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Fangraphs releases their Red Sox top prospect list

They have 19 players on the list

Michael Chavis
Kelly O’Connor; sittingstill.smugmug.com

We’re already a week into the regular season and the minor-league season is slated to start in a little over 24 hours, but Fangraphs is still churning out their team top prospect lists. We’ll give them a pass, though, because Eric Longenhagen and company have one of the best and most thorough evaluation of team lists. Fangraphs does not have a set number of players they rank, instead ranking everyone they believe has at least a 40 Future Value rating on the 20-80 scouting scale. The Red Sox had 19 players on their list, which was released Wednesday and can be seen in full here. Here’s how they ranked.

  1. Michael Chavis
  2. Jay Groome
  3. Tanner Houck
  4. Sam Travis
  5. Bryan Mata
  6. Jalen Beeks
  7. Darwinzon Hernandez
  8. Danny Diaz
  9. Mike Shawaryn
  10. Cole Brannen
  11. Bobby Dalbec
  12. Josh Ockimey
  13. C.J. Chatham
  14. Ty Buttrey
  15. Alex Scherff
  16. Tzu-Wei Lin
  17. Joan Martinez
  18. Roniel Raudes
  19. Bobby Poyner

I won’t go too deep into their commentary because, well, you can click the link and read it for yourselves. It’s well worth the read. I will touch on a few interesting tidbits from the write-ups, though.

  • Before we get to the write-ups, a few things that stood out with the ranking themselves. For one, Chavis ranked ahead of Groome, something that seemed impossible at the start of the ranking season but has become a more popular opinion as the year has gone on. Additionally, this is the first time we’ve seen someone other than Houck/Mata in the 3/4 spots. Instead, Travis ranked ahead of Mata. Gotta say, I can’t agree with that one. Fangraphs also put an aggressive ranking on Diaz, which probably says more about the system than anything else but is exciting nonetheless.
  • In the Chavis write-up, Longenhagen (the lead prospect writer for Fangraphs) essentially writes off the possibility of Chavis at third base. I agree that’s the case with the Red Sox, though there are some who believe he can stick there for a little while at least. Obviously, it will all come down to the bat for Chavis, though.
  • Longenhagen seems high on Houck, whose write-up includes some talk about the 2017 first rounder’s adjusted mechanics. The belief here is that it’s a positive change and Longenhagen identifies Houck as a potential breakout in 2018.
  • I’ve heard some who believe that Shawaryn will eventually transition to a bullpen role, so it was nice to see Longenhagen say he believes the righty can make a fine back-end starter.
  • The write-up on Scherff isn’t as encouraging as we’ve seen in other places, though there is a mention of a strong work ethic which is always a nice thing to hear about a high school draft pick who is something of a project.
  • Below the rankings, Longenhagen writes up some other prospects. In that section, he mentioned Jake Thompson, who he calls a “stone-cold middle relief prospect.” We’ve certainly heard of relief potential for Thompson, though I’m not sure I’ve heard it put as bluntly as this.
  • Carson Csistulli is featured here, and if you’re not familiar he is a Fangraphs staff member who spends the year highlighting some lesser-known prospects. Corey Kluber is probably his most well-known success story. He picks a favorite prospect not ranked by Longenhagen for every team, and here he picked Tyler Hill based on the outfielders running numbers in 2017.

Go read the entire write-up yourself and let me know what stood out to you.