In a bit of surprising news coming out of Boston near midnight ET on Monday, the Boston Herald’s Evan Drellich has reported that Red Sox number two prospect Andrew Benintendi will be joining the major-league club in Seattle on Tuesday.
BREAKING: Andrew Benintendi is to meet the Red Sox in Seattle tomorrow, the Herald has learned. https://t.co/LBI2aTrkaR
— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) August 2, 2016
Benintendi, the number seven prospect in all of baseball according to MLB Pipeline, was the seventh overall pick in last year’s MLB Draft out of the University of Arkansas. The Cincinnati, Ohio native won the Golden Spikes award as the nation’s top amateur player last season after hitting .376/.488/.717 with 20 home runs in 226 at-bats as a draft-eligible sophomore. In his first professional season, Benintendi hit .313/.416/.556 with 11 home runs and a 24:35 K:BB ratio in 239 plate appearances between Short-Season Lowell and Low-A Greenville.
So far this season, Benintendi has split time between High-A Salem and Double-A Portland. In 34 games and 155 plate appearances with Salem, the 21-year-old lefty hit .341/.413/.563 with only one home run, but thirteen doubles and seven triples. Since his promotion to Portland, Benintendi has hit .295/.357/.515 with 18 doubles, five triples, and eight homers in 263 plate appearances.
Standing at five-foot-ten and weighing 170 pounds, Benintendi has out-hit his size thanks to an incredibly athletic swing that produces incredible bat speed and above-average power. Defensively, Benintendi has been solid in center field but could become an above-average left fielder when he slides into Boston’s outfield alongside Jackie Bradley Jr. and Mookie Betts.
The corresponding roster move will likely be announced after tonight’s game or tomorrow morning, but it will likely be utility man Michael Martinez or outfielder Bryce Brentz headed to the minors in order to make room for Benintendi on the 25-man roster.