3 prospects that could help Red Sox win AL East

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Sep 20, 2020; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Tanner Houck (89) throws a pitch against the New York Yankees in the first inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Red Sox sit near the top of the AL East standings. Here are three prospects who can help the Red Sox win the division this season.

The Boston Red Sox are having a solid start to the 2021 season with Alex Cora’s return to the team. As of this writing, they are currently sit in second-place in the AL East standings (29-19), trailing the Tampa Bay Rays by half a game. The Red Sox have some stiff competition, as the Rays (30-19) just extended their winning streak to 11 games after defeating the Toronto Blue Jays 14-8 on Monday. That, and the New York Yankees (28-19) are a half game behind the Red Sox following their series sweep of the Chicago White Sox.

The Red Sox are going to need to call up some prospects down the line if they want to contend for the division title. There are three prospects that come to mind who can help the Red Sox, but they will have to wait for two until after the upcoming Olympics.

RHP Tanner Houck

In terms of pitching prospects, Tanner Houck has proven that he is worthy of a spot in the starting rotation. Houck started in three games last season for Boston, and was impressive. If you needed further proof, we refer you to his 0.53 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, 3-0 record and 21 strikeouts in 17 innings of work (three starts).

Houck did appear in three games this season (two starts), but recorded a 4.35 ERA, a 1.45 WHIP and 12 strikeouts over 10 innings. Earlier this month, Houck was shut down due to a sore right flexor muscle. But team pitching coach Dave Bush revealed that Houck has been cleared to resume his throwing program in Triple-A.

So a return to the major league roster could happen at some point this season for Houck. If he can put up similar production for the Red Sox like he did in the 2020 truncated season, he will be a massive help for Boston as they push for the postseason.

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