Boston Red Sox prospect Alex Erro's unheralded hit tool

New York Yankees v Boston Red Sox - Game One
New York Yankees v Boston Red Sox - Game One / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

When the Boston Red Sox selected Alex Erro out of Northwestern in the 19th round of the 2019 MLB Draft, he was an infield prospect whose good defense and contact skills carried his profile.

Flash forward to 2023, and he's one of the more underappreciated catching prospects in the system.

Boston converted Erro to a catcher after he was drafted. In 2021 (his first season with Single-A Salem), Erro appeared in games at first base, second base, third base, and catcher. In 2022, he made starts in left field and as a catcher. 2023 has seen him catch and play first base.

The only constant there is catcher. Erro has been given time at a lot of positions in the last three years, but Boston always manages to get him behind the plate.

Another constant for Erro is his hitting ability. The switch-hitter doesn't put up anything super significant in the power department, but he puts the bat on the ball.

Erro has been playing for the High-A Greenville Drive since last season. In 40 games (123 at-bats) in 2022, Erro slashed .301/.374/.415 with four doubles, two triples, and two home runs. He drove in 20 runs, scored 20 more, and stole two bases. 29 strikeouts and 14 walks in 139 plate appearances gave him a 20.9% K rate and a 10.1% walk rate.

In 2023, Erro has been even better. He is slashing .304/.389/.402 with five doubles and two home runs in 34 games (112 at-bats). He's driven in 16 runs, scored 21 more, and stolen six bases. Altogether, Erro has 23 strikeouts and 16 walks in 131 plate appearances which gives him a much improved 17.6% K rate and a 12.2% walk rate.

Erro's never going to possess a lot of home run power, but the rest of the game is there. He's a solid defensive backstop and first baseman who can appear at other positions if needed. A good arm has helped him throw out 33.7% of would-be base stealers.

Erro doesn't strike out, and he draws a decent amount of walks. He's not fast, but he has good speed for his position and fantastic baserunning skills and instincts to make him appear faster.

Erro is 25 (December birthday) and still playing in High-A, but that could be due to him having under 250 at-bats at the level and still learning the catcher position. What is undeniable, however, is his hitting talent. Erro has one of the better hit tools in the system. It gets overlooked due to his lack of power, but it's hard to deny when watching a game.

Alex Erro is quietly making a name for himself as a Red Sox catching prospect

The crazy part is that the Red Sox catching situation in the minor leagues is one of the few question marks in their system. Nathan Hickey and Brooks Brannon are the only two ranked in their top 30, and there are major question marks on if their defense will allow them to stick at the position.

Erro's still relatively new to the position and has already shown he can be solid behind the plate, with the potential to get better. He's athletic, versatile, and proof that putting the bat on the ball can lead to good things (even when you aren't hitting it 500 feet).

Alex Erro might not be one of the top names in the Boston Red Sox system. But a switch-hitting catcher with a plus hit tool deserves more attention than he's getting.

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