What Did the Sox Give Up for Boof Bonser?
|12.13.09 at 11:19 am ET|
In Boof Bonser, the Red Sox acquired a pitcher with a chance to be a bullpen contributor or rotation depth option in 2010. Signs were positive during his rehab with the Twins that he would make a solid recovery from the surgery on his labrum and rotator cuff in February. While the 28-year-old’s major-league numbers aren’t great (18-25, 5.12 ERA), his 7.3 strikeouts per nine innings and 2.54 strikeouts per walks are impressive. That, coupled with the fact that his stuff has played up out of the bullpen, makes him a decent gamble for the coming season.
On Saturday, the Sox revealed that the player to be named who they sent to the Twins in exchange for Bonser was Chris Province. Though the 24-year-old Province is not one of the better-known pitching prospects in the Sox’ system, he was viewed by the Sox as one of the pitchers likely to be an eventual big-league reliever.
Province had a 2.60 ERA in 43 appearances spanning 79.2 innings in Double A Portland in 2009. The previous year, Province had one of the more deceptive lines in the Sox system: though he had a 4.82 ERA at two levels of A-ball (a 2.86 ERA in Low-A Greenville and a 6.26 ERA in High-A Lancaster), he had a tremendous 2.67 : 1 groundball-to-flyball ratio, and was victimized in Lancaster in large part by the lunar infield surface that makes every groundball an adventure.
In 2009, his grounder rate (3.29 : 1) was even better. The 6-foot-3 right-hander, a fourth-round pick out of Southeastern Louisiana University in the 2007 draft, profiles as a likely big-league middle-relief option. Bonser has a chance to be a more overpowering bullpen option if healthy, but Province seems like the type of pitcher whom the Twins typically seek in order to create a very effective, inexpensive bullpen with diverse looks.
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