Boston Red Sox Prospect Watch: New season, new headline names

BOSTON, MA - JULY 22: Boston Red Sox 2021 first round draft pick Marcelo Mayer poses for a portrait as he is signed with the club on July 22, 2021 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
BOSTON, MA - JULY 22: Boston Red Sox 2021 first round draft pick Marcelo Mayer poses for a portrait as he is signed with the club on July 22, 2021 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images) /
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Boston Red Sox Triston Casas
YOKOHAMA, JAPAN – AUGUST 07: Infielder Triston Casas #26 during the gold medal game between Team United States and Team Japan on day fifteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium on August 07, 2021 in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan. (Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images) /

Red Sox Triple-A (Worcester)

Triston Casas got off to a “cold” start. Good thing the internet never overreacts, right? The left-handed hitter has figured it out though. Casas is up to a .262/.395/.508 slash line with three doubles and four home runs. The 22-year-old has 12 RBI and 15 runs scored and has already been walked 13 times. It’s choke-up season baby!

Ryan Fitzgerald rakes. The defensive juggernaut is a tank at the plate too. Fitz is slashing .291/.355/.691 with three doubles, two triples, and five home runs. The left-handed hitter has 15 RBI (in 15 games) and 10 runs scored. He should be up in the Majors at some point this year. Give the 27-year-old the chance he deserves.

Jeter Downs is playing better than he was last year. Still not great, but the improvements are there and it’s early so things could get a lot better still. The 23-year-old right-handed hitter has a .217/.319/.367 with three doubles and two home runs.

He’s driven in three runs and scored 11 more, stealing three bases. Downs isn’t “buried” by the other prospects at his position yet. But he’s AJ Styles and they are the Undertaker. And this might be the Boneyard Match if things don’t change quickly.

Ronaldo Hernandez has had some major issues at the plate to start the season. The right-handed hitter is someone that can get extremely hot and cold though. And it’s mainly due to the fact that the catcher doesn’t draw walks (something he needs to work on).

He had only 12 last year and has yet to take one in 2022. The 24-year-old is slashing .105/.105/.158 with two doubles, four RBI, and three runs scored. He’ll likely be fine. But this is a loaded position for the Red Sox (as you’ll see later on) so a slow start isn’t great.

Jarren Duran is getting back to basics and I love it. He will still hit for power, but it seems like he’s just focusing on getting on base again and I’m here for it. The left-handed hitter is slashing .346/.469/.423 with two doubles, three RBI, and six runs scored. He’s already stolen five bases.

Johan Mieses is going crazy right now. The 26-year-old outfielder has a .348/.423/.913 slash line at the moment. That insane slugging percentage is thanks to the right-handed hitter having one double and four home runs in just 23 at-bats. Insanity. Mieses has already driven in nine runs and scored six more.

Nick Sogard has already spent time in Double-A and Triple-A. Between the two, the second baseman is slashing .278/.381/.333 with two doubles in that time. He’s driven in two runs, scored nine more, and stolen one base. Sogard’s a very good all-around type player that can give you some of everything, and suddenly he’s one step away from the Majors.

Josh Winckowski has to be one of the first in line to get a call-up whenever the Red Sox need a starter. The right-handed pitcher has allowed three earned runs in two starts this season (10 innings). That comes out to a 2.70 WHIP. He pairs that with a .171 BAA and a 1.00 WHIP. The 23-year-old only has six strikeouts so far, but that’s not his game anyway. And it’s working for him right now.

Zack Kelly went into the season with an outside chance to make the team. He didn’t make it but isn’t letting that slow him down in Triple-A. The 27-year-old righty has a 3.18 ERA over 5 2/3 innings pitched. He’s holding on to a 1.59 WHIP due to some walk issues, but has a .111 BAA and has seven strikeouts in that time.

Durbin Feltman is off to a strong start. The right-hander has a 4.50 ERA which doesn’t look great, but he’s a reliever. So one bad outing early in the season and your numbers look bad. In reality, he’s given up three earned runs in six innings of work. That can quickly be dropped to a great ERA. Meanwhile, the 25-year-old has a .200 BAA, 1.17 WHIP, and nine strikeouts.

Connor Seabold’s first start of the year wasn’t great. The right-hander gave up two runs on four hits and two walks in just 3 2/3 innings. He struck out two but hit another batter in that time. Not miserable but clearly things weren’t going well that time out.

Well, Seabold made an adjustment. Because in his two starts since then, the 26-year-old combined for 11 shutout innings. He gave up just five hits and three walks in that stretch, striking out seven.

Brian Keller has been pretty solid overall. On the year the former-Yankees prospect has given up five earned runs in 11 1/3 innings of work. That’s good enough for a 3.97 ERA. The 25-year-old righty has a .227 BAA, 1.24 WHIP, and 12 strikeouts so far.