The Red Sox have selected the contracts of prospects Ceddanne Rafaela, Brandon Walter, Chris Murphy, David Hamilton and Wilyer Abreu ahead of the Rule 5 draft deadline, according to Christopher Smith of Masslive.com. They’ve also designated Jake Reed and Caleb Hamilton for assignment per Alex Speier of the Boston Globe.
Of the prospects called up, Rafaela is the most notable. He ranks as Boston’s third best prospect per MLB.com’s ratings. An infielder early on, Boston played him regularly in center field this season, where he hit .278/.324/500 with 12 home runs at Double-A. The promotion came after he torched High-A pitching earlier in the season to the tune of a .330/.368/.594 line. Rafaela doesn’t walk much, but there’s plenty of power there and if his development continues he could be knocking on the door in Boston late next season.
Walter also features on MLB.com’s top ten Boston prospects after a strong 2022. In nine starts at Double-A, he had a 2.88 ERA, walking just three batters in 50 innings while striking out 68. He had two unsuccessful starts at Triple-A, but should start there in 2023 with a view to staking a claim for a major league debut. Murphy is the other pitcher added by the Red Sox. He struggled in 15 starts at Triple-A in 2022 (5.50 ERA), but was strong in Double-A to begin the season (2.58 ERA in 13 starts).
Abreu came across in the Christian Vazquez trade from Houston. The outfielder hit .247/.399/.435 across both team’s Double-A affiliates with 19 home runs. Hamilton also spent the entire year at Double-A, slashing .251/.338/.402 with 12 home runs in 119 games while splitting time between second base and shortstop. Neither player has made it to the Triple-A level yet.
Reed was plucked off waivers by the Red Sox in October, so never actually pitched for them. He appeared in ten games for the Mets, Dodgers and Orioles in 2022, throwing 11 innings of 7.36 ERA ball. Hamilton was taken off waivers just a couple of days prior, so also never suited up for the Red Sox. He appeared in 22 games for the Twins, picking up just one hit in 23 plate appearances. He went better at Triple-A, where had a .233/.367/.442 line with 11 home runs in 62 games.