Gun debates have been hot and heavy for weeks now, but the topic is slowly starting to fade of off the front page. Leave it to the Boston Red Sox to bring the controversial issue back to the forefront.
Red Sox prospect Bryce Brentz accidentally shot himself while cleaning his handgun about two weeks ago. The bullet went completely through Brentz’s leg, but the injury is not being considered serious.
I’ll leave it to you to decide whether or not this account is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. And if it is, you can go ahead and start asking the million-dollar question of why he was cleaning a loaded gun. Me? I’m more interested in what this news means to the Red Sox.
Brentz is a superstar in the making. The 24-year-old outfielder has been lighting up minor league pitching lately. In his last two seasons, Brentz has hit 47 home runs and knocked in 170 runs in just 242 games. That pace amounts to 31 homers and 114 RBI over a 162 game period. That type of production is exactly what the Red Sox need from their corner outfielders right now, and it’s the reason why Brentz was invited to big league camp this spring. But now that plan has gotten, well, shot down.
Brentz will now likely miss all of spring training. If he does happen to heal up quicker than expected, he’ll be joining the minor league camp instead. This is unfortunate for the Red Sox, as new manager John Farrell has earlier suggested that Brentz had a real good chance to be called up this season to compete for playing time in a shaky outfield. Missing big league camp will surely be a setback that lessens those chances considerably.
(JM Catellier is the author of the book Fixing Baseball, a guide to restructuring the Hall of Fame. Follow him on Twitter: @FixingBaseball and Facebook, and check out his site: www.fixingbaseball.com)