Yoan Moncada, who was one of the most highly touted international free-agents ever, is set to make his minor league debut for the Single-A Greenville Drive after spending a little over a month in extended Spring Training. Moncada signed a deal with the Boston Red Sox worth $31.5 million back in February, with Boston paying 100% tax on the contract for exceeding their international spending pool limits.
Moncada, a top-10 MLB prospect, is a switch-hitter who can play a variety of positions, including second base, shortstop, third base and the outfield. He reportedly spent time working with Greenville’s staff during Spring Training, which should make the transition to playing in actual games a little easier on the 19-year old.
“He’s just getting comfortable with the routine of everything,” Greenville manager Darren Fenster told MiLB.com in Spring Training. “I think what everyone has to do and has to keep in mind, this is just a 19-year-old kid who has some incredible tools, but still needs a lot of work just to kind of improve every day, just like every single other guy out here.
Moncada played two seasons in the Cuban Serie Nacional, where he hit .277/.388/.380 with 11 doubles, four triples and four home runs to go with 28 RBIs over 101 games. So far, his plate approach seems very much the same here in America.
“You can already see that he’s a professional who uses the whole field when he’s hitting,” Ben Crockett, who is the Red Sox director of player development told MiLB.com. “We’ve seen him drive the ball really well, but when he’s in the cage, it isn’t just a home run derby. He hits the ball where it’s pitched and, for a young guy, he has a pretty good idea of what to do when he steps into the box already.”
Moncada will make his full-season debut for the Greenville Drive against the Lexington Legends at Fluor Field on Monday night at 7:05 PM, and the game will be broadcasted live via MiLB.tv.