Top-5 Red Sox prospects signed on the international market
Red Sox outfield prospect Gilberto Jimenez
The Red Sox got a bargain when they signed Gilberto Jimenez for a mere $10,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2017.
The switch-hitter will produce a high average at the plate. Jimenez hit .306 for Low-A Salem last season and he owns a .324 average across three levels since joining the Red Sox organization.
He bulked up by adding a significant amount of muscle last year but it didn’t translate to the expected uptick in power, finishing the season with only three home runs. Jimenez tallied 16 doubles and six triples though, so he can still rack up extra-base hits even if they aren’t clearing the fence.
His plus-plus speed is the tool that stands out most with Jimenez. He only stole 13 bases in 21 attempts but he has the wheels to pile up much more once he learns to pick his spots more efficiently.
Jimenez could be a Gold Glove-caliber center fielder. His speed helps him cover plenty of ground in the outfield, he has good instincts plus a strong throwing arm.
It wasn’t long ago that Jimenez was viewed as one of the top position players in the Red Sox farm system but he has fallen to No. 10 on MLB Pipeline’s list. This is partially due to the emergence of other prospects in the system but the lack of power may have caused his stock to drop a bit and he still hasn’t played above Low-A.
The Red Sox didn’t add Jimenez to their 40-man roster ahead of the Rule 5 draft. It’s unlikely that a team would select him since he’s far from major league ready but there’s some risk in leaving him unprotected if a rebuilding team wants to gamble on his upside by stashing him on their bench as a pinch-runner or defensive replacement.