Nava *cough*.
Bladel’s numbers don’t jump out at you yet, but he’s only had 49 at-bats. Should be fun to keep track of him. He was hitting .341 in the Independent League this season.
Travis Lakins has lowered his ERA to 2.83 on the year. His opponents batting average is down to .209 and his WHIP has been lowered to 1.19. All of this is thanks to a fantastic 14 1/3 innings streak in which he allowed no earned runs. In that time, there was a hitless streak of 4 2/3 and another of 7 2/3.
Teddy Stankiewicz threw a strong six innings (two earned) to lower his ERA to 5.05 on the year. The right-hander’s looked solid for the majority of the season. A few miserable starts have really ballooned his numbers though.
Mike Shawaryn holds a 3.55 ERA and 1.09 WHIP over 88 2/3 innings this season. The fact that he’s looking most impressive this year when Double-A is the highest level he’s been in so far is a fantastic sign. The 23-year-old right-hander was a fifth-round pick in 2016 and could factor into the Red Sox plans sometime in the not-so distant future (i.e. 2020 maybe).