After Eduardo Rodriguez dropped a stink bomb yesterday, he was optioned back to AAA Pawtucket and the Red Sox called RHP Pat Light for some bullpen help. Light will join the Red Sox for his 2nd stint in the big leagues this year and provide some more depth in the bullpen. He only made 1 appearance in late April for the Red Sox, allowing 2 earned runs in 1 inning of work.
So far this season, Light has looked very strong in Pawtucket. In 20 appearances and 26.1 innings pitched, light has a 2.05 ERA with 32 Ks (10.9 Ks/9 innings) and just 15 hits allowed and 6 earned runs. Light has also picked up 5 saves on the season, which will hopefully prepare him for late-game situations. At this point, an extra arm is just that, an extra arm.
Given the swap of a SP for a RP, I would guess the Red Sox will option Light (or another reliever) and bring up a starter when E-Rod’s spot in the rotation is up. A name to watch is Aaron Wilkerson. Wilkerson has a nifty 2.41 ERA in Pawtucket and is 4-1 in his 7 starts this year. It also just so happens that he pitched Monday, so will be on normal rest for E-Rod’s slot in the rotation this weekend. More on Wilkerson later in the week.
Over the past 5 years, the Red Sox have had some great success drafting and developing young talent. Tonight is the 2016 MLB Amateur Draft and rather than attempt to analyze who the Red Sox might pick, let’s take a look at who they have picked over the past 5 years and see where they are now. Since there are 40 rounds, the focus will be narrowed to top part of the draft and any notable lower picks. For those who are already bored, at least take a look at the 2011 draft, it’s something special!
RHP Matt Barnes (UConn)
C Blake Swihart
Compensation Round A
LHP Henry Owens
OF Jackie Bradley Jr.
Rounds 2, 3, and 5 (in order)
OF Williams Jerez
C Jordan Weems
RHP Noe Ramirez
SS Mookie Betts
3B Travis Shaw
Arguably the best draft of all time, by any team. Of the top 8 players selected, 6 have seen time with the Boston Red Sox this season (2 are back in AAA Pawtucket) and the other 2 are progressing with the AA Portland Sea Dogs. To prove the point even further, 5 of the top 12 picks are either everyday offensive players or frequent bullpen arms for the Red Sox in 2016, not including the 2 other pitchers in that group who have contributed at the big league level this year.
For those who are unfamiliar with how rare this draft truly was, take a look at the other drafts after this one for the Red Sox. There are usually 1-3 players who make the big leagues or who are waiting in the wings at AAA in a really good draft. This draft, thus far for the Red Sox, has produced 7 legitimate big league players, including a few picks that are on their way to becoming superstars.