Lowell Spinners Update: Williams Jerez, Mookie Betts, Pat Light

Goodyear, AZ, USA; A general view of a game between the Cincinnati Reds and Chicago White Sox during the eighth inning at Goodyear Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-US PRESSWIRE

Williams Jerez, CF

Year Age Tm Lg Lev PA 2B 3B HR SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG
2012 20 Lowell NYPL A- 87 3 0 0 3 1 3 13 .241 .276 .277
2 Seasons 228 5 3 0 8 4 9 46 .245 .281 .297
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/16/2012.

Jerez was a 2011 draft pick of the Red Sox, selected in the second round, and he began his professional career shortly after in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League. As with many in the GCL, there isn't much to talk about from his time there, statistically: he posted a 595 OPS, struck out 23 percent of the time, and drew just six walks in 143 plate appearances. At 19, though, he was all about his potential, not what he did just then.

It appears he's still all about potential now that he's 20, as short-season Lowell has been problematic for him in his first 23 games. The center fielder once again has an OPS under 600, and has failed to show much in the way of either patience or power. He has chopped about 10 percent off of his strikeout rate in the early going, though, and that's a positive. It's one thing at a time for toolsy prospects who have yet to develop into what they might become, and since Jerez has been scouted as possessing below-average pitch recognition, consider this a good sign in an otherwise unspectacular 2012 campaign.

Mookie Betts, IF

Year Age Tm Lg Lev PA 2B 3B HR SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG
2012 19 Lowell NYPL A- 102 2 0 0 9 3 4 12 .219 .248 .240
2 Seasons 106 2 0 0 10 3 4 12 .230 .257 .250
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 7/16/2012.

Betts has split time between second base and shortstop while with the Spinners, after logging his only appearance of 2011 at short. This isn't a surprise, as short-season ball sees a lot of bouncing around in terms of playing time, and Betts is one of the players who is expected to slot in as daily as short-season ball allows. He also is in the midst of transferring to second base to be there full-time, as he has loads of defensive potential at the keystone.

He's a little dude, at 5-foot-9 and under 160 pounds, but he's also all of 19 years old, and was drafted out of high school in the fifth round a year ago. He has time to fill out a bit more and add some strength, even if his frame won't allow a ton of that. He has yet to show very much offensively, but, like Jerez, that doesn't mean everything is a terrible sign. He's stolen nine bases in 12 attempts, and has struck out just 12 percent of the time. He's impatient, though, as the walk rate implies (as well as the low punch out rate), and will need to develop better pitch recognition and discipline. That's why he's in short-season ball, though: rarely is a player a finished product in any facet of their game after a month in pro ball.

*****

Pat Light, P

Year Age Tm Lg Lev ERA GS IP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2012 21 Lowell NYPL A- 6.75 2 4.0 19 2.500 20.2 0.0 2.2 9.0 4.0
1 Season 6.75 2 4.0 19 2.500 20.2 0.0 2.2 9.0 4.0
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com
Generated 7/9/2012.

Light was Boston's third pick of the first round, selection at #37 during the sandwich portion of the draft. The six foot, five inch right-hander from Monmouth University is something of a mystery at this point, because if his secondary stuff develops, he just might start, but it if doesn't, he still has the repertoire of a very productive relief piece.

There's some fine symmetry at work if it's the latter, since the departure of relief ace Jonathan Papelbon to the Phillies is what gave Boston the ability to select Light in the draft to begin with. But, as with many pitchers before Light, he'll get the shot to start if for no other reason than to give him more experience as a professional, more innings to work on his craft, with the shift to the bullpen coming when he's shown that's what he's meant for.

He's started two games for Lowell, although short-season starts have a tendency to be two-inning affairs often, and has struck out four in those four frames. The hit rate is a bit absurd for now, but it's four innings, so that's all comment you'll see on that note for now.

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