Over the last few years, Chaim Bloom has remade the Boston Red Sox farm system. As a result, the Red Sox now have the 12th best minor league system in baseball. One prospect who has been part of that success is Ronaldo Hernandez, who was acquired by Boston last season. While the 24-year-old came to Boston with high expectations, he did not disappoint. With the minor league season only a few weeks away, he is a player watch.
In 99 games last year, Hernandez hit .284 between two levels. The Red Sox 23rd best prospect also showcased his power as 46 of his 103 hits went for extra bases. Against more advanced pitching, Hernandez rose to the challenge. As a result, he ended the season in Triple-A, where he thrived.
While the Colombian native only appeared in seven Triple-A games, he was hard to keep off the bases. In 27 at-bats, Hernandez posted a .333 batting average. He was also able to limit strikeouts and made consistent contact. Although he rarely walked, Hernandez posted the second-highest on-base percentage of his career. As he looks to build on his 2021 campaign, he will need to improve his defense.
Through five minor league seasons, the talented catcher has 79 passed balls. In that span, he also has 32 errors, including six last year. He has, however, had success catching runners stealing. That will be key going forward as he is projected to make his MLB debut in 2022. He is currently the Red Sox’s top catching prospect, with Connor Wong close behind.
Ronaldo Hernandez big shot!pic.twitter.com/cgi4vM2gqA
— Boston Sports (@bahstonspahts) August 1, 2021
With Hernandez set to begin the season in Worcester, he will be one stop away from Boston. He is projected to hit 20 homers a year in the majors with a .260 batting average if he can improve his pitch selection. That is encouraging for the Red Sox as Hernandez used to be one of baseball’s best catching prospects.
Due to his success last year, Hernandez will be watched closely watched in 2022. Both Christian Vazquez and Kevin Plawecki will be free agents at the end of the season. The Red Sox could be in need of a replacement behind the plate. Hernandez could be a solution. However, his rise to the majors will depend on his ability to make adjustments as he gains more experience in Triple-A. Regardless of what the future holds, Hernandez made an excellent first impression and could be an important part of the Red Sox’s future.
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