Earlier Tuesday, it was reported that Red Sox prospect Noah Song’s petition to defer his active service time was denied by the Naval Academy and the Chief of Naval Operations. That much may be true, but it does not necessarily mean that Song will have to wait two years to pursue a career in professional baseball.
That much is the case because according to Red Sox vice president of player development Ben Crockett, Song’s waiver must still be reviewed by the Secretary of the Navy and Secretary of Defense.
“Until we hear something definitive from them,” Crockett said in an email to MassLive.com Tuesday. “Both the Red Sox and Noah will remain hopeful that he gets a chance to play for the Red Sox AND serve.”
This comes in the wake of a November 8th order from the Department of Defense that will allow service academy graduates to pursue a career in professional sports beginning next year.
But, because Song graduated from the Naval Academy this past May, those rules do not apply to him.
The California native is expected to report to flight school in Pensacola, Fla. come late January, where he would train for two years.
With more steps needed to be taken before all is said and done though, the door for Song to resume his baseball career in 2020, compared to 2022, appears to still be open for now.
The Red Sox selected the 22-year-old right-hander in the fourth-round of this year’s amateur draft and assigned him to Low-A Lowell, where he posted a 1.06 ERA and .167 batting average against over seven starts and 17 innings pitched over the summer.
He also represented Team USA in the Premier 12 tournament in the fall, where he put together five scoreless appearances out of the bullpen.
Per MLB.com, Song is ranked as the Sox’ No. 15 prospect headed into the end of the year.