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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Top Red Sox prospect Xander Bogaerts set to make MLB debut

Xander-Bogaerts-Red-SoxThe Boston Red Sox traded Jose Iglesias to the Detroit Tigers at the trade deadline in a three-team deal that brought them Jake Peavy. The main reason Boston had the luxury of making such a move to bolster their rotation is 20-year-old prospect Xander Bogaerts.

Red Sox manager John Farrell has announced that Bogaerts will make his MLB debut against the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday night. He will start at shortstop. Stephen Drew will get the night off.

Bogaerts hit .297 with 15 homers and 67 RBIs between Double-A and Triple-A this season. He has been one of the few names that Red Sox insiders have described as “untouchable” over the past few years, and one of the main reasons the team has been hesitant to make major trades at the deadline or during the offseason.

Expectations surrounding the 20-year-old are high, as they should be. The Red Sox have done a decent job of holding onto the right prospects in the past and turning them into players like Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia. Many scouts have described Bogaerts as a similar player to Hanley Ramirez — who the Sox traded several years ago as part of a package for Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell — but with a better attitude.

It will be interesting to see if Bogaerts can provide a spark for Boston the way Manny Machado did with the Baltimore Orioles when they called him up last season. The Red Sox remain a game ahead of the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East but have not played well this month. Bogaerts could play an important role down the stretch.

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