Garin Cecchini good insurance for Middlebrooks

Saturday April 5: Pawtucket Red Sox 6 – Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 4

Credit: Kevin Pataky - MiLB.com

Credit: Kevin Pataky – MiLB.com

Pawtucket- On a breezy day in Pawtucket, the Paw Sox outdueled the Lehigh Valley Iron pigs by a score of six to four. The offense started early and often for Pawtucket as they recorded a hit in every inning except the first and third.

Rubby De La Rosa got the start for Pawtucket and went five innings giving up zero earned runs on 75 pitches. De La Rosa allowed just two hits while striking out five and walking no batters. De La Rosa showed off his three-pitch arsenal that includes his most often used fastball that sits at 95MPH. He showcased great command on his other pitches, the slider and changeup, as well. All around good day for De La Rosa.

Garin Cecchini, the team’s third baseman had a monster game at the plate going 3-3 with an RBI and a walk. He was a big part of the Paw Sox scoring six runs today. He is the seventh ranked Boston Red Sox prospect of 57 entering this season and led the Minor Leagues in OBP last season, who had a minimum of 325 at-bats. He’s newly transitioned to third base, but it didn’t seem to phase him:

“I mean there are tough plays, but I think it’s a credit to what the [coaching staff] has done,” said Cecchini. ” I came in not knowing anything about third base and now I feel really comfortable there and feel like I’m a lot more consistent. I don’t care what it looks like – we’re trying to work on that, but at the end of the day if you get it done, you get it done.”

There was a slight meltdown defensively and in the bullpen in the seventh as the inning led off with a walk and then a double that scored the runner. Drake Britton then came in to the game and walked his first batter. A routine single, or a difficult double play could have been made, but the shortstop Heiker Meneses made an error that allowed a run and kept the men safe at first and second.

Brayan Villareal salvaged the bullpen as he came in to close in the ninth and started his work with a ground out, then a K. He then followed it up by walking a batter before the next batter popped out to seal the Red Sox victory.

The continued development of De La Rosa and Cecchini could prove to be vital in the success of the Boston Red Sox future, either through trades or players coming up the system like Bogaerts and Middlebrooks did last season, and like Jackie Bradley did this season.

My takeaway:

Keep your eye on Cecchini. He’s a solid 6’3, 220 pounds and if he can perfect third base defensively, he could be optioned to the Boston Red Sox sooner than later. He is an OBP machine in Pawtucket and he showed us great ability to be patient and take the walk.

Middlebrooks has just been placed on the DL and the Red Sox called up Brock Holt, but I would argue I’d rather see Cecchini there than Holt.

Cecchini’s continued development makes Middlebrooks tradable in the future and though Middlebrooks is playing well thus far in 2014, that just makes his trade value higher. He’s on record saying he wants to play the rest of his career here and there must be a reason they are playing him at third so often in Pawtucket.

 

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Categories: Pawtucket Red Sox

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