Boston Red Sox Prospect Watch: End of another minor league season

FT. MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 21: Ronaldo Hernandez of the Boston Red Sox looks on during a spring training team workout on February 21, 2021 at jetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers, Florida. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
FT. MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 21: Ronaldo Hernandez of the Boston Red Sox looks on during a spring training team workout on February 21, 2021 at jetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers, Florida. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images) /
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Boston Red Sox Triston Casas
YOKOHAMA, JAPAN – AUGUST 04: Triston Casas #26 of Team United States hits a two-run home run against Team Dominican Republic in the first inning during the knockout stage of men’s baseball on day twelve of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium on August 04, 2021 in Yokohama, Japan. (Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images) /

Red Sox Double-A (Portland)

Triston Casas went out and proved he is a star this year. The first baseman slashed .284/.395/.484 with 12 doubles, two triples, and 13 home runs. Oh, and he did that in just 77 games (275 at-bats) due to missing a large chunk thanks to the Olympics. Casas drove in 52 runs and scored 57 more, stealing six bases. He’s ready for the Majors if you ask me. Or at least, he’s extremely close.

Kole Cottam had a really solid season in High-A. Then he got promoted to Double-A and the catcher put up even better numbers. In 25 games with Portland, Cottam slashed .282/.337/.526. Overall, he slashed .278/.371/.500 with 18 doubles, two triples, and 10 home runs. Cottam had 33 runs scored and 33 runs driven in, giving pretty strong run production in just 234 at-bats.

Ronaldo Hernandez went on some kind of run to end the season. The catcher ended up slashing .280/.319/.506 with one triple and 19 home runs accompanying a career-best 26 doubles. Hernandez has driven in 53 runs and scored 44 more – all in just 92 games. One of his best years in the minors.

Pedro Castellanos put up numbers this year. Yet, he doesn’t get much fanfare. The right-handed hitter slashed .289/.364/.471 with 14 doubles, three triples, and a career-high 13 home runs. He drove in 44 runs and scored 66 more (a career-high as well), while stealing two bases. Castellanos has a very mature bat and is only 23. He doesn’t have a clear path at the moment but could figure something out, especially with his ability to play first and the corner outfield.

Cameron Cannon was finding his swing in Double-A. He ended the year slashing .284/.331/.440 between two levels. The shortstop mashed an impressive 30 doubles and 11 home runs in that time, driving in 53 runs and scored 61 more – stealing nine bases. Cannon’s offensive potential is off the charts, and he really let that shine in 2021.

Ryan Fitzgerald has proven in the past that he’s a great player. Great defense, ability to play a few positions, and a strong bat. This year he added power to his game though. Prior to 2021, his highest slugging percentage was .396. This year between Double-A and Triple-A Fitz slashed .270/.350/.512. That massive jump in slugging was due to career-highs in doubles (32) and home runs (16) to go along with four triples. He drove in 58 runs and scored 55 more, stealing four bases.

Devlin Granberg finished off his year strong, hitting a grand slam this week. The outfielder ended up slashing .297/.355/.515 between High-A and Double-A. He smacked 23 doubles and two triples to go along with a career-high 17 home runs. Meanwhile, he set new career-highs in runs scored (69) and runs batted in (74), adding on five steals.

Tyreque Reed didn’t set a new career-high in home runs. He finished the year with 17 between High-A and Double-A, one off his career-best of 18. However, Reed did set new marks in RBI (71) and runs scored (60). His .271/.375/.492 slash line was the best of his career as well. Reed added 17 doubles and one triple, stealing four bases.

Hudson Potts finished off the year pretty strong. The third baseman ended up slashing .217/.264/.399 with 18 doubles and 11 home runs in 281 at-bats. Potts drove in 47 runs and scored 33 more. Overall, the numbers aren’t phenomenal but he had decent run production and pop and played better as the year went on. Remember, he missed a large portion to start the year due to injury.

Jay Groome finished his year between High-A and Double-A incredibly. After a miserable start to the year, he was dominant. The lefty ended the season with a 4.81 ERA, .239 BAA, and 1.27 WHIP. In 97 1/3 innings pitched, Groome racked up 134 strikeouts and produced some untouchable outings.

Chris Murphy didn’t post the best numbers in 2021. The left-hander finished with a 4.62 ERA, .241 BAA, and 1.26 WHIP. Not terrible, but nothing spectacular. That being said, Murphy had a couple of stretches where he was absolutely phenomenal. Considering this was his first full season and he was playing at two levels that he had never played at before, it’s very excusable. Murph has phenomenal stuff and amazing potential. He finished with 128 strikeouts in 101 1/3 innings and the future is very bright.

Brayan Bello spent time between High-A and Double-A, just like Murphy. And he had his moments of brilliance as well. The right-handed pitcher finished with a 3.87 ERA, .251 BAA, and 1.28 WHIP. He struck out 132 batters in 95 1/3 innings pitched. The reason for that is he’s just absolutely filthy. Unfair pitches.

Joan Martinez was utterly dominant to end the year. The relief pitcher ended up with a 2.48 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, and .180 BAA. Martinez had 20 walks in 36 1/3 innings, but severely cut down on them at the end of the year, they were basically non-existent for the last few months. The right-hander also had six holds, five saves in five opportunities, and 51 strikeouts.

Victor Santos threw 45 1/3 innings for Portland this season. In that time, the right-handed pitcher posted phenomenal numbers. Santos went 4-2 with 45 strikeouts compared to just six walks. That’s an incredible K/BB ratio. The 21-year-old posted a 2.58 ERA, .240 BAA, and 1.08 WHIP in the Red Sox organization this year.