What Marcelo Mayer's promotion means for the shortstop's future in Boston


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PHOENIX - Marcelo Mayer is inching a bit closer to the major leagues.

The top Red Sox prospect is being promoted to Double-A Portland after in impressive start to the 2023 season in Single-A Greenville. It is expected that Mayer will be joining the Sea Dogs in Somerset Tuesday. Alex Speier was first to report the move.

The 20-year-old Mayer had been cruising with Greenville, hitting .290 with an .890 OPS and seven home runs. In May his batting average stood at .321 with a .998 OPS.

According to MLB Pipeline, Mayer is the No. 5 overall prospect in baseball. He will be joining fellow Red Sox top prospects Ceddanne Rafaela (No. 3 on Red Sox' list), Nick Yorke (No. 5) and Matthew Lugo (No. 13).

So, what does this mean in terms of gauging Mayer's arrival in Boston?

The obvious answer is that it will depends on the success of Mayer - the No. 4 overall pick in the 2021 Draft - with the Sea Dogs. When comparing paths of first-round draft pick shortstops who entered pro ball straight out of high school, the target date of early 2024 seems now to be a very real possibility.

Bobby Witt Jr., the No. 2 overall pick in the 2019, began the 2022 season in the major leagues, a path that lines up with Mayer entering the bigs next season.

Other high schoolers from that first round who entered the majors in 2022 included outfielder Riley Greene (5th overall, June debut), shortstop CJ Abrams (6th overall, April debut), infielder Brett Baty (12th overall, August debut), outfielder Corbin Carroll (16th overall, August debut).

The only player of that group to start the 2022 season in Single-A was Carroll.

Conversely, the two first round shortstops drafted straight out of high school in 2018 - Jordan Groshans and Brice Turang - didn't make their major league debuts until this season.

The third overall pick in the 2015 Draft, high school shortstop Brendan Rogers, made it to the majors with Colorado in May 2019.

Only two players from the 2021 first round have made it to the major leagues, with the Angels just calling up reliever Sam Bachman who joins Reds shorstop Matt McLain. Both 23 year olds were drafted out of college.

Jordan Lawler, another high school shortstop drafted in the 2021 first round (6th overall), is currently playing for Arizona's Double-A team. Lawler - MLB Pipeline's No. 8 overall prospect - has struggled this season, hitting just .190 with a .666 OPS.

The only player currently ranked higher than Mayer who will currently be playing at Double-A at a younger age than the Sox prospect is Milwaukee's 19-year-old outfielder Jackson Chourio.

Talking with shortstops Anthony Volpe, Marcelo Mayer

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