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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates


    Among them:

    After missing most of the first half with a drug suspension, left-hander Mickey Pena opened the second half with two victories on Salem's road trip.

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates


    He showed he's capable of being a staff stalwart by posting a 2.95 ERA at Greenville last year.

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    Salem also has seen recent improvement from right-hander William Cuevas and knows what it'll get from Henry Owens, who cracked the Carolina League's top five in ERA this week.

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    Injured second baseman Sean Coyle hasn't played since May 29 but still leads the team with 10 home runs.

     
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     He could get some company soon.

     
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    Outfielder Brandon Jacobs opened the second half with a two-homer game against Wilmington on June 21.

     
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     That gave him nine longballs this year after hitting a combined 30 over the previous two seasons.

     
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    Shortstop Deven Marrero already has raised his average 30 points (to .272) after starting the second half by going 12 for 26.

     
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    He has stolen five bases to improve to 12 for 12 on steals.

     
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    After battling a hamstring injury in the first half, he's looking more like the player Baseball America rated as the No. 10 prospect in the Boston system.

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates


    Outfielder Keury De La Cruz entered the weekend as the Carolina League leader with 54 RBIs.

     
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    With plenty of table-setters still on the roster, he has a legitimate chance to end the year as the circuit's top run producer -- that is, if he isn't called up himself.

     
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    The Red Sox have high-ceiling prospect catchers in their minor league system. 

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    Baseball America ranked Blake Swihart, who is with Single-A Salem, the 72nd best prospect in all of baseball before this season.

     
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    Swihart, 21, was drafted 26th overall in 2011 out of Cleveland High in New Mexico.

     
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    He is a switch hitter batting .281 with a .361 on-base percentage, .438 slugging percentage, 2 homers, 12 doubles, 5 triples and 21 RBIs in 178 at-bats. 

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    “Blake has a good swing from both sides of the plate and continues to improve his ability to recognize pitches,” said Ben Crockett, Red Sox director of player development. 

     
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     “He is very athletic on both sides of the ball and shows much arm strength behind the plate."

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    "Defensively, he is still relatively new to catching so he continues to refine his game-calling, receiving and blocking, as well as ability to run the pitching staff.”

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    Christian Vazquez, who turns 23 on Aug. 21 and is with Double-A Portland, was Red Sox Minor League Defensive Player of the Year in 2011 when he threw out 33 percent of attempted base stealers. 

     
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    “His quick feet and release allow his arm strength to play as effectively as it does, as well as allowing him to be an above average blocker,” Crockett said. 

     
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    “Christian has shown quite a few positives in Portland, but continues to work on the consistency of his approach at the plate on a day-to-day basis,” Crockett said. 

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    Jon Denney, who the Red Sox drafted in the third round, 81st overall, out of Yukon (Okla.) High this year was ranked the 20th best prospect in the draft.

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    Thus, he might be a steal.

     
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    Re: Red Sox Minor League Observations And Updates

    His MLB.com scouting report stated: “Denney has the complete package for the position, with advanced receiving skills and a plus arm."

     

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