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Baseball America ranks 2 Red Sox prospects in Sally League top-20

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The Red Sox have moved a whole lot of prospects up through their farm system the past couple of years, but they still have talent in Low-A ball.

MLB.com

Sure, the Red Sox have moved loads of prospects up through the system and even into the majors in some cases over the last few seasons, but that doesn't mean the well is dry. Baseball America's league-by-league rankings are confirmation of that, as a pair of Red Sox prospects made their way into BA's South Atlantic League top-20, joining the three Red Sox top-10 prospects in the Gulf Coast League to help form another promising wave of youngsters.

9. Manuel Margot, CF

Margot started the year at Low-A Greenville but eventually finished at High-A Salem, despite being just a 19-year-old in his first year of full-season ball. Margot batted .286/.355/.449 over 99 games and 413 plate appearances with Greenville, a line that looks great sans context but is even better with some: Margot was just 19, but the league-average Sally hitter was 21.5 years old, and hit just .261/.330/.381. In Margot's final month with the Drive, he crushed the opposition to the tune of .372/.443/.564, more than earning his late-season promotion to Salem.

He played in just 16 games at High-A, but the early results were good ones. Margot hit .340/.364/.560 with just five strikeouts in 56 plate appearances to go along with a pair of homers and five doubles. Obviously it's a small sample and his discipline will need some work, but he has an impressive handling of the strike zone for his youth that makes him a fit for the top of a lineup, anyway. This is all without getting into his quality defense in center, mind you.

Baseball America suggests Margot could develop into a middle-of-the-order bat, depending on how his power develops, but even if he's "only" a leadoff hitter with above-average defense, that's a player.

17. Wendell Rijo, 2B

Rijo is an intriguing case, as he's just 18 years old and managed to produce a season better than hitters three years his senior in the Sally by batting .254/.348/.416. He was up-and-down all season long, though, either wrecking opposing pitchers as he did in April (911 OPS) or in August (894) or struggling to even get to league-average the rest of the time. His youth explains a lot of that, but as Baseball America points out, he also makes his share of mistakes when "his leg kick gets too long or he gets over his front foot too soon in his swing or he gets caught unaware by an offspeed pitch."

He has plenty of time to refine his swing and approach to be a more consistent player, though, and there are obviously some skills here. Baseball America also believes Rijo has the ability to become an above-average defender at the keystone, so if he can make his contact and power a bit more consistent while flashing some leather at second, he could be a useful big-league player way down the road.