3: CF Jarren Duran
What to look for: The ability to adjust at the big-league level
The only prospect on this list to spend time in the major leagues, Jarren Duran’s stint in Boston was unquestionably a disappointment. Expected to be a sparkplug when he got called up in July, Duran posted a 51 OPS+ in 33 games before getting sent back down in early September.
Like many young players, a lack of plate discipline hurt Duran in the majors. He struck out in nearly 37% of plate appearances while walking just four times. And while his poor strike-zone management may have been excused if he was hitting home runs and stealing bases at the rate he did in Triple-A, Duran only hit two homers and swiped one base with the Red Sox.
No matter what, Duran is going to have a role in the major leagues. Scouts rate his speed as “plus-plus,” and while he is still adjusting to the outfield after moving there from second base, his wheels already give him a solid base to work from. Duran’s newly added power (16 home runs in 2021 after eight in his first two minor league seasons) gives him even more tools in his toolbox.
Duran can contribute to the Red Sox right now as a fourth outfielder, but his true potential is way higher. Duran has all the makings of a 5-tool-superstar, but unless he can make adjustments at the big-league level and develop better plate discipline, his struggles from 2021 will only continue.