Red Sox Demote Former Top Prospect, Keep Energetic 7-Year Vet Instead

Some machinations happening for the Boston Red Sox on this day, as they've announced that, despite a pretty decent spring, they're sending former highly-regarded prospect Jarren Duran down to Triple-A.  

Duran batted .333 this spring with a 1.207 OPS in 19 at-bats, but he has yet to display an aptitude at the big league level through two seasons of trials, so the Red Sox are sending him down for a bit more seasoning. 

The move paves the way for outfielder Raimel Tapia, who was right on the bubble of making the team, to head north with the Beantowners. Tapia's agents had actually been looking around for other opportunities on Sunday when it was unknown if the team would be adding him to the roster. He had an opt-out from his minor league contract yesterday, but had yet to use it. Now he's confirmed to have made the team. 

As a non-roster invitee, Tapia has been absolutely killing it during the Grapefruit League with the BoSox, batting .317 with a .963 OPS, five doubles and two homers in 45 plate appearances. 

The Red Sox, and the fans at Fenway, are familiar with Tapia — as is the man he beat out for a roster spot, Duran — from one of the most memorable moments of last season (in a bad way for Boston). Then with the Toronto Blue Jays, Tapia hit an inside-the-park grand slam on a ball that Duran misplayed, as the Jays won a laugher, 28-5. 

“We got lucky (signing him), to be honest with you,” manager Alex Cora said. “For a guy like that, that type of talent, to be out there and get him here as a non-roster invitee, I still wonder how that happened."

Photo: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports