Lavarnway recognized for his power

Baseball America published its annual survey of minor league managers to determine which prospects had the best tools in each league.

Of particular interest was that catcher Ryan Lavarnway was picked as the best power prospect in the International League, ahead of Jesus Montero of the Yankees.

Lavarnway has hit 29 home runs this season, 15 in his first 187 at-bats after being promoted to Pawtucket. The much-hyped Montero has 12 homers in 365 at-bats. The difference is Lavarnway is 24 and Montero 21.

Lavarnway is not yet on the 40-man roster but may be a better choice for a September call-up than Luis Exposito, who is on the 40-man.

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Managers also selected Jose Iglesias as the best defensive shortstop in the league.

In the Double A Eastern League, Portland’s Will Middlebrooks was named the best batting prospect. Outfielder Alex Hassan, the pride of Milton, was credited for the best strike zone judgment.

In other prospect news, Ryan Kalish is playing center field tonight for Pawtucket. He was the DH in his first game back.