The Boston Red Sox traded away Yoan Moncada this offseason, but according to top executives, they still have the best prospect in baseball.
MLB.com on Tuesday released its second annual “Pipeline Poll,” in which general managers and scouting executives across Major League Baseball are asked to rank the game’s best young players.
Who finished No. 1? Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi, whose 10 first-place votes doubled those of Moncada, the No. 2 prospect.
Atlanta Braves prospect Dansby Swanson and New York Yankees prospect Gleyber Torres also received first-place votes (three and two, respectively).
That Benintendi and Moncada, who went to the Chicago White Sox in the Chris Sale blockbuster, are the game’s two brightest prospects is a testament to the strength of Boston’s farm system. Moncada struggled in 2016 during his brief stint at the big league level, but Benintendi thrived, posting a .295 batting average with two home runs, 14 RBIs and an .835 OPS in his first 105 at-bats.
“He has the best combination of upside and risk,” an American League executive said of Benintendi, via MLB.com. “He should be at least an everyday type player at the Major League level with the chance to be a consistent All-Star.
“He’s playing left field in 2017, but he is a legitimate premium position player with one of the more advanced hitting approaches you’ll see,” a pro scouting director added.
History also is on Benintendi’s side: Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager topped the Pipeline Poll in January 2016 and went on to win Rookie of the Year honors in the National League.
No pressure, Andrew.
Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports Images