No. 27: Red Sox outfield prospect Tyler Dearden
2021 was absolutely a breakout year for Tyler Dearden. The outfielder came into the year without much of an identity. He was seen as someone who had potential, but wasn’t really putting up the numbers. Due to that, his projections went down a bit. Dearden was a prospect that graded out average-at-best in nearly every category.
2021 changed a lot of that. A .261/.368/.523 slash line will certainly make people see you in a different light. Dearden did all that at the highest level he’s ever been at too, High-A. The 23-year-old did have a little bit of a strikeout problem, but is patient and drew a good amount of walks as well.
Dearden managed to set career-highs in a lot of categories, including doubles (20), home runs (24), RBI (80), and runs scored (73). There will be some that believe he over-performed in 2021, but I don’t believe that’s the case. He’s a prospect, prospects improve their game – that’s what happened. The left-handed hitter showed off legitimate power, power that he always had shown the potential for.
What was a major positives were his splits. He had a lot more power against righties (.259/.361/.573), got on base better against lefties (.269/.394/.346). The fact that Dearden slashed .308/.422/.670 with runners in scoring position is a serious highlight too.
Defensively, Dearden isn’t going to win any awards in the outfield. However, he isn’t going to hurt you either. He can make plays and will do enough to make you feel confident with him out there, which is something the Red Sox could use right now in their outfield.
If I’m being honest, it’s the same story for his arm. Dearden doesn’t have a cannon, but his arm isn’t bad. He has enough strength behind it and can hit his spots. That’s a positive. Especially considering he has played left field a lot. If he could learn how to play the Green Monster, he would be really solid out there, as his arm is more-than-good-enough for the short left field of Fenway Park.
Dearden isn’t the fastest on the field, but he isn’t exactly slow. He’ll be able to get a lot of doubles, especially if he starts going opposite field off that Green Monster. His gap power is nice, and with enough speed he could be an extra-base machine. Dearden won’t be stealing a lot of bases, but he’s a smart base-runner so that helps his case.
I don’t think Tyler Dearden is below-average at anything. Some aspects of his game aren’t phenomenal but they are solid. Meanwhile, his bat could be absolutely lethal. He could some serious steps forward in 2021. It should be fun to see where he goes from there.
A .275-type hitter who will take walks and mash 25-plus home runs, who can produce runs at a strong clip. Dearden is a stud at the plate, and the Red Sox always love some offense.