Red Sox first base/outfield prospect Tyreque Reed was recently identified by Baseball America’s Geoff Pontes as a minor-league hitter who displayed power and on-base skills in 2021 and should be worth monitoring in 2022.
Reed, 24, was selected by the Sox in the minor-league phase of the 2020 Rule 5 Draft after spending the first four years of his professional career in the Rangers organization.
A former eighth-round draft pick of the Rangers out of Itawamba Community College in 2017, Reed had made it as far as the High-A level in his time with Texas before the COVID-19 pandemic wiped out the 2020 minor-league season.
Upon joining the Red Sox organization that December, Reed returned to the High-A level for the start of the 2021 campaign as he broke minor-league camp with the Greenville Drive.
In his first 48 games for Greenville, the hulking right-handed hitter batted an impressive .296/.405/.587 (160 wRC+) to go along with eight doubles, one triple, 14 home runs, 50 RBIs, 40 runs scored, four stolen bases, 30 walks, and 55 strikeouts across 215 plate appearances.
Following a 3-for-3 showing against the Asheville Tourists on July 15, Reed was promoted to Double-A Portland on the very same day fellow first baseman Triston Casas left the Sea Dogs to play for Team USA in the Tokyo Olympics.
With an uptick in competition level, Reed saw his strikeout rate rise (25.6% to 33.5%) and his walk rate fall (14.0% to 11.2%) with Portland while slashing .239/.335/.370 (95 wRC+) with nine doubles, three homers, 21 RBIs, 20 runs scored, 18 walks, and 54 strikeouts over 44 games spanning 161 trips to the plate.
On the 2021 season as a whole, Reed interestingly fared far better against right-handed pitching (.933 OPS in 291 PAs) than he did against lefties (.634 OPS in 85 PAs).
Defensively, the 6-foot-1, 250 pounder saw the majority of his playing time between Greenville and Portland come at first base. He committed a total of three errors while logging 499 innings at that position and also logged 148 innings as a left fielder in Portland.
Reed, who turns 25 in June, is not regarded by any major publication as one of the top prospects in Boston’s farm system. As noted by Pontes, the Mississippi native’s “carrying tool has long been his power, but his struggles with contact have led to struggles against spin and more advanced pitching.”
With all that being said, Reed is projected by SoxProspects.com to return to Portland for the start of the 2022 season, which begins in one month. Perhaps he can use what he learned last year and make the necessary adjustments to get off to a fast start this spring.
(Picture of Tyreque Reed: Kelly O’Connor/sittingstill.smugmug.com)