Red Sox’ Ninth-Ranked Prospect Jarren Duran Promoted to Double-A Portland

Less than a full calendar year after being selected with the 220th overall pick in the seventh round of the 2018 amateur draft, the Red Sox have promoted speedy prospect Jarren Duran from High-A Salem to Double-A Portland, according to SoxProspects’ Chris Hatfield.

Duran, 22, is currently ranked as Boston’s ninth-best prospect, according to MLB.com.

Drafed out of Long Beach State in 2018, the California native has done nothing but hit since reporting to Low-A Lowell last June.

In 67 total games split between the New York-Penn and South Atlantic Leagues, Duran made a great first impression by slashing .357/.394/.516 with three home runs, 35 RBI, and 24 stolen bases.

This season, after breaking minor league camp with the High-A Salem Red Sox, the 2018 organizational All-Star came out of the gate running, leading the Carolina League, and all of minor league baseball for that matter, in hitting with a .387 batting average.

He also posted a .456 on-base and .543 slugging percentage to go along with four homers, 19 runs driven in, and 18 swiped bags over 50 games played.

Without a doubt, Duran is the most intriguing outfield prospect in the Red Sox’ system. How he adjusts to Eastern League pitching will be something to keep an eye on moving forward.

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Top #RedSox Pitching Prospect Darwinzon Hernandez Racks up Career-High 11 Strikeouts for Double-A Portland

While the the Red Sox were enjoying an off day on Thursday, the club’s top pitching prospect, Darwinzon Hernandez, put together a career night in his start for Double-A Portland.

Making his sixth start of the season for the Sea Dogs, the left-hander surrendered four runs, three of which were earned, on five hits and two walks to go along with a career-best 11 strikeouts over a career-best seven innings of work against the Reading Fightin Phils Thursday.

Outside of a rough third inning in which all four of those initial Reading runs came around to score, Hernandez did not yield a single hit from the first until the start of the middle of the third, and then again from the middle of the fourth until the conclusion of his seventh and final frame.

In that seventh inning, the 23-year-old hurler capped off his outing on a high note by fanning four Fightin Phils thanks to a wild pitch that allowed one hitter to reach first on his own part.

The Sea Dogs eventually dropped this contest by a final score of 8-2, and Hernandez was thus hit with his third losing decision of the year.

Ranked as Boston’s third-best prospect overall, we have already gotten a sneak peek of what Hernandez could bring to the table at the big league level earlier last month, where in the second of a day-night doubleheader against the Detroit Tigers, the southpaw scattered four hits and one walk while punching out four over 2.1 innings of relief.

He served as the club’s 26th man for the second game of that doubleheader, and was sent back to Double-A Portland right after.

Through the six starts made with the Sea Dogs in 2019, Hernandez has posted an ERA of 4.10 and a batting average against of .198 in addition to 36 strikeouts and 21 free passes over 26.1 total innings of work.

Out of spring training, the plan was to let the Venezuela native develop as a starting pitcher rather than rush him up in a relief role, both of which he has experience in.

As of now, I would say the Red Sox are sticking to this plan, so don’t expect to see Hernandez up in Boston anytime soon barring any unforeseen circumstances.

#RedSox Prospect Bobby Dalbec Has Hit Four Home Runs in Last Two Games for Double-A Portland

While the Red Sox have been in the midst of a five-game winning streak, perhaps you haven’t seen or heard what the club’s third-ranked prospect Bobby Dalbec has been up to lately with Double-A Portland.

Over his last two games, the 23-year-old has mashed four home runs, three of which came in an 8-7 loss to the Trenton Thunder on Saturday, and the fourth coming in a 5-2 win over the Hartford Yard Goats Monday night.

Taken by Boston in the fourth round of the 2016 amateur draft, Dalbec got off to a bit of a slow start with the Sea Dogs after being invited to Red Sox big league camp for the first time earlier this spring.

As recently as May 3rd, the University of Arizona product was slashing just .189/.362/.311 with two home runs and nine RBI on the season, but has since heated up in a monumental way.

Since the beginning of last week, May 6th, Dalbec has gone 9-for-his-last-19 to go along with five homers and nine RBI, raising his slugging percentage to a respectable .519 in a five-game span.

Dalbec was named Eastern League Player of the Week for May 6th-12th on Monday.

Given the amount of infield depth the Red Sox have at the moment, it seems unlikely that we’d see the Dalbec make his big league debut in 2019, but a promotion to Triple-A Pawtucket sometime this summer does seem in reach for Dalbec if this offensive run persists.

#RedSox Halt Dustin Pedroia’s Rehab Assignment Due to Minor Left Knee Soreness

Nearly two weeks after sending him out on one for the second time this season, the Red Sox have returned second baseman Dustin Pedroia from his rehab assignment with Double-A Portland due to what the club is describing as “minor left knee soreness”, per multiple reports.

