In need of a spark to ignite their dormant offense, the Boston Red Sox have promoted top hitting prospect Mookie Betts. John Tomase of the Boston Herald tweeted earlier this morning that Betts has been summoned from Pawtucket and will join the major league team in New York tonight. There has not been a corresponding roster move announced yet and we won't find out until later today if Betts will even be in the lineup to make his debut against the Yankees.
The 21-year old Betts is a natural second baseman who has been getting time in the outfield recently in an effort to clear a path for him to get to the majors, rather than get stuck behind Dustin Pedroia. His bat has been scorching through stints in Double-A Portland and Triple-A Pawtucket, hitting a combined .345/.437/.520 in 359 trips to the plate split between the two minor league stops.
Betts is ranked as the 51st best prospect by MLB.com and 61st by ESPN's Keith Law. His impressive production this season was a bit unexpected at this stage of his career, leading to his meteoric rise through the system. If those scouts could re-rank those prospects now he would surely rate higher.
As Boston's chances of getting back into the playoff race are slipping away, the team needed to make a move to turn things around quickly. Promoting a young prospect that was in Double-A just over a month ago signals some desperation by the Red Sox – but that's the point we find ourselves at. Toss the kid into the fire during a visit to Yankee Stadium to join one of the fiercest rivalries in sports and see if he can give them a boost. There is some risk involved in pushing a young prospect too far too soon, but Betts has proven himself capable of handling every challenge he's been presented with so far.
If nothing else, he gives Red Sox fans something to get excited about. Besides, can he really be any worse than what the team has used in the outfield so far this season? Get ready Red Sox Nation. It's Mookie Time!
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