Now that Brayan Bello made the jump into a reliable starter in the big leagues this season, the Boston Red Sox are in search of their next prized pitching prospect.

And Wikelman Gonzalez is starting to make the case that he’s exactly that.

Gonzalez did nothing but impress in his first start with Double-A Portland on Sunday after recently being called up from High-A Greenville alongside power-hitting infielder Blaze Jordan.

The Venezuela native handled the Reading Fightin Phils by tossing six scoreless innings in which he allowed just four hits and one walk while striking out nine. Fanning that many batters isn’t an anomaly for Gonzalez, who recorded an eye-popping 105 strikeouts in 63 innings with Greenville. Gonzalez now has registered at least eight strikeouts in nine of his 16 starts this season.

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The strikeout pitch helped Gonzalez work around a single, walk and hit batsman in the first inning. He ended up striking out the side in the frame, including blowing a fastball at the top of the zone by Carlos De La Cruz, who is ranked by MLB Pipeline as the No. 9 prospect in the Philadelphia Phillies’ farm system.

Gonzalez’s fastball can reach the upper 90s and certainly has aided him in his climb up the ladder in the minor leagues. The 6-foot, 167-pound right-hander is 6-3 on the season with a 4.70 ERA and 1.39 WHIP while opponents are hitting .209 off of him.

He’s ranked as the No. 11 prospect for the Red Sox by MLB Pipeline with only two other pitchers in Bryan Mata (No. 7) and 26-year-old Brandon Walter (No. 8) ahead of him on the list.

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Featured image via Nathan Ray Seebeck/USA TODAY Sports Images