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Red Sox Minor Lines: Kiké Hernández looks ready

A two-homer day leads the system.

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Worcester W 7-4

Kiké Hernández, CF: 2-4, 2 HR, 2 R, 5 RBI

Jack López, SS: 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 1 RBI

Jarren Duran, LF: 1-3, 1 2B, 1 BB

Yairo Muñoz, 3B: 0-4, 1 K

Marcus Wilson, RF: 2-4, 2 2B, 1 R, 2 K

Jeter Downs, 2B: 0-3, 1 BB, 2 K

Raynel Espinal (SP; W): 5 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 4 BB, 3 K (91 pitches)

Marcus Walden (H): 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K (18 pitches)

Colten Brewer: 1 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 K (23 pitches)

Kaleb Ort (S): 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K (15 pitches)

I think Kiké Hernández may have his timing back well enough to return to action on the big-league club. Sunday marked the second day of his rehab assignment in Worcester, and he had a monster of a game. It started in his second at bat when he came through with a big two-out grand slam (the first in team history), and then he’d add another solo shot in the seventh. The Red Sox are looking for some of their offensive depth to come back, and by the looks of it, Hernández will be able to get back to the top of their lineup by Tuesday’s series opener against the Blue Jays. We should also shout out Walden for his start to the season, as he is up to 6 23 scoreless innings with seven strikeouts and two walks.

Portland L 3-5

Jeisson Rosario, CF: 0-4, 1 K, 1 E

Joey Meneses, LF: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 K

Triston Casas, 2-4, 1 R, 1 K

Johan Mieses, RF: 1-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI, 2 K

Ronaldo Hernández, C: 1-3, 1 HR, 1 HBP, 1 R, 1 RBI

Ryan Fitzgerald, 3B: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 K

Frank German (SP; L): 3.2 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 K (74 pitches)

Zack Kelly: 2.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 4 K (57 pitches)

Joan Martinez: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K (14 pitches)

German is a new pitcher in the organization, having come over from the Yankees in the trade that also brought Adam Ottavino to the Red Sox. Right now, German is largely a two-pitch pitcher with his fastball and changeup, though there is a breaking ball he is trying to develop as well. The early returns this year overall have not been great, as he’s now gone just 7 23 innings over three starts, allowing six earned runs but 15 runs total to go with just two strikeouts and seven walks. Most expect him to land in the bullpen and anyway, and as a 23-year-old he’s the type of player I wouldn’t be afraid to make that move with sooner than later, particularly with numbers like that.

Greenville W 10-9

Nick Sogard, 2B: 2-5, 1 R, 1 CS

Christian Koss, SS: 4-5, 2 2B, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 E

Tyler Esplin, RF: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 R

Tyreque Reed, 1B: 1-4, 1 HR, 1 BB, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 K

Brandon Howlett, 3B: 2-3, 1 R, 3 RBI, 1 E

Devlin Granberg, DH: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 R, 4 RBI

Jay Groome (SP): 3 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 K (50 pitches)

Brendan Cellucci: 1 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 3 K (23 pitches)

Jacob Wallace (W; BS): 1 IP, 2 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 0 K (23 pitches)

This was a nice day for the Greenville offense, and particularly for Koss, who we talked about not to long ago in relation to his slow start. I want to focus a bit on the pitching today. For Groome, it was nice to see him back on the mound after he left early last time out, being hit with a line drive. The results weren’t great here, but four strikeouts to one walk isn’t too bad. What was too bad was the performance from Wallace. He’s probably the best pure relief prospect in the system, but it’s been a tough start to the year for the righty. With this latest effort, he’s up to a 12.00 ERA over six innings with seven strikeouts and two walks, but also four home runs already.

Salem L 1-2

Gilberto Jimenez, CF: 2-4, 1 K

Nick Yorke, 2B: 0-4, 3 K

Nick Northcut, 3B: 0-4, 1 K

Nick Decker, RF: 1-4, 1 E

Jeremy Wu-Yelland (SP): 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K (53 pitches)

It’s probably about time we talk about Yorke, last year’s first round pick who had been picking up steam in terms of hype over the last few months, dating back to his appearance at the Alternate Site late last summer. He impressed there, and again in camp, but the start to his minor-league career has been rough. We’ve talked a bit about his defense already — he’s made five errors in eight games at second base — but the offense has been rough too. He’s played 10 games in which he’s hit, and his line right now is .150/.209/.175. It’s far too early to write off a first round pick, obviously, but this is one to keep an eye on. It’s always useful to see how young players respond to adversity.

Player of the Day: Kiké Hernández

Player of the Day Chart