Red Sox have 0.8 percent chance to land No. 1 pick in 2023 MLB Draft

The Red Sox did not finish with the worst record in baseball this season, yet they will have a chance to pick first in next year’s amateur draft.

On Monday, Major League Baseball announced that the first-ever draft lottery will take place during next month’s Winter Meetings in San Diego. Thanks to the newly-implemented collective bargaining agreement, the first six picks of the 2023 draft will now be determined via lottery as opposed to the reverse order of the previous year’s standings.

Coming off a 78-84 2022 campaign that saw them fall short of the postseason, the Red Sox would be in line to receive the 14th overall pick in the 2023 draft under the old collective bargaining agreement. They now have the 14th-best odds to obtain the No. 1 pick next July.

Boston will be in the mix with the 17 other non-playoff teams for the top overall selection. The teams with the three worst records in 2022 — the 55-107 Nationals, the 60-102 Athletics, and 62-100 Pirates — have the best chance (16.5) to win the top pick in the lottery.

From there, the Reds (13.2 percent) have the fourth-best, the Royals (10.0 percent) have the fifth-best, the Tigers (7.5 percent) have the sixth-best, the Rangers (5.5 percent) have the seventh-best, the Rockies (3.9 percent) have the eighth-best, the Marlins (2.7 percent) have the ninth-best, the Angels (1.8 percent) have the 10th-best, the Diamondbacks (1.4 percent) have the 11th-best, the Cubs (1.1 percent) have the 12th-best, the Twins (0.9 percent) have the 13th-best, the Red Sox (0.8 percent), have the 14th-best, the White Sox (0.6 percent) have the 15th-best, the Giants (0.5 percent) have the 16th-best, the Orioles (0.4 percent) have the 17th-best, and the Brewers (0.2 percent) possess the 18th-best odds.

In addition to having a 0.8 percent chance to land the top pick, the Red Sox have a 0.9 percent chance to pick second, a 1.0 percent chance to pick third, a 1.2 percent chance to pick fourth, a 1.4 percent chance to pick fifth, and a 1.7 percent chance to pick sixth, according to Tankathon.com.

If Boston’s No. 1 selection falls out of the top six in the lottery, it would pick 14th overall. Tankathon.com relays that the Sox have a 78.9 percent chance to pick 14th, a 13.6 percent chance to pick 15th, and a 0.6 percent chance to pick 16th.

While it is extremely unlikely the Red Sox come away with the top overall pick (something that has never happened in franchise history) on December 6, they have been able to use the first round of past drafts to strengthen their improving farm system.

Under chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom and vice president of player development and amateur scouting Toboni, Boston has taken infielders Mikey Romero, Marcelo Mayer, and Nick Yorke with its first pick in each of the last three drafts. All three Californians currently sit within the top 12 of Baseball America’s Red Sox prospects rankings.

(Picture of Mikey Romero: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

How did Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer fare in first full pro season?

Marcelo Mayer, arguably the top prospect in the Red Sox farm system and one of the brightest young talents in all of baseball, wrapped up his first full professional season last month.

Originally selected by Boston with the fourth overall pick in last summer’s amateur draft out of Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, Calif., Mayer appeared in four Grapefruit League games earlier this spring before breaking minor-league camp with Low-A Salem.

With the Salem Red Sox, the 19-year-old infielder batted .286/.406/.504 with 26 doubles, one triple, nine home runs, 40 RBIs, 46 runs scored, 16 stolen bases, 51 walks, and 78 strikeouts over 66 games (308 plate appearances). Despite missing a significant chunk of time with a sprained right wrist in late April and most of May, Mayer earned a promotion to High-A Greenville in early August.

Making the jump from Salem to Greenville alongside fellow top prospect Blaze Jordan, Mayer initially got off to a rough start with the Drive and was batting just .179 in his first 17 games as the calendar flipped to September. But the left-handed hitter ended the year on a strong note by registering multiple hits in six of the eight games he played in.

All told, Mayer slashed .265/.379/.449 with four doubles, one triple, four homers, 13 runs driven in, 15 runs scored, one stolen base, 17 walks, and 29 strikeouts in 25 games (116 plate appearances) with Greenville. Between the two Class-A affiliates, he hit a respectable .280/.399/.489 to go along with 30 doubles, two triples, 13 home runs, 53 RBIs, 61 runs scored, 17 stolen bases, 68 walks, and 107 strikeouts across 91 games spanning 424 total trips to the plate.

As a result of such a productive season, Mayer was recently named to Baseball America’s Age 19 Prospect All-Star Team. He and fellow 2021 draftees Harry Ford, Jordan Lawlar, and James Wood were all recognized for what they did during their age-19 seasons.

