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MLB ranks Red Sox' Anderson Espinoza one of 10 best RHP prospects

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The Red Sox have promoted quite a few arms, but they still have a serious one sitting in the minors.

MLB.com

The Red Sox are still loaded with prospects, as we've discussed in recent months. They're a little light on the pitching side of things, as far as prospect eligibility goes, anyway: while Henry Owens and Eduardo Rodriguez are still very young and still full of promise, neither of them are actually prospects anymore.

Boston still has some young arms in the minors worth paying attention to, though, most notably Anderson Espinoza. Signed during the 2014-2015 international signing period for a bonus that used up basically all of the allotted Red Sox budget, Espinoza debuted in 2015 as 17-year-old in the Dominican Summer League, but would dominate to such a degree that he finished the season at Low-A Greenville.

MLB has recognized this achievement and Espinoza's potential, ranking him the number 10 right-handed pitching prospect in the game. He's behind some serious competition, too, with Lucas Giolito, Tyler Glasnow, Alex Reyes, and more coming in ahead of him. Espinoza also has the potential to rank much higher than this in the future, but the fact he made it at all after just 3-1/3 innings of full-season ball is notable on its own.

Jim Callis, who compiled the rankings for MLB, wrote that Espinoza hit "triple digits with his fastball and show[ed] advanced secondary pitches and command" in 2015. His fastball not only has velocity, but also sink, and his mechanics are expected to help him stick as a starter. It's hard not to notice when a 17-year-old is showing advanced anything at this stage of his career, and with Dave Dombrowski now in charge of the Red Sox, one wonders how quickly Espinoza will rise through the system.

Dombrowski doesn't have a history of rushing pitchers, necessarily, but he doesn't let them linger if they're showing themselves capable of taking on more advanced competition. So, if Espinoza starts mowing down the opposition in full-season ball like he did in the short-season varieties, he might not be in Low-A for very long as an 18-year-old.