There isn't much to love about this time of year if you're a baseball fan, but that's precisely why we should be thankful that prospect lists and the like are released now to fill that void. Keith Law is in the midst of unveiling all of his prospect thoughts over at ESPN, and on Wednesday, that meant releasing his organizational prospect rankings. The Red Sox, in spite of the promotion of a few high-profile prospects, rank fifth in the majors according to Law.
Xander Bogaerts and Mookie Betts both likely made it to the majors for good in 2014, and the likes of Anthony Ranaudo and Allen Webster saw their stock fall and were traded, but the Sox still have plenty of quality prospects where those came from. Not only has Blake Swihart become one of the top -- if not the top -- catching prospects in the game, but the Sox also have 20-year-old Manuel Margot at High-A after hitting .293/.356/.462 with quality defense in center as a teenager. They have Rafael Devers, who despite being just 17 in 2014, crushed short-season pitching to the tune of .322/.404/.506 -- the average OPS in the two leagues he played in were 671 and 677, respectively, while the average age of the players managing that was 18 and 20.
Boston also introduced a few new talents through the 2014 draft, bringing in Michael Chavis and Michael Kopech, and scored big during the July 2 international signing period with Chris Acosta and Anderson Espinoza. Sam Travis, Wendell Rijo, Teddy Stankiewicz, and Javier Guerra aren't as big of prospects names, but they're intriguing all the same, and 2013 first-round selection Trey Ball began to right the ship after a tough start to the year as well.
It's not just the lower levels, either, as the Sox also have Henry Owens and Eduardo Rodriguez in the upper levels of their system to go along with back-end starting depth such as Brian Johnson and Edwin Escobar. Matt Barnes is still around, too, and if he can't hack it as a starter, there is likely a significant career in relief ahead of him.
It's not a perfect system, but it's a deep one that has still managed to keep serious potential within it even after a flurry of promotions and trades. A whole lot of the high-end talent is still a few years away at the least, but there is plenty of help sitting in Triple-A Pawtucket at the moment to help offset the emptier Double-A level, and all the youth on the actual Red Sox should help with that little interruption, too.