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Red Sox Minor Lines: Hudson Potts makes his season debut

And Brandon Howlett stays hot.

Worcester W 5-2

Jarren Duran, CF: 1-5, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI

Marcus Wilson, RF: 1-4, 1 K, 1 CS

Franchy Cordero, LF: 0-4, 2 K

Michael Chavis, 1B: 1-3, 1 BB

Jeter Downs, SS: 0-4, 1 K

Connor Wong, C: 0-3, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 K

Jonathan Araúz, 2B: 1-3, 1 HR, 1 BB, 1 R, 3 RBI

Yairo Muñoz, 3B: 3-4, 1 R, 1 E

Daniel Gossett (SP): 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 3 K (94 pitches)

Austin Brice (W): 1.1 IP, 0 H, 1 BB, 3 K (27 pitches)

Kaleb Ort (SV): 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K (24 pitches)

There wasn’t a whole lot of major note going on in this game, but rather a handful of quick, notable things. For one, Duran is back with his first homer since returning from Team USA earlier this week. This one was number eight for him on the year. Araúz has been on a bit of a power kick of late, too, with two homers in his last three games. He needs to heat up offensively, so this may be the route to get there. Muñoz is heating up, currently the owner of a six-game hit streak that includes four multi-hit games, and that includes back-to-back three-hit nights. And finally, Ort continues to thrive in this ninth inning, and it’s becoming more and more likely we see him at some point in the majors, though it may not be until next year due to 40-man complications.

Portland L 3-5

Tate Matheny, CF: 2-3, 1 3B, 1 BB, 2 R

Pedro Castellanos, LF: 2-3, 1 BB, 1 R

Triston Casas, 1B: 0-3, 1 BB, 1 RBI

Hudson Potts, 3B: 0-4, 2 K, 1 E

Ronaldo Hernández, C: 0-4, 1 K

Josh Winckowski (SP): 5.2 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 5 K (97 pitches)

We got a debut by a prospect in this game, at least in terms of appearances for a Red Sox affiliate. Potts, who came over in the Mitch Moreland deal last summer, has been dealing with an injury all year and had not been able to play until yesterday. He didn’t get off to a strong start in his return to action, but it was good to just see him out there. Hopefully soon he’ll start to show off that power. On the mound, meanwhile, Winckowski just continues to pitch well in Portland, and showing off a little bit better strikeout numbers than usual, too.

Greenville W 6-2

Christian Koss, SS: 1-5, 1 R, 1 K

Cameron Cannon, 2B: 1-4, 1 R, 1 RBI

Tyler Esplin, LF: 1-3, 1 BB, 2 R, 1 K

Brandon Howlett, DH: 4-4, 3 2B, 2 RBI

Cole Brannen, RF: 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI

Brian Van Belle (SP; W): 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K (44 pitches)

Brendan Celucci: 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K (12 pitches)

It’s been an interesting season for Howlett, who had fallen off the radar a bit coming into this season following a disappointing full-season debut in 2019 followed by nothing in 2020. But it was easy to forget he was a late-round high school pick playing in full-season ball the year after being drafted, which is a tough position to be. He’s still only 21 this season and will be for most of the schedule, and he’s back to more than holding his own. After this four-hit day he’s hitting .283/.390/.485. If you’re looking for a position player to jump on the ground floor with, you still have a chance to do so with Howlett.

Salem L 4-7 (F/10)

Gilberto Jimenez, LF: 0-5, 3 K

Matthew Lugo, SS: 1-5, 1 R, 1 K, 1 SB

Jaxx Groshans, DH: 0-3, 2 BB, 1 R, 1 RBI

Nick Northcut, 3B: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 R, 1 RBI, 2 K

Ceddanne Rafaela, CF: 0-3, 1 BB, 2 K

Ryan Zeferjahn (SP): 3.1 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 2 K (62 pitches)

Jimenez is the best prospect on this roster and one bad stretch is not going to change that, but this has been a bad stretch for the outfield prospect. He kind of flew under the radar somehow early in the year but was still playing well, though that is no longer the case. Right now, he’s struggling, with this appearing to be rock bottom. We hope, at least. Jimenez is now at a .692 OPS on the year (though his .281 batting average looks good, it’s quite empty), and he’s hitting .184/.205/.237 to start the month of June. On top of that, he has seven strikeouts in his last two games. He’s too talented to keep hitting like this, but it would be nice to see him snap out of this funk sooner than later.

Player of the Day: Brandon Howlett

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