On the other side of the ball, Mayer was coming off a debut season in the Florida Complex League in which he committed 10 errors in just 177 2/3 innings at shortstop. He later told The Athletic’s Jen McCaffrey that improving defensively had “been a focal point of his offseason work” and he put that on display this year.

In Salem, Mayer made 10 errors over 505 1/3 innings at his primary position and was named the best defensive shortstop in the Carolina League. In Greenville, the 6-foot-3, 188-pounder logged 189 innings at short and committed just two errors there. While defensive metrics for minor-leaguers are not made public, Mayer did see his fielding percentage rise from .956 with the Red Sox to .974 with the Drive.

Mayer, who turns 20 in December, is currently regarded by Baseball America, MLB Pipeline, and SoxProspects.com as the No. 1 prospect in Boston’s farm system. In terms of top-100 prospect rankings, Baseball America has him at No. 12, MLB Pipeline has him at No. 7, and FanGraphs has him at No. 19.

It goes without saying that Mayer is an exciting player who possesses All-Star potential. While the native Californian is still a ways away from making it to the major-leagues, he is projected to return to Greenville next spring. Depending on how things go there, he could make it up to Double-A Portland by the end of the 2023 campaign.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Gwinn Davis/Greenville Drive)

Red Sox have No. 11 farm system in MLB, per Baseball America’s latest rankings

The Red Sox have the No. 11 farm system in Major League Baseball, according to Baseball America’s midseason organization talent rankings.

Ranking behind the likes of the Orioles, Dodgers, Guardians Diamondbacks, Reds, Rangers, Cardinals, Mets, Pirates, and Rockies, the Sox are exactly where they stood prior to Opening Day.

In their most-recent top 100 prospects rankings, Baseball America placed three Boston minor-leaguers within its top 30. Shortstop Marcelo Mayer leads the pack at No. 12, while right-hander Brayan Bello and first baseman Triston Casas follow at No. 21 and No. 28, respectively.

Ceddanne Rafaela, who is in the midst of a breakout season and represented the Red Sox at the All-Star Futures Game in Los Angeles, entered Baseball America’s top 100 last month and is currently regarded as the 82nd-ranked prospect in the game.

Nick Yorke, Boston’s first-round draft selection in 2020, was ranked by Baseball America as the No. 31 prospect in baseball coming into the 2022 season but has since fallen off the list completely. He is, however, batting .294/.342/.529 (127 wRC+) in his last eight games with High-A Greenville.

Baseball America notes that Mayer “looks even more like the potential star many pegged him as in the 2021 draft,” while adding that Rafaela’s breakout “has lessened the blow” of Yorke falling off the top 100.

Beyond Mayer, Bello, Casas, Rafaela, and Yorke, “there is solid depth throughout the Red Sox system, but a majority of the upside lies among a group of teenagers in rookie ball.”

Some of those teenagers in rookie ball would include Dominican outfielder Miguel Bleis, 2022 draft selections Mikey Romero, Cutter Coffey, and Roman Anthony, right-hander Elmer Rodriguez-Cruz, and shortstops Freili Encarnacion and Luis Ravelo.

Though he is no longer in rookie ball, Blaze Jordan does not turn 20 until December and is ranked by Baseball America as the top power hitter and No. 10 prospect in Boston’s farm system.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer and Chaim Bloom: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer earns Carolina League Player of the Week honors

Top Red Sox prospect Marcelo Mayer has been named the Carolina League Player of the Week for the week of June 27 – July 3, Minor League Baseball announced on Tuesday.

In Low-A Salem’s last series on the road against the Lynchburg Hillcats, Mayer went 10-for-23 (.435) across five games with five doubles, two home runs, five RBIs, seven runs scored, one stolen base, three walks, and six strikeouts. On the 2022 season as a whole, the left-handed hitting shortstop is slashing a robust .291/.376/.522 with 21 doubles, seven homers, 29 runs driven in, 32 runs scored, 11 stolen bases, 25 walks, and 58 strikeouts over 44 games spanning 210 trips to the plate.

Among qualified Carolina League hitters, Mayer ranks eighth in batting average, 10th in on-base percentage, third in slugging percentage, third in OPS (.898), fifth in isolated power (.231), and third in wRC+ (145), per FanGraphs.

Defensively, Mayer has unsurprisingly seen all his playing time on the field this season come at shortstop. The 6-foot-3, 190 pounder has logged 336 1/3 innings at the position and has committed a total of six errors.

Mayer, 19, is currently regarded by Baseball America as the No. 1 prospect in Boston’s farm system. The Red Sox originally selected the California-born infielder with the fourth overall pick in last year’s draft out of Eastlake High School in Chula Vista.

As encouraging as Mayer’s first full season in pro ball has been thus far, it has not come without its bumps. A sprained right wrist required a stint on Salem’s 7-day injured list and resulted in Mayer being limited to just five games in the month of May.

