Red Sox

These Red Sox players made Baseball America's new top 100 prospects ranking

These Red Sox players made Baseball America's new top 100 prospects ranking

The Boston Red Sox don't have one of Major League Baseball's best farm systems, and that was evident in Baseball America's latest ranking of the sport's top 100 prospects entering the 2020 season.

The Red Sox have just two prospects in the top 100.

One of Boston's rivals in the American League East, the Tampa Bay Rays, lead all teams with eight prospects in the top 100. Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom played a major role in building the Rays' farm system before he was hired by Boston in October.

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The Red Sox prospect pool has taken a hit in recent years as a result of trades to acquire veteran players. It was the right move, too, as the Sox won the 2018 World Series and also made postseason appearances in 2016 and 2017. Now, it's time to rebuild the homegrown talent pool.

Here's a quick recap of Boston's two prospects in Baseball America's top 100.

No. 70: Triston Casas, 1B
Casas was Boston's first-round draft pick in 2018. He batted .256 with 20 home runs and 81 RBI in 120 games of Single-A baseball in 2019. Baseball America projects his Red Sox debut will come in 2022. He certainly has the size of a major leaguer, though.

No. 75: Bobby Dalbec, 3B
Baseball America projects Dalbec, who was a fourth-round draft pick by Boston in 2016, to make his Fenway Park debut this coming season. The publication also praised Dalbec's power at the plate and defense in the field. He batted .239 with 27 home runs and 73 RBI between Double-A and Triple-A last season. Dalbec should begin the season in Pawtucket, but it wouldn't be surprising to see him in the majors relatively soon. Rafael Devers has established himself as Boston's third baseman of the present and future, but Dalbec also could play left field if needed.

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Red Sox claim RHP Phillips Valdez off waivers, place Dustin Pedroia on 60-day IL

Red Sox claim RHP Phillips Valdez off waivers, place Dustin Pedroia on 60-day IL

The Boston Red Sox have made yet another move to bolster their pitching depth.

On Sunday, they claimed right-hander Phillips Valdez off waivers from the Seattle Mariners. To make room for Valdez, they placed veteran second baseman Dustin Pedroia on the 60-day injured list.


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Valdez, 27, only has 11 games worth of major league experience under his belt. In 2019, he posted a 3.94 ERA and 1.62 WHIP in 16 innings pitched with the Texas Rangers. Valdez was claimed off waivers by the Mariners in November, then designated for assignment on Saturday.

Pedroia suffered a "significant setback" during his knee rehab, so his placement on the 60-day IL doesn't come as a surprise. The 36-year-old did not report to spring training with the Red Sox.

Along with Valdez, Boston has added Chris Mazza, Martin Perez, Trevor Hildenberger, to its pitching staff this offseason.

An Opening Day start for Red Sox' Chris Sale: 'I think I'm going to be ready'

An Opening Day start for Red Sox' Chris Sale: 'I think I'm going to be ready'

Already coming off a season cut short by an elbow injury that shut him down last August, Chris Sale's spring training got off to a slow start as he recovered from a bout with pneumonia just as pitchers and catchers reported to Red Sox camp in Fort Myers. 

He says he's progressing after the illness led to him dropping a few pounds from his already thin frame (6-foot-6, 180). He'll throw a side session Sunday and told reporters on Saturday that he thinks he'll be ready for Opening Day March 26.

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"I think I’m going to be ready for [the opener]. But like I said, those aren’t my calls to make. I go out there, do my job, tell them how I feel on a daily basis," Sale said. "Obviously as the workload picks up, we have to see how things work out. I’ve just got to be open and honest with them and then we map out a plan and see how it works out."

In a Friday interview on WEEI's "Ordway, Merloni and Fauria" show, Sale said having his season end early last summer and going through a rehab process to avoid Tommy John surgery has him raring to go into 2020 despite questions about his stamina.

"I feel like I'm better now than I was then because of going through that [injury and rehab]."

Sale hasn't reached 200 innings pitched since 2017. He went 6-11 in 25 starts (147.1 IP) in what he called "a nightmare season" in 2019 after his and all the starters' workloads were limited in spring training and he struggled with his velocity at times before the injury was diagnosed.

"I feel really good," he told WEEI. "I can sit here and tell you what I want to do, what I think I'm going to do, but I've just got to go do it. I live here in town and put in a lot of work. I was here four to five times a week. It's exciting. For me, this really started last September October when that rehab process began.

"I gotta get back to the basics. Not really worry about fading, the injuries. This is sports. Injuries can happen overnight...I'm not worried about what my track record is or what people are thinking of me."