Red Sox utility prospect Ryan Fitzgerald
The Red Sox need depth at several positions so why not consider a player capable of covering almost any of them? Ryan Fitzgerald has already seen time at second, third, shortstop and all three outfield positions this season. He has a few games at first base under his belt from previous seasons too. His glove is at least above-average with the potential to be elite at multiple positions, making him the perfect utility option to bolster the bench.
His defensive value is certainly important but the Red Sox also need players who can produce at the plate. Fitzgerald’s bat is making a leap this season with a strong start, hitting .303 with a 1.036 OPS, six home runs and 19 RBI in 21 games in Triple-A Worcester.
The one area that the left-handed hitter has struggled in this year is facing southpaws. Fitzgerald is hitting .217 in a limited sample against lefties this season. That makes him a candidate for a platoon role at multiple positions, at least in the short term. That’s essentially the role the Red Sox envisioned for Christian Arroyo, who has been useless against lefties (.077 AVG).
Arroyo has been struggling in general this season with a .186/.200/.256 slash line. He’s capable of providing more than that but the ceiling is fairly limited. It’s hard to imagine Fitzgerald doing any worse considering how well he’s swinging the bat in Worcester. He has more pop in his bat, with as many home runs in Triple-A this year as Arroyo had in 57 games for the Red Sox last season. If nothing else, he’s an upgrade defensively who offers more flexibility with his versatility.