Odds of Reaching the Big Leagues: Michael Almanzar

When you look at the list of players that fill all the minor league rosters, you might wonder where they all came from, and what their chances are of making it to The Show.

Nick Hagadone

Nick Hagadone

I made up a presentation recently that looked at the top ten draft picks of the Red Sox and their high priced foreign signings for the past ten years.  Included was some of the players that were missed by Boston.

In 2007 for example, Boston drafted Nick Hagadone with the 55th pick from the University of Washington (later traded with Justin Masterson to Cleveland), and then took Ryan Dent at number 62 out of high school where he hit two home runs in two years.

Since then Dent has advanced to AA, never reaching double digits in home runs and having an OPS in the .600’s.  His chance of ever reaching Boston are about 2%.

Boston could have selected Giancarlo Stanton, who was picked by the Marlins with the 84th selection.

2007 wasn’t a total bust for Boston, as two high school kids drafted were Will Middlebrooks with pick 174 in the fifth round, and Anthony Rizzo one round later at number 204.

There were many players on the list who Boston paid a lot of money to sign just out of high school.  They never advanced very far, but made a lot of money.

For example, there is one kid that Boston signed in 2007 when he was 16, and gave him $1,500,000 to play baseball.

Michael Almanzar

Michael Almanzar

His name is Michael Almanzar, born December 2, 1990.  Boston took him from his home in the Dominican Republic and put him in Greenville, South Carolina when he was 17.

What did he do to deserve more than a million dollars when he was 16?

Where is this guy now?  I was told to look him up and I did.  He was playing third base for Salem, in now his fifth season in the Red Sox farm system.

He was hitting around .280 when I looked him up on July 16.  On that day he began a 10-game hitting streak culminating in me writing this:

Last night Almanzar put his name with Ted Williams and Pinky Higgins.  16 straight times he reached base, including 12 hits in a row.

He even has a feature story on him today on MiLB.com.

Look at his last ten games starting the night when we found him in Salem.

His OPS is 1.604.  21 hits, four home runs, four doubles, and 21 RBI.

In baseball when you are a prospect and do well, you should move up the system.

In ten games this kid has done more than anyone in a ten game stretch. Please move him up to AA today.

He never made it to AA in 2012, but Almanzar just turned 22, and he will be going into his sixth year in the Red Sox system.

He hit .300 last year, much better than 2011, when he was one point under the Mendoza line.

If Almanzar could hit like he did for those magical ten games in July, he might be the next rising star to come to Boston.

The odds are that Almanzar was signed too early, and this will probably be his last year with the Red Sox organization.

Do you think Michael Almanzar will ever swing a bat at Fenway Park as a member of the Boston Red Sox?

A. 80% chance he will make it
B. 50-50
C. Less than 20%
D. 0%.  2013 will be his last year playing professional baseball.  Seven years to reach AAA is a long time riding buses.

About Rick Swanson
Rick Swanson has been an online feature writer for numerous websites since 2005. He was also a speaker at Boston SABR meetings from 2007-2009. Rick has created three statistics for baseball.... Reaction over Range: A new way to measure defense. Divide reaction time of any play, by the range distance. Umpire Strikezone Score: Take the total number of correct pitches called, divided by the total number of pitches called. Power Pitching: Add WHIP plus ERA and subtract the number of strikeouts per inning. Rick's current title is Consultant, Red Sox and Fenway Park History. In 2007, he was nominated for President of Red Sox Nation by Red Sox team president, Larry Lucchino. You can email Rick here: rickswanson AT cox DOT net

2 Comments on Odds of Reaching the Big Leagues: Michael Almanzar

  1. I’m going with B. Looks like the Sox may force him along, but it doesn’t look like he will hit enough to stick around in the big leagues. How is his glove? He will probably need to figure out how to play a few different infield positions to give himself some more value.

  2. To be honest, I’d really like a C 1/2 option here because I think the chances are well under 20%, probably more like 2%, but I would never say 0% for a 22 year old who obviously showed some remote form of talent once in his life. So, I’ll go with C, but just want it on the record that I think the actual chances are VERY, VERY slim.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.