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Red Sox Minor Lines: Jeter Downs leads the way on a big day for Worcester

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And a couple of sleepers start to make cases for themselves.

Worcester W 10-5

Kiké Hernández, DH: 1-2, 1 HBP, 1 R, 1 K

Danny Santana, LF: 1-4, 1 HR, 1 BB, 2 R, 2 RBI, 1 K

Jarren Duran, CF: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 SB

Yairo Muñoz, 3B: 1-4, 1 RBI, 2 K

Jeter Downs, 2B: 3-4, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, 1 SB, 1 E

Ryan Weber (SP): 6 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 4 K (83 pitches)

Kevin McCarthy (W): 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K (11 pitches)

Brandon Brennan: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K (16 pitches)

It was an eventful day in Worcester with a couple of rehabbing players including Kiké Hernández in the lineup. It was his first rehab appearance and it seems he could be good to go by this coming week’s road trip. Santana is a little bit further off but he’s hitting well, including launching his first homer at Triple-A. And then there was also a very big day for Downs, who is of course one of the top prospects in the organization. He had been struggling early on in this season, and he did make an error in this game (his third of the year) but his efforts at the plate make up for the defensive miscue.

Portland L 1-5

Jeisson Rosario, CF: 1-5, 2 K

Pedro Castellanos, LF: 0-5, 1 K

Triston Casas, 2-4, 1 R

Ronaldo Hernández, C: 1-3, 1 HBP

Grant Williams, 2B: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 CS

AJ Politi (SP; L): 5 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K (92 pitches)

Durbin Feltman: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 3 K (31 pitches)

Politi was one of the more interesting pitchers in the system coming into the year as he seemingly got a bit of helium from the end of 2019 that lasted through the cancelled season into extended spring training. The righty started his career as a reliever before moving to the rotation in the back half of 2019, where he pitched extremely well. This year it’s been more of a mixed back, and the five innings is the deepest he’s managed to go. The strikeouts stuff is clearly there as he’s struck out 16 batters in 13 23 innings, but he’s been hit around some to the tune of 13 hits, though none have left the yard. This was a step in the right direction, though, only allowing two hits and being undone a bit by his defense. He’s a name to watch as the year goes on and he recovers from a tough first start of the season.

Greenville W 8-4

Cameron Cannon, 2B: 2-5

Nick Sogard, SS: 1-5, 1 2B, 1 R, 3 K

Tyler Esplin, RF: 1-4, 1 R, 2 K

Tyreque Reed, 1B: 1-2, 1 HR, 1 BB, 1 HBP, 2 R, 2 RBI, 1 K

Brandon Howlett, 3B: 1-4, 1 R

Alan Marrero, C: 1-3, 1 HR, 1 BB, 2 R, 3 RBI, 1 K

Elih Marrero, DH: 2-4, 2 R

Chase Shugart (SP): 4 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 5 K (50 pitches)

Not a whole lot going on of note in this game, though we should give a couple quick shoutouts to guys we’ve already covered recently. The first is Cannon, the team’s first selection in the 2019 draft who is somewhat quietly off to a very nice start. This game marks a third straight multi-hit effort, and he’s had four in the last five games and five in the last seven. Meanwhile, Reed, who was taken in the minor-league portion of this past winter’s Rule 5 draft, is showing off his big power. He’s only hitting .238 but his OPS is up at 1.122 thanks to the power — he has five hits, one of which was a double and three of which were homers — and patience, with a walk rate in double digits. I’m thinking of him as a right-handed Josh Ockimey for now.

Salem W 5-3

Gilberto Jimenez, CF: 2-4, 1 R, 1 SB

Wil Dalton, LF: 1-2, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 K

Nick Decker, RF: 0-2, 2 BB, 1 R, 1 K

Alex Erro, C: 2-3, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 SB

Mtthew Lugo, SS: 1-4, 1 K, 1 SB

Ceddanne Rafaela, 3B/2B: 1-4, 1 K

Aldo Ramirez (SP): 4 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 3 K (72 pitches)

Erro is becoming a very interesting player on whom to keep an eye as this season progresses. He was a 17th round pick in 2019 and struggled a bit at the plate in his first season as a pro. Since then, though, he’s changed things up a bit, including defensively. Once a utility man who could play all over the infield, he’s been catching for the most part this season. And while he’s been learning a very difficult new position, he’s also been hitting the crap out of the ball. After this big game, he is up to a .333 average with a .915 OPS. It’s too early to call this anything other than a nice hot streak, but it’s worth monitoring, especially if he sticks behind the dish.

Player of the Day: Jeter Downs

Player of the Day Chart