In the 35th round of the 2008 MLB draft, the Boston Red Sox selected Carson Blair, a shortstop out of Liberty Christian High School in Argyle, Texas. With the help of a $200k signing bonus, Boston was able to agree to terms with Blair signing him, making him bypass a commitment to Tulane on the day of the signing deadline.
Liking what they saw in him, the Red Sox converted Blair to a catcher that off season. Since then, Blair has yet to reach AA and is the only prospect remaining in the Red Sox organization who was drafted in 2008 to not yet do so. After bouncing around in low-A ball for six years, Blair who is in his seventh professional season is finally making a name for himself.
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For the first two months of this year, Blair really struggled at the plate. Hitting just .167 with four homeruns in 29 games. Blair has completely turned it around this month for a total of 12 games racking up 20 hits in 40 at-bats making for a .500 batting average. Of those hits, four are doubles and three are homeruns. He has also drawn ten walks to 13 strikeouts giving him a .600 OBP over that time span. Although this is a small sample size, it is definitely encouraging to see a Minor Leaguer play well and imagine the potential future he could have.
Behind the dish, the 24-year-old has a strong arm. So far this year he has gunned down 20 of 60 would-be base stealers, a major improvement over the dismal 22% which previously stood as his career high. A shortstop in high school, Blair finally seems to be adjusting well to life behind the plate.
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Noted on scouting reports as a hard worker, all this hard work seems to be paying off for Carson Blair. There is not really a chance Blair can keep up what he has been doing as of late for the rest of the year as no human possibly could, but he is showing promise and giving Boston some satisfaction watching a late-round pick potentially pay off. Even when Blair cools down a bit, he still has excellent plate discipline as well as some solid power numbers. As long as he can continue to get some hits, he could eventually make it to the big leagues, but it might take a while.
The catcher has a long way to go since he is only in high-A Salem right now. Given his talent and hard work, Blair has what it takes to make it big someday, even if it takes some time. Players progress at different rates and adjusting to catching proved to take a huge toll on Blair but now he seems to have it figured out and is progressing nicely. Although he is not listed as a top prospect so to speak on any lists, many players are not who end up doing just fine. Blair will be an interesting player to watch, so keep an eye out for him on the Salem Red Sox and potentially even the Portland Sea Dogs by the end of the year.