Greenville Drive update: Pat Light, Kyle Kraus, Mookie Betts

J. Meric

Pat Light is hurt, Kraus is hurting opponents' numbers, and Betts finally busted out.

Pat Light, RHP

Year Age Tm Lg Lev ERA GS IP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2013 22 Greenville SALL A 8.28 6 25.0 125 2.000 13.3 1.4 4.7 8.6 1.85
2 Seasons 5.04 18 55.1 242 1.482 10.4 0.8 2.9 8.8 3.00
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/28/2013.

Light hasn't pitched since May 22, an appearance where he faced just one batter before he was removed with hamstring cramps. He hasn't been placed on the minor-league disabled list, so it doesn't sound like it's anything to worry about, but the Sox won't rush him back before he's ready, either. A few days off probably wouldn't hurt so he can work on improving on what's been a rough 2013 campaign. Light's just 22, barely out of college, and has little professional experience, so it's tough to get too worked up over this. Add that to the fact he's likely a back-end reliever in the long run, and forgiving him for failures as a starter becomes even easier.

That being said, you still want to see him dominate at the lower levels until competition forces him to make the switch. He'll need to improve his command and control in order to avoid homers and walks, respectively, so hopefully he comes back fully healthy and ready to trend in that direction.

*****

Kyle Kraus, RHP

Year Age Tm Lg Lev ERA G IP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2013 23 Greenville SALL A 1.10 11 16.1 62 0.673 5.0 0.0 1.1 9.9 9.00
2 Seasons 2.27 27 43.2 178 1.008 7.8 0.4 1.2 8.5 6.83
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/28/2013.

Kraus has been pretty filthy to this point, at least in terms of results. He has already moved over to the bullpen, and has continued what he started in his pro debut last summer by limiting walks at an absurd rate, only this time doing so while missing tons of bats. He's also inducing three times as many ground outs as air outs, and the combination of all of these things is how he's gone more than a month without giving up a run.

He's allowed all of a two on the season, the last coming on April 23, six appearances and eight innings ago. It sounds less impressive that way, but still: going a month without giving up a run while pitching regularly is worth your attention. It'll be interesting to see how well his command and control game works at higher levels, as Kraus was not expected to miss bats, even if it was believed he'd limit the free passes. We won't know until he gets there, of course, so for now, enjoy his baffling of low-level hitters.

*****

Mookie Betts, 2B

Year Age Tm Lg Lev PA 2B 3B HR SB CS BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2013 20 Greenville SALL A 195 9 1 8 11 1 38 24 .273 .415 .500 .915
3 Seasons 491 17 2 8 32 5 70 54 .271 .378 .381 .759
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 5/28/2013.

When last we checked in on Betts, he was hitting .150/.343/.263 in 105 plate appearances. The last 90 have gone pretty okay, if you couldn't tell: he's now hitting .273/.415/.500, has 14 more walks than strikeouts, 11 steals against one caught stealing, and 18 extra-base hits in 43 games. Oh, he's also just 20 years old in his first taste of full-season ball.

He had been showing plenty of patience before his offensive outburst, but it was clear he needed to learn what to swing at instead of just what not to swing at. Sure, he traded in some of that ridiculous early season walk rate in order to get here, but in a matter of three weeks he brought his OPS up 310 points. More of this, please: having Betts figure out Low-A at his age would be significant for the Sox' prospect lists.

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