Red Sox right-handed pitching prospect Noah Song’s professional baseball career has been put on hold for at least a year. The Department of Defense has ordered Song, who graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 2019, to report to flight school in Pensacola, Fla., by June 26, according to Bill Wagner of the Capital Gazette. The training usually lasts 18 months, per Wagner, who adds that Song will be able to apply for early release by May 2021. However, Wagner hears that it’s atypical for such a request to be granted at the midpoint of training.
A fourth-round pick of the Red Sox last June, the hard-throwing, 23-year-old Song got off to an excellent start in his first action as a pro – albeit over a small sample of just 17 innings. Pitching at the Low-A level, Song logged a minuscule 1.06 ERA with 19 strikeouts against five walks. Song now ranks fifth among Red Sox prospects at FanGraphs, sixth at MLB.com and 10th at Baseball America. He may have been a first-rounder if not for his military committment, per FanGraphs, while MLB.com opines that he was the top senior in his draft class.
In regards to his future, Song wrote in a statement (via Wagner): “I am fortunate to have two ‘Plan As’ in life: I want to serve my country as a naval aviator and play baseball for the Red Sox. I will continue to do all I can to accomplish both, and I sincerely appreciate the support I have received from the Navy and the Red Sox in reaching those goals.”
Vice Admiral Sean Buck, Superintendent of the Naval Academy, wrote, “The Naval Academy is proud of what Ensign Song has accomplished and is hopeful he will achieve his goals as a naval officer and professional baseball player.”