Could it be Jarren Duran will flash his talents at Fenway Park sooner, rather than later?
The Boston Red Sox prospect fielder is the subject of MLB.com’s Ian Browne’s bold prediction about the team for the 2021 season. Duran impressed throughout spring training but he’ll begin the season at Boston’s alternate spring training site in Worcester, Mass., and is expected to play for the Triple-A Worcester Red Sox initially. However, Browne predicts Duran will claim both the center-fielder role and leadoff spot in Boston’s batting order by June.
“Almost unfathomably, the thrilling and homegrown outfield trio (Andrew Benintendi, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Mookie Betts) that helped the Red Sox to a World Series in 2018 is entirely gone,” Browne wrote. “Though the Sox have one solid piece in Alex Verdugo, they have an unknown in Franchy Cordero and a player in Hunter Renfroe who might be best served in a platoon role.
“This could pave the way for Jarren Duran, the club’s No. 4 prospect, to make his entry to the Major Leagues fairly early in the season. Duran has speed to burn and emerging power, and he projects as a leadoff hitter. If he can complete his development at the alternate training site and Triple-A in a timely fashion, Duran could provide a major spark for the Red Sox. While Kiké Hernández deserves credit for embracing the chance to be the leadoff hitter, he would need to make a significant jump in his career stats to be effective in that spot.”
Duran, 24, finished spring training with a .340 batting average and a 1.069 OPS with two steals and three home runs. When the Red Sox sent Duran to the minor leagues they told him they believe he has the physical tools become a great player.
Perhaps with just a bit more seasoning, Duran will begin to show that in the major leagues before summer and make a prophet out of Browne.
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