BOSTON (CBS) — Yoan Moncada is moving on up. The Boston Red Sox promoted the top prospect to the Double-A Portland Sea Dogs on Sunday, putting the 21-year-old on the fast track to reaching the major leagues within the next calendar year.
Moncada batted .304 with three homers, 33 RBI, and 36 stolen bases in 61 games in 2016 with the Single-A Salem Red Sox, homering in his final game with Salem to win the game 2-1 before his promotion. Moncada helped lead Salem to their best first-half record (43-26) since 2009, topping the Carolina League Southern division standings.
MLB.com rates Moncada as the No. 5 prospect in all of baseball. He projects as the Red Sox second baseman of the future, having improved his fielding at the position in 2016.
Moncada’s trajectory toward the major leagues appears to be going in the opposite direction to that of Rusney Castillo, who the Red Sox placed on waivers over the weekend.
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In the Red Sox’s quest to find a front-line starting pitcher to add to the rotation, Moncada’s name is the one that will come up most often in trade scenarios. But considering the Cuban prospect’s massive upside, it’s more likely he is as close to untouchable as any player in the Red Sox organization.