By Pat O'Rourke @patorourke_29 on August 9, 2014
One of the most exciting in what has been an exciting batch of prospects for the Boston Red Sox, there has been great buzz around prospect Mookie Betts, who made his major league debut in July after mastering the Double A and Triple A levels. A mixed bag at the big league level, it's clear the 21 year old needs more development before he is an impact major leaguer. Here are five things fans should know about the outfielder.
Of the 14 games Betts has played with the big club, he's played them all as an outfielder -- eight in right and six in center. That said, he's a natural infielder, playing second base for much of his time in the minors, not making his outfield debut until May 18 of this year. While he's used his speed and athleticism to his advantage at times, he's looked like an outfielder with less than two months of experience at other times.
Betts just simply isn't ready to play in the major leagues yet. He needs more time to develop, at the plate and in the field. He has just over half a season of experience above Single A, with an aggregate 90 games and 420 plate appearances between Double A and Triple A. While he hit .345/.433/.535 with 11 home runs and 61 RBI at the two levels, it showed in the majors, as he hit went 10 for 41.
Betts isn't major league ready, and that's fine. He's still 21 years old. He's in his second full season of professional baseball. You can point to Mike Trout and Bryce Harper and say they didn't need much development, but every player is different. When you're major league ready, you're major league ready, and Betts isn't major league ready yet.
Betts has shown his promise and the type of player he can be in flashes. He's quick, explosive and energetic. The dynamic type of player every winning team needs. He has the talent to be a perennial All-Star.
Betts' full name -- Mookie Lynn Betts -- is initialed M.L.B., done intentionally by his mother. Is that not a sign of something?
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