Since returning from the IL on May 30, though, Mayer has posted a .903 OPS over his last 27 games. He also becomes the third consecutive Red Sox prospect to earn Carolina League Player of the Week honors, joining the likes of Niko Kavadas (now in Greenville) and Blaze Jordan.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Top Red Sox prospect Marcelo Mayer doubles in return to Low-A Salem’s lineup

Top Red Sox prospect Marcelo Mayer returned to Low-A Salem’s lineup on Monday after spending the last 10 days on the injured list due to a right wrist sprain.

Batting third and starting at shortstop, Mayer went 1-for-3 with one double, walk, one strikeout, one RBI, and two runs scored in Salem’s 6-2 win over the Columbia Fireflies at Carillion Clinic Field.

Monday marked the first time Mayer had played in a game since May 19 and just the fifth time he had done so since April 23. The 19-year-old had been dealing with nagging soreness in his right wrist since late April. He traveled to Boston to undergo further testing on that wrist last weekend and an MRI revealed that there was no significant damage.

Following Monday’s performance, the right-handed hitting Mayer is now batting .333/.391/.513 on the season with 11 doubles, one home run, 14 RBIs, 11 runs scored, four stolen bases, eight walks, and 24 strikeouts over 18 games spanning 87 plate appearances.

The Red Sox originally selected Mayer with the fourth overall pick in last year’s amateur draft out Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, Calif. The California native is currently regarded by Baseball America as the top prospect in Boston’s farm system and the No. 12 prospect in all of baseball.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

MRI reveals Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer has sprained wrist, but shortstop ‘is expected to resume baseball activities soon’

After being placed on Low-A Salem’s 7-day injured list last Friday, top Red Sox prospect Marcelo Mayer traveled to Boston over the weekend to undergo further testing on his sore right wrist.

An MRI revealed that Mayer had indeed sustained a sprain, Red Sox director of player development told The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier on Tuesday. While there is no timetable for his return, the shortstop is expected to resume baseball activities in the very near future, per Speier and MassLive.com’s Christopher Smith.

Mayer was selected by Boston with the fourth overall pick in last year’s draft out of Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, Calif. The left-handed hitter has slashed .333/.386/.507 with 10 doubles, one home run, 13 RBIs, nine runs scored, four stolen bases, seven walks, and 23 strikeouts over 17 games (83 plate appearances) in his first full professional season with Salem.

Listed at 6-foot-3 and 188 pounds, Mayer first began experiencing wrist soreness in late April, which led to him being sidelined for more than two weeks after playing against the Charleston RiverDogs on April 23.

Upon returning to Salem’s lineup on May 10, the soreness persisted and Mayer was limited to just four games before officially being placed on the injured list on May 20.

The 19-year-old is currently regarded by Baseball America as the top prospect in Boston’s farm system as well as the 12th-ranked prospect in all of baseball.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer placed on injured list due to wrist sprain; shortstop is in Boston to undergo testing

The Salem Red Sox have placed shortstop Marcelo Mayer on the 7-day injured list due to a sprained right wrist, per SoxProspects.com’s Chris Hatfield. As noted by Hatfield, Mayer shared on his Instagram story that he is currently in Boston to undergo further testing on his wrist.

Mayer has been dealing with a recurring wrist issue since late last month. After playing against the Charleston RiverDogs on April 23, the 19-year-old did not appear in another game for Low-A Salem until May 10.

As was first reported by The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier, the Red Sox originally attributed that 17-day absence to workload management before later revealing that Mayer had been experiencing minor soreness in his right wrist, which further delayed his return to action.

Upon returning to Salem’s lineup as designated hitter on May 10, the left-handed hitting infielder went 6-for-18 (.333) at the plate with four doubles, three RBIs, one stolen base, one walk, and six strikeouts over four games. His last appearance came against the Lynchburg Hillcats this past Thursday.

On Sunday, Speier confirmed that Mayer is indeed in Boston to undergo testing on his wrist while also noting that he has “experienced ongoing soreness- no increase in severity – but the fact that it hasn’t gone away led to the decision to put him on the injured list and re-evaluate.”

Mayer, the fourth overall pick in last year’s draft out of Eastlake High School in Chula Vista, is currently regarded by Baseball America as the top prospect in Boston’s farm system.

It has been an eventful first full season in pro ball for the California native, who is batting .333/.386/.507 (147 wRC+) with one home run, 13 RBIs, and four stolen bases across 17 games (83 plate appearances) on the 2022 campaign as a whole.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer returns to Low-A Salem’s lineup

Top Red Sox prospect Marcelo Mayer returned to Low-A Salem’s lineup for the first time since April 23 on Tuesday morning.

Batting third and serving as designated hitter, Mayer went 1-for-4 with a single, two strikeouts, and a stolen base in Salem’s 1-0 win over the Delmarva Shorebirds at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium.

