5 prospects who can help the Red Sox recover from a terrible start
Red Sox relief pitcher prospect Frank German
It might seem premature to be counting on a pitcher in Double-A but it’s hard not to see what Frank German is doing in Portland and envision the right-hander being on the fast track to the big leagues.
German has been nearly flawless in his six relief appearances, allowing only one unearned run on two hits over eight innings. He has struck out 15 batters and hasn’t walked any.
German struggled in his first taste of Double-A last year but a move to the bullpen has brightened his outlook. He had trouble consistently repeating his delivery as a starter but his command has improved in a relief role. German has been able to dial up the velocity as a reliever with a fastball that sits in the 97-98 mph range and can flirt with triple-digits. His changeup is a nice compliment to the fastball and he can get by with those two pitches as a reliever in case his fringy slider isn’t reliable enough.
It’s hardly uncommon for pitchers who struggled in the rotation to thrive once they move to the bullpen. When that pitcher throws the kind of heat that German is wielding, it’s going to grab our attention. He needs a bit more time to prove it’s sustainable but if he keeps racking up the strikeouts without walking hitters, German could rise rapidly to provide reinforcements for the Boston bullpen later this season.