You may notice that this week’s Boston Red Sox stock list is a bit minor-league-centric. It’s not to say that the main roster doesn’t have any standouts. We know about the usuals (J.D. Martinez, Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers), but there are some performances (good and bad) throughout the organization that could make big impacts down the line.
Young Red Sox on the Rise
Jarren Duran (AAA Worcester)– This is not his first time on this list. No one within the organization has made as much noise as Duran in the last couple of weeks. The hype is mostly due to his play. This week he hit in four of five games. His power was on full display on May 11 when he launched two into the seats against Syracuse. He again went yard two days later, bringing his season total to four in only 11 games. His slash line up to May 15 is .279/.380/.605. That looks like someone who’s ready for the big leagues.
The other part of the hype is coming from the fact that the big-league Red Sox are having problems with production from the left-field position. With Franchy Cordero continuing to struggle, J.D. Martinez has started to see more time in the field. Although Martinez has made some nice plays so far, it’s not ideal for the club to have him out there on a regular basis.
Fans are already clamoring for Durran to make his way up to Boston. So what’s the hold-up? Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom wants to see a larger sample size from Duran. Bloom told The Athletic he wants to see him “go through the ups and downs of the season and playing every day.” So curb your enthusiasm Red Sox fans. Durran still has a little bit of seasoning to undergo. Put that on top of the fact that he is still learning how to play the outfield. While he may not be ready quite yet, there may be another member of the WoSox that could be a little closer.
GET JARREN DURAN UP HERE NOW pic.twitter.com/5re6IfV4Bi
— Jared Carrabis (@Jared_Carrabis) May 14, 2021
Danny Santana (AAA Worcester)– At 30 years old Santana doesn’t quite have the fanfare that Jaren Durran has, but he may be the most helpful player that the Sox organization has right now. We’ve already mentioned the struggles from the left-field position, and Santana may be the answer. Not only does he have major league experience, but he has been quite productive during his minor league rehab stint. He’s batting .364/.423/.682 in his first six games with high-A Greenville and AAA Worcester.
Even with the hot start, the organization is taking a careful approach with Santana too. In March, Santana suffered a foot infection that put him in the hospital. He also missed the entire 2020 season. So, it’s been quite a while since Santana has felt the effects of a full professional season. “We have to be patient,” Alex Cora told reporters. With a conservative approach to both Santana and Duran, it will be interesting to see if the organization’s hand is forced at some point.
Triston Casas (AA Portland)– The theme continues. This time it’s the number one prospect in the organization. If Casas’ .947 OPS hasn’t been impressive enough, he’s also put together a mini five-game hitting streak that remains intact. The most impressive of his outings so far came May 12th against Hartford, where we got to see the power that he posses on display.
Have a night, Triston Casas.
Casas crushed his first two Double-A homers.
He’s Boston’s top-ranked prospect: https://t.co/TvSU7WYunx
— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) May 13, 2021
Bobby Dalbec– It’s awesome to have this name on the positive side of the list. This week though, it’s been quite productive for the young first basemen. From May 10-May 15 he hit .385 with a 1.429 OPS. It’s his best stretch of the season so far. Even through the struggles, Dalbec’s expected numbers weren’t as bad as his actual numbers showed (xWOBA .341 xSLG .509). That is usually a sign that things will start to turn in that player’s favor sooner or later.
Franchy Cordero- This stock may be at an all-time low. Cordero’s steadily decreasing playing time is a sign that the Red Sox organization is losing faith. While appearing in four games this week, he only accounted for two hits in 13 plate appearances. That brings his season line to .167/.222/.205. We’ve already talked about the club’s decision to play J.D. Martinez in the field a bit more. That, coupled with the encouraging play from Danny Santana and Jaren Durran at the lower levels, means the future isn’t looking too bright for Cordero. So far, the trade with the Kansas City Royals isn’t panning out as Andrew Benintendi is slowly starting to put things together.
Alex Verdugo– Now, Verdugo’s struggles aren’t anywhere as prominent as Cordero’s, but if we are just looking at this week in a vacuum, it just wasn’t very good for the potential superstar. Even though he capped off his week with a birthday home run, Verdugo was previously mired in an 0-15 slump. In total for the week, here are some of the less than stellar numbers: .130/.200/.261, .095 BABIP and a -.1 WAR. With a scheduled day off on Sunday and a team off-day Monday, this looks like the perfect time for him to recharge his battery.
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