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Red Sox prospect Will Middlebrooks named to Arizona Fall League Rising Stars Game

11.01.11 at 4:19 pm ET
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Red Sox third base prospect Will Middlebrooks, one of the top prospects in the team’s farm system, was named to the Arizona Fall League’s Rising Stars Game, where he will play for the East team. In 13 games in the AFL, Middlebrooks is hitting .250 with a .300 OBP, .518 slugging mark and .818 OPS along with four homers for the Scottsdale Scorpions, including a .389/.421/.778/1.199 line in 19 plate appearances against left-handed pitchers.

Middlebrooks cemented his place as one of the top Red Sox prospects during the regular season, where he enjoyed a huge season with Double-A Portland (.302/.345/.520/.865 with 18 homers and 80 RBI in 96 games) before a late-season promotion to Triple-A Pawtucket. In 16 games with the PawSox, Middlebrooks hit .161/.200/.268/.468 with two homers, three walks and 18 strikeouts.

The honor is one of many for Middlebrooks this year. The 23-year-old was named to the All-Star Futures Game, the Double-A Eastern League All-Star Game and was also named the top hitting prospect in the Eastern League by Baseball America based on a poll of managers and scouts. He is viewed as a potential above-average offensive and defensive third baseman whose all-around game in the upper levels has convinced many observers inside and outside the Sox organization that he is the organization’s top prospect.

Despite the AFL Rising Stars nod, it remains to be seen whether Middlebrooks will be able to play in the showcase of the prospect-laden league. On Monday, he jammed his thumb while chasing a foul ball and while early indications were that the injury was not serious, the Red Sox were still awaiting the official medical report to determine how long Middlebrooks will be sidelined.

The Rising Stars Game will be broadcast on Saturday at 8:10 pm EST on the MLB Network and online at mlb.com.

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