I'm in on following the Braves and Red Sox minor league systems this year. The Braves because the season is already probably lost and the Red Sox because I'll be seeing the single-A Greenville Drive a handful of times this season. I also want to check on some of the guys the Braves traded most of their talent for.
And if I'm going to follow their seasons by tracking boxscores, might as well pick up some cardboard. Plus, this gives me another reason to pick up more Heritage and one of my favorite sets each year, Topps Heritage Minors. I love the team names, the logos, the mascots, everything about the minor leagues, really.
Manuel Margot is a Drive alum who's now in the Padres minor league system playing for the AAA El Paso Chihuahuas. He stole 39 bases last year splitting time between High-A Salem and AA Portland. The Red Sox traded Margot and another former Greenville Drive player Javier Guerra to get Craig Kimbrel. Margot and Guerra are listed as the top two prospects in the Padres organization per MLB.com. Really like the colors in the Margot card.
The other two on this line are Braves minor leaguers. The Braves picked up Toussaint from the Diamondbacks last summer. He is struggling so far with single A Rome but it's early.
Sean Newcomb is with AA Mississippi and has given up 4 runs in 15 innings so far and was rated the #67 prospect in baseball by MLB.com.
The Braves minor league system is loaded with young pitching talent. Hopefully a few of them have strong careers with the big league club, or they can create a balanced squad by making some moves. They seem to be set at shortstop with two top prospects there as well.
Chavis was a first round pick of the Red Sox in 2014 and is repeating at single A Greenville this year. He has good power but struggled to maintain a good average last season. He's off to a much better start this year.
Devers is one of the top prospects in baseball with High-A Salem. He is just 19 after driving in 70 runs last season for Greenville in the middle of a loaded Drive lineup.
Kopech definitely has talent but between a suspension and breaking his hand in a fight at the beginning of this year is having a hard time staying on the field. Kopech is also just 19 and was another Red Sox first round pick from 2014. He's got some growing up to do, it seems.
Sam Travis has hit for a high average at every level in the minors, and started 2016 with AAA Pawtucket. He's once again off to a great start at .327 through 13 games. It would not surprise me to see Travis have a long major league career as a starting first baseman for the Red Sox or elsewhere. This is the first card I've picked up of Travis.
Chavis I already talked about above. Glad to see him off to a good start. If it continues he'll be on his way to High-A Salem.
Was glad to pick up this Donruss insert of Devers. Yoan Moncada may be the more hyped Red Sox prospect, but I expect Devers to have a solid career himself.
Anybody else keeping up with their team's prospects this year? Anyone under the radar we should be on the lookout for?