Mitch Moreland is still playing baseball. The Red Sox are not.
The first baseman, who was dealt to the Padres at the trade deadline on Aug. 31, has helped San Diego advance to the National League Division Series against the Dodgers thanks to a Game 3 Wild Card win Friday night over St. Louis.
In his 20 games with the Padres Moreland only hit .203 with a .609 OPS and two homers. But he did manage three hits in six at-bats during the series against St. Louis.
So with Moreland still playing it would seem to be a worthwhile exercise to get first impressions on the two players the Red Sox received in exchange for the 35-year-old: Infielder Hudson Potts and outfielder Jeisson Rosario.
Here are Pawtucket Red Sox manager Billy McMillon’s evaluations of Potts and Rosario after spending the last month with the duo at the Red Sox’ alternate site in Pawtucket:
Potts: “Third baseman. Spent ’19 in Double A. I was really, really impressed with his approach at the plate. He would hit a ball to the pull-side 400 feet and then hit a line-drive to right-center field. Big, strong kid. He showed a little bit of defensive versatility, too. We played him some at second base, but the lion’s share of his work was at third base.
“You look at him physically, body-type, he kind of reminds you of a Will Middlebrooks. That’s the first person I thought about when I saw him. Good kid. Very hard worker. I like him. He’s going to be an interesting person when we try and slot him somewhere, last year with the full year of Double-A under his belt. We got something from San Diego with him.”
Rosario: “Rosario was kind of like the sneaky good player. Very good defensively. Very smooth out there. At the plate, it wasn’t like sexy but I would look around and he would have two hits on the day. He hits the ball all over the place. He seems like he’s a fairly aggressive runner. I think almost every time he tried to steal the base the ball was put in play. But I liked his aggressiveness. It will be interesting to see how he continues to develop.
“But both Potts and Rosario for Moreland, I think we will come out ahead on that.”