I've always found myself a fan of plugging holes with minor leaguers instead of paying for free agents. However, I understand the need for what has transpired this fall/winter. NESN's ratings, the losses of two sluggers, payroll room, etc.
But, here's a question to debate: how comfortable would you be with the current minor leaguers if they had to step in mid-2011 or at the start of 2012?
Assuming each player learns and grows at their same rates, where do they stand to end up as a part of the Red Sox in the big leagues?
Here are the players projected this year or next year and my predictions:
Ryan Kalish: Starting right fielder for Boston in 2012, multiple stints in 2011
Josh Reddick: 4th OF for Boston in 2012, a stint or two in 2011
Daniel Nava: OF depth in Pawtucket in 2012
Felix Doubront: Lefty in bullpen in 2011 with spot starts, 5th Starter for Boston in 2012
Lars Anderson: Backup 1B for an NL team in 2012
Luis Exposito: Catcher for Pawtucket in 2012
Michael Bowden: One or two stints in Boston in 2011, bullpen for another team in 2012
Jose Iglesias: Starting shortstop for Pawtucket in 2012 with a few call-ups to see him hit MLB pitching