Minor League rotations, part II
It’s time to revisit the minor league rotation thing. Part I, you can see before, highlighted the probable rotation in Ft. Myers, the Twins’ affiliate in the Florida State League.
Today, we’ll jump up a couple levels (don’t worry, FSL fans, we’ll be coming back later on in this series) to the International League. It’s not often that you’ll find a staff full of prospects in Triple-A, but that’s what you’ll find in Pawtucket this year. It’s not as deep as Ft. Myers, but thanks to the Red Sox’ pitching depth, all Sox fans should head to Rhode Island when the big leaguers aren’t around to see the PawSox kids throw. Try this 1-2 combination of lefties on for size: Jon Lester, the lefty who was arguably the best pitcher in the Eastern League, and Abe Alvarez, who had a slightly disappointing 2005 season, but still has a big league future ahead of him. Add in David Pauley, who had a nice season in Portland last year and perhaps knuckleballer Charlie Zink (the knucklers are always fun), and you’ve got a pretty nifty rotation.
As good as that rotation might be, it’s the bullpen that might be worth the price of admission. There’s a good chance you’ll be able to see any of these outstanding arms coming out of the PawSox pen: 2005 first-rounder Craig Hansen, Cla Meredith and Manny Delcarmen. There are big-league relief corps that don’t have that kind of firepower.