Red Sox promote infield prospect Matthew Lugo to Double-A Portland

In a series of minor-league transactions made on Friday, the Red Sox promoted infield prospect Matthew Lugo from High-A Greenville to Double-A Portland.

Lugo, 21, will start at second base and bat sixth in his Double-A debut as the Sea Dogs go up against the Somerset Patriots at TD Bank Ballpark on Friday night.

Originally selected in the second round of the 2019 amateur draft out of the Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy in Puerto Rico, Lugo — the nephew of the former All-Star outfielder — forwent his commitment to the University of Miami by signing with the Red Sox for $1.1. million. He is now regarded by Baseball America as the No. 13 prospect in Boston’s farm system.

In 114 games with the Drive this season, Lugo batted a stout .288/.344/.500 to go along with 25 doubles, 10 triples, 18 home runs, 78 RBIs, 76 runs scored, 20 stolen bases, 35 walks, and 100 strikeouts over 512 plate appearances. He was named South Atlantic League Player of the Month in August.

Among qualified South Atlantic League hitters, the right-handed hitting Lugo ranked 12th in strikeout rate (19.5%), sixth in batting average, 27th in on-base percentage, third in slugging percentage, 10th in OPS (.844), sixth in isolated power (.212), sixth in speed score (7.4), and 10th in wRC+ (126), per FanGraphs.

Defensively, Lugo will be making just his eighth start of the season at second base on Friday. In Greenville, the 6-foot-1, 187-pounder logged 58 innings at second, 216 1/3 innings at third, and 628 2/3 innings at shortstop, where he committed 20 errors.

As noted by SoxProspects.com’s director of scouting Ian Cundall, though, Lugo moved from short to third in early August. There, the Manati native looked “a lot more comfortable defensively” while also being “more consistent” at the plate.

Lugo, who does not turn 22 until next May, should provide the Sea Dogs with a late-season boost after fellow infielder Alex Binelas was placed on the 7-day injured list because of a hamstring issue.

Beyond Lugo, the Red Sox also promoted right-hander Wyatt Olds and left-hander Brendan Cellucci to Portland on Friday.

(Picture of Matthew Lugo: Kelly O’Connor/sittingstill.smugmug.com)

Author: Brendan Campbell

Blogging about the Boston Red Sox since April '17. Also support Tottenham Hotspur.

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