We’re three prospects in, and we have yet to have a close vote. In what was not a surprising outcome, Jason Groome ran away from with the third slot in our community’s voting by taking 70 percent of the outcome.
Groome was, of course, the team’s first round pick this past summer and was taken with the 12th overall selection. At some points last spring, the lefty was in consideration for the number one overall selection and was considered by many to be the most talented player in the draft. Besides the inherent risk in taking high school arms with the first overall pick, Groome also had some vague off-the-field issues to go along with signability questions that made him fall to the Red Sox. He and the team eventually agreed to a $3.65 million signing bonus that was only slightly over the slot value of the pick.
Groome falling may end up being one of the biggest blessings the Red Sox have had in a long time. Scouts are mostly in agreement over his talents. MLB.com rated him as the second-best left-handed pitching prospect in baseball and the number 41 prospect overall. Keith Law, meanwhile, said he was the best southpaw and the 20th best prospect in the game. The reasons? Well, he’s a big, projectable pitcher standing at 6’6" and 220 pounds (per Sox Prospects). On top of that, he throws at least mid-90s with reports of touching 97 with a potentially elite curveball a rough changeup that has potential to be plus. Oh, and he doesn’t turn 19 until August.
Groome is so talented that it’s possible he may have pushed Dave Dombrowski over the top on making some present-day minded deals. Given the executive’s past tendencies, he’d probably trade Anderson Espinoza and Michael Kopech regardless, but having a young and talented prospect like Groome coming through the system certainly didn’t hurt.
And yet, while there’s all of this warranted excitement over the young lefty, he’s barely thrown with the Red Sox organization. After signing last summer, Boston took it easy with him. Remember, high school pitchers certainly aren’t used to anything close to a full workload. Instead, he threw just 6-2/3 innings over three outings, two of which came in the GCL and the other came in Lowell. He still got a chance to show off his tremendous strikeout stuff with 10 strikeouts in that time.
Groome should be heading Greenville’s rotation in 2017, giving us our first extended taste of the young talent of his career. Clearly, all of the potential is there. Now, we can finally see it in action.
I forgot to do this last time, but here is the list thus far.
- Andrew Benintendi
- Rafael Devers
- Jason Groome
The top three weren’t entirely surprising, as that tier was clear. Now, we might start to get to some interesting battles. As always, vote below, and vote only once.