The first game of the spring is in the books for the Boston Red Sox; Boston emerged victorious by the score of 5-3 over Northeastern University in an exhibition game. Some everyday players saw some limited playing time, so it's good to see that they can take down a college team at least.
With all of the changes to Boston's roster and expectations for the 2023 season being, well, not particularly high, the Red Sox are going to need someone to step up and help lead this Boston roster if they have any hopes of making a run. It remains to be seen who that someone will be.
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While we wait for the various competitions in spring training to play out on the field, we have been taking a look at some of the minor leaguers that you should be keeping an eye on in 2023. Ceddanne Rafaela has some issues with his approach at the plate, but if he makes the needed adjustments, look out. He is definitely part of the young movement of the organization that is taking form.
Also, there are players in Boston's farm system that have more upside and get more attention than Kiers Meredith, but he can get on base at a high clip, has some real speed, and plays a premium defensive position quite well. If he can figure out how to hit for more power, more folks are going to notice him in a hurry.
Finally, we published a piece on the site examining Tanner Houck's push to make the starting rotation for the Red Sox coming out of spring training. Coming off back surgery, Houck knows he is going to have to prove that he is healthy enough to withstand a starter's workload and also be able to get lefties out, but so far his efforts are promising. Regardless of his role, his versatility is paramount.
One of the most exciting prospects in all of baseball is Reds' prospect Elly De La Cruz. A physical specimen loaded with tools, it sure sounds like he is making a good impression in spring training. While he will likely have to wait a while to make his major league debut, he is going to make the Reds have to keep him in mind assuming he plays anywhere close to his potential.
It was revealed yesterday that Atlanta Braves star second baseman Ozzie Albies had surgery on his shoulder in the offseason. It sounds like it was a minor issue that had been bothering him for a while and he should be mostly good to go now, but the Braves seem like they are a bit banged up heading into their spring training schedule.