Red Sox Prospect Watch: Michael Chavis moves up to Triple-A
By Hunter Noll
Esteban Quiroz is back! I was actually at the first game that he returned to, and he wasted no time reinserting himself into the offense. Quiroz had two RBI in his return.
Then in his second game (I was again present), Quiroz launched a three-run home run. I’m not exaggerating when I say the Reading stadium made a collective disappointed (except me) “aawwweee” grunt immediately when the ball left his bat, that was followed by silence. He followed that up by stealing a hit and RBI away with a diving stop later in the game.
If not for the injury that took most of his season, I truly believe Quiroz could’ve made a push to get to the Majors. The Red Sox have had problems at second base this year and there’s plenty of talent with Quiroz. In all four games since his return, he’s registered at least one hit and one RBI (he also has two home runs).
On the year, Quiroz is slashing .304/.407/.638 with 21 RBI and 16 runs scored. He’s hit five doubles and six home runs as well and has done all this in 19 games.
Bobby Dalbec is down to .256 but the power isn’t going anywhere. He now has eight doubles and six home runs in Double-A and had a home run robbed from him this week. On the year, Dalbec has 35 doubles and 32 home runs, as well as 104 RBI and 70 runs scored. The bat is legit.
Austin Rei has been slumping slightly at the plate and is down to .246 on the year. He still has a fantastic .355 OBP though, as well as a career-high in triples (2) and home runs (7).
Danny Mars raised his batting average one point to .255 this week, and boy was it an unlucky one for him. The switch-hitter was consistently putting the barrel on the ball only to have it find a glove.
It wasn’t just that game either, Mars has been doing nothing but making solid contact lately. Sooner-or-later it’s going to start paying off.
The average is low for Mars but plenty has gone right this year. His 21 doubles tie a career-high, and his 44 walks have shattered his previous mark of 36. The 60 runs he’s scored are two away from his career-best 62 he set last season, and 19-for-24 on steal attempts is solid.
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Eduardo Rodriguez has made two rehab starts in Double-A and went a combined eight shutout innings. The lefty allowed three hits and four walks while striking out 14. It appears he’s ready for the Majors again, and is lined up to start for Boston on Saturday.
Dedgar Jimenez has been d-e-a-l-i-n-g lately. Baby Bartolo is down to a 4.59 ERA for Portland. Over the last two months, he’s looked like the 2017 version, and that’s dangerous. I’m still incredibly high on the 22-year-old left-hander.
Matthew Kent doesn’t get talked about enough. That’s partially my fault, but let’s not point fingers. The left-hander has a 3.15 ERA and has been fantastic all season. A .244 BAA isn’t superb, but it’s leaps-and-bounds better than previous seasons. Clear steps of improvement have been made in almost every category and that’s extremely encouraging for the 25-year-old.
Teddy Stankiewicz didn’t have his best start of the year this week, but surprise-surprise, he went five innings again. That’s 22 straight Double-A outings that saw Stank go five-or-more innings. His 4.65 ERA isn’t good, but it’s not miserable considering everything else. Take away a few implosion starts and the right-hander would be having a superb season.
Like Stankiewicz, Kyle Hart has had a few “implosion” starts. Without those, his numbers would be ridiculous because his 3.60 ERA is still great. At the moment, Hart is on a month-long run that has really shown the potential he has. It will be exciting to see where he starts in 2019. If he’s in Triple-A, it will be a new step and we’ll be able to see how he takes the new challenge. If Hart remains in Double-A it will be his first time getting a second-year at a level. Then it will be interesting to see how much he improves.
Darwinzon Hernandez has made the jump to Double-A. The 21-year-old is being used as a bullpen arm, and so far has gone three innings, allowing earned one run. The lefty already has four strikeouts as well. This bodes well for his 2019 prospects, as this would make you believe he’ll be starting the year in Portland.