Pedroia, 35, was scratched from the Sea Dogs’ lineup against the Trenton Thunder this past Saturday for essentially the same reason.

Placed on the 10-day injured list back on April 19th after appearing in six games for the Red Sox, the veteran infielder was sent out to Portland on May 2nd, where he went 4-for-16 with one run and one RBI over a six-game span.

According to the Boston Globe’s Pete Abraham, the plan now is for Pedroia to go back out on another assignment following this delay. This works out for the team, because as Abraham notes, 12 of the 20 days available for a rehab assignment had already been used up, so this now gives Pedroia and the Red Sox more time to prepare.

In Pedroia’s place, the Red Sox currently have rookie Michael Chavis and Eduardo Nunez available to man second base when necessary, while Brock Holt and Tzu-Wei Lin, like Pedroia, remain on Boston’s injured list.

The timetable for the California native’s return to the majors is not yet known, but that doesn’t mean he still can’t contribute to the big league club when healthy.

All on Twitter, I see people indirectly urging Pedroia to retire due to these extended knee issues, hoping the remainder of his six-year, $85 million contract could somehow be voided if he did indeed hang them up.

I don’t know where things took a sour turn, I really don’t. But Dustin Pedroia deserved more respect than that. Literally the best second baseman not named Bobby Doerr to ever don a Red Sox uniform.

The bottom line is: show that man some respect.

#RedSox and Portland Sea Dogs Extend Affiliation Agreement Through 2022.

Earlier Tuesday, the Boston Red Sox announced that they had extended their player development contract with their Double A affiliate Portland Sea Dogs for the next four seasons.

Originally affiliated with the then-Florida Marlins, the Sea Dogs have been affiliated with the Red Sox since the start of the 2003 season.

Since then, the Eastern League club has won a pair of division titles in 2005 and 2014 as well as their lone league title in 2006.

As things stand right now, the Red Sox’s 40-man roster includes 24 players who came up through the pipeline by way of Portland.

Notable alumni include Sea Dogs Hall of Famer Dustin Pedroia, Mookie Betts, Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, Andrew Benintendi, Blake Swihart, Christian Vazquez, and Matt Barnes.

On the same day this news broke, the Sea Dogs also introduced former MLB catcher Joe Oliver as their 13th manager in the club’s history. Oliver, 53, has been with the Red Sox organization in a minor league managing capacity since 2014.

 

Eduardo Rodriguez Officially Set to Rejoin #RedSox Rotation in Chicago This Weekend.

Earlier today, I wrote about how Eduardo Rodriguez looked great in his second rehab start in Portland and how his return to the Red Sox rotation in the coming days was imminent.

Well, now we have confirmation from Red Sox manager Alex Cora himself that Rodriguez will be starting against the Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field this Saturday.

So, there you have it. After spraining his right ankle on July 14th, it will have taken the left-hander exactly seven weeks to return to a big league mound once we reach Saturday.

In his career against the White Sox, both of which have come at Fenway Park, Rodriguez owns a 3.75 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP in a total of 12 innings pitched.

Opposite of the Venezuela native on Saturday will be another left-hander in Chicago’s Carlos Rodon, who has surrendered two runs or fewer in 11 of his 14 starts this season.

Some other Red Sox injury-related news:

Eduardo Rodriguez Tosses Another Four Scoreless Innings in Second Rehab Start in Portland.

Last Monday, on August 20th, the Red Sox sent LHP Eduardo Rodriguez out on a rehab assignment to Double A Portland.

In his first in-game action since spraining his right ankle on July 14th, the 25-year-old failed to give up a single run on just one hit while walking two and fanning eight in four frames of work against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.

Great first step for Rodriguez, and he was back out there Monday night for the Sea Dogs once again.

Pitching another four innings yesterday, the Venezuela native held the opposition scoreless on two hits, two walks, and six strikeouts in a 12-6 win for Portland.

Catching Rodriguez on Monday was Christian Vazquez, who has been on the 10-day disabled list since July 8th and is working his way back from a finger fracture on his right hand.

Batting third in the Sea Dogs lineup, Vazquez went 1/2 with a sacrifice fly and two RBI double to finish with three runs driven in on the night. He also caught the first five innings.

On the season with the big league club, Rodriguez is 11-3 with a 3.44 ERA in 19 games started. He has not surrendered a run in his last 19 innings pitched and is expected to rejoin the Red Sox rotation in Chicago this weekend.

Vazquez, on the other hand, is slashing .213/.249/.300 with three home runs and 14 RBI in 60 games played. He is expected to catch again with the Pawtucket Red Sox tonight and be activated this weekend as well.