Mayer’s 3 1/2 week absence initially came as a result of what the Red Sox described as workload management. During that time, however, the 19-year-old shortstop began experiencing minor soreness in his right wrist that further delayed his return to action.

According to The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier, the Sox preferred to wait things out with Mayer and have him back at full strength as opposed to having him “running uphill for the rest of 2022.”

Including Tuesday’s performance, Mayer is now batting .328/.388/.475 with six doubles, one home run, 10 RBIs, nine runs scored, four stolen bases, six walks, and 19 strikeouts through 14 games (67 plate appearances) this season. Tuesday marked just the second time this year the left-handed hitter has been used as Salem’s DH.

The Red Sox originally selected Mayer with the fourth overall pick in last year’s amateur draft, so this is the Southern California native’s first full professional season. He is currently regarded by Baseball America as the No. 1 prospect in Boston’s farm system and the 14th-ranked prospect in all of baseball.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer dealing with minor right wrist soreness; shortstop has not played since April 23

Top Red Sox prospect Marcelo Mayer has not appeared in a game for Low-A Salem since April 23 and is currently dealing with minor right wrist soreness, according to The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier.

Per Speier, Mayer’s absence initially came as a result of team-implemented workload management, but has since developed soreness in his right wrist that will keep him sidelined through the end of the weekend.

Boston’s director of player development, Brian Abraham, told Speier that the club is hopeful Mayer will not land on the injured list and will instead be able to return to action for Salem’s next series against Myrtle Beach that begins on Tuesday. He also said that Mayer has still been able to participate in baseball activities, including swinging the bat, despite his wrist ailment.

Mayer, 19, is currently regarded by Baseball America as the top prospect in Boston’s farm system and the No. 15 prospect in all of baseball. The Red Sox originally selected the California-born shortstop with the fourth overall pick in last summer’s amateur draft.

After signing with the Sox for $6.664 million, Mayer made his professional debut in the rookie-level Florida Complex League and stood out there. To begin his first full season as a pro, the left-handed hitter has batted .333/.397/.491 (148 wRC+) with six doubles, one home run, 10 RBIs, nine runs scored, three stolen bases, six walks, and 17 strikeouts over 13 games (63 plate appearances) with Salem.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer off to quick start with Low-A Salem

Marcelo Mayer’s first full season in pro ball is off to a promising start.

With the first weekend of the 2022 minor-league season in the books, Mayer finds himself batting .538 (7-for-13)/.538/.692 with two doubles, six RBIs, one run scored, no walks, and one strikeout over his first three games (13 plate appearances) with Low-A Salem.

Donning the No. 10 with the Salem Red Sox, the left-handed hitter collected two hits on Friday, three hits on Saturday, and two hits in Sunday’s series finale against the Lynchburg Hillcats (Guardians affiliate) at Haley Toyota Field in Virginia.

Through the first weekend of the Low-A season, Mayer ranks first among qualified Carolina League hitters in hits, tied for second in RBIs, third in batting average, ninth in on-base percentage, 19th in slugging percentage, 14th in OPS (1.231), and seventh in wRC+ (209), per FanGraphs.

On the other side of the ball, Mayer made it a point of emphasis over the winter to improve as a defender after committing a team-high 10 errors in the Florida Complex League last year.

So far this year, the 6-foot-3, 190 pound shortstop has yet to commit an error and has already helped turn four double plays while logging 25 innings at the position.

Mayer, 19, comes into the 2022 campaign ranked by both Baseball America and MLB Pipeline as the No. 1 prospect in Boston’s farm system. The Red Sox, of course, selected the California native with the fourth overall pick in last summer’s draft out of Eastlake High School in Chula Vista and signed him for $6.664 million.

After playing in the Florida Complex League in 2021, Mayer did not receive an invite to major-league camp this spring. He did, however, appear in four Grapefruit League games. And while he may have gone hitless (0-for-4) in those contests, Mayer did homer off Nathan Eovaldi in a simulated game at JetBlue Park on March 28.

The Red Sox figure to take things slowly when it comes to the development of their top prospect, who does not turn 20 until December. Based off the kind of start he has gotten off to in Low-A, though, it would not be too surprising if Mayer winds up finishing the season with High-A Greenville.

Boston does have a recent history of doing this sort of thing with its first-round picks. In 2019, 2018 first-rounder Triston Casas spent the majority of the year at Low-A but played two games at High-A to end the season. In 2021, 2020 first-rounder Nick Yorke earned a promotion from Salem to Greenville in late August and appeared in 21 games for the Drive.

Will Mayer follow suit and make the jump at some point in 2022? Only time will tell.

(Picture of Marcelo Mayer: Kelly O’Connor/sittingstill.smugmug.com)