Red Sox infield prospect Jeter Downs will represent the Red Sox in the 2021 All-Star Futures Game on July 11, Major League Baseball announced on Wednesday.
Downs will serve as Boston’s lone representative for the American League squad in one of the hallmark events that will lead up to the 91st MLB All-Star Game at Coors Field in Denver on July 13.
“I think it’s great, honestly,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said Wednesday when asked about Downs’ selection. “It’s a showcase. He’s going to be around the best of the best prospects in the league. This is a guy that we believe is going to be a good big-league player. Just to be in that environment he has to be special. So, looking forward for Jeter to go over there, do his thing, and enjoy the whole experience.”
This year’s American League team will be managed by former big-league reliever LaTroy Hawkins. The game itself is a seven-inning exhibition that features some of the top prospects in baseball that will begin at 3 p.m. eastern time on Sunday, July 11.
Downs, who turns 23 in late July, is regarded by both Baseball America and MLB Pipeline as the No. 2 prospect in Boston’s farm system, trailing only fellow infielder Triston Casas for the top spot in the organization.
One of three players acquired from the Dodgers in the infamous Mookie Betts/David Price trade last February, Downs has certainly experienced the trials and tribulations of playing at the Triple-A level for the first time in his career this season.
Coming into play on Wednesday, the right-handed hitting middle infielder is slashing .243/.323/.410 with three doubles, seven home runs, 16 RBI, 20 runs scored, 16 walks, 51 strikeouts, and 10 stolen bases over his first 38 games (164 plate appearances) for Triple-A Worcester.
In just his last seven games, though, Downs has seemed to turn a corner offensively, as he is hitting .320/.379/.440 (.819 OPS, 118 wRC+) since June 20.
That said, Downs was forced to exit the WooSox’ latest game on Tuesday after an awkward collision at home plate with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders catcher Rob Brantly. He was later checked for a head injury, per MassLive.com’s Katie Morrison.
With that in mind, it should be noted that Downs will be held out of Worcester’s lineup on Wednesday, though Morrison notes that ‘he looks to be fine’ and was out taking ground balls at shortstop earlier in the afternoon.
(Picture of Jeter Downs: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)