Red Sox have depth of talent in farm system

July 29th, 2016

ANAHEIM -- With the most thrilling part of the season upcoming for the Red Sox, it is important to keep a close eye on the team's impressive farm system, which is led by Yoan Moncada and Andrew Benintendi.

Some of the team's top prospects could find their way to Boston at some point during the pennant race. Others could be used as chips to help president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski make another high-impact trade.

This week, MLB has re-ranked the Top 100 Prospects in the Majors, and Top 30 for each team, and the Red Sox are in an enviable spot.

Only the Pirates have more prospect points than the 343 garnered by Boston.

The points are based on the representation of the club in the Top 100 list. For example, the top prospect gets 100 points, followed by 99 for No. 2 and 98 for No. 3, etc.

Moncada, the five-tool switch-hitter who was the Most Valuable Player in the Futures Game earlier this month, is MLB's No. 2 prospect and No. 1 in Boston's Top 30.

It's hard to imagine a scenario in which Dombrowski would trade him. However, if a franchise player becomes available, you never know what might happen.

"I think you've got to be open-minded to listen to what's out there," Dombrowski said, not speaking about Moncada specifically. "I think that's very important."

In his first 29 games since being promoted to Double-A, Moncada had a .902 OPS. Perhaps he moves up to Triple-A in the near future, setting himself up as a possible September callup in Boston.

One tell-tale sign for whether he fits into this season's plans will be if the Red Sox play him at different positions. Moncada has been used exclusively at second base since the Red Sox signed him, but is a fixture at that position and signed through 2021.

Benintendi has come a long way in his first full professional season. The outfielder is No. 7 among the Top 100 after being ranked at 25th in the preseason rankings. The left-handed hitter is No. 2 among Red Sox prospects.

The fact Benintendi was recently moved from center field to left field at Double-A is a sign that he could find his way to Boston in the coming weeks.

Left field has been a bit of a revolving door in left for the Red Sox, and Benintendi could clearly fill a need there, or at least be part of the solution.

The ranking of baseball's top prospects is done by Draft and prospect experts Jonathan Mayo, Jim Callis and Mike Rosenbaum, who compile input from industry sources, including scouts and scouting directors. It is based on analysis of players' skill sets, upsides, proximity to the Majors and potential immediate impact to their teams. Only players with rookie status are eligible for the list. The rankings follow the Collective Bargaining Agreement guidelines for which players fall under the international pool money rules: Players who were at least 23 years old when they signed and played in leagues deemed to be professional (Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Cuba) are not eligible.

Third baseman Rafael Devers ---No. 3 for the Red Sox and 25th overall -- isn't as advanced as Moncada and Benintendi, but the Red Sox love the potential of his left-handed bat and the power it should one day produce.

Power lefty Jason Groome, the 12th overall pick who was signed just before the deadline, ranks fourth among Red Sox prospects and is No. 42 in MLB.

Righty Michael Kopech, who has been clocked at 105 mph in recent starts, rounds out the top five for the Red Sox. The fireballer is No. 83 in MLB, giving Boston five players in the Top 100.