It is difficult to find good two-way catchers in today’s baseball world. While there are some guys who can manage the work load behind a plate and put up solid offensive numbers on the field, few can do both. Red Sox might be one of those few.
Blake Swihart, a top prospect, made his Triple A debut at 22 years old and demonstrated why he is a unique catcher. MLB.com has called him a young Buster Posey. This is why his name keeps popping up in trade discussions. Boston has not yet agreed to part ways with him.
Swihart is a switch hitter and uses all of the field. He also hits line drives consistently, which should translate to a high average. Swihart can hit for decent power due to his solid contact. He will be able to hit 20 home runs once he is more mature. Kevin Boles, PawSox manager, stated that Swihart has a better consistency from the right side and can extend the zone at times. He should work on his left-handed hitting and plate discipline in 2015.
Boles was raving about Swihart’s defense when he spoke about Swihart. Scouts believe he could be moved to another position to keep his offense. However, the organization does not plan to move him and he has the potential to become a Gold Glover. He is quick and can block the ball well, as well as position himself to throw out runners. He is a strong hitter, and led the Eastern League (Double A) in throwing out 47% base runners.
Swihart is an all-round talent in a position that can be difficult to find those skills. He will most likely spend 2015 in Pawtucket. He’s the best option for promotion if Ryan Hanigan or Christian Vazquez are hurt. His game isn’t in crisis. This season will be all about tweaking his game and making adjustments as needed. Swihart, Boston’s top prospect, is arguably the best catching prospect in baseball.