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Some time on Sunday, June 24th, it was officially reported that Kevin Youkilis had been traded.
In return, the Red Sox acquired pitcher Zach Stewart and utility player Brent Lillibridge. Here’s what you can expect from the newest members of the Boston Red Sox.
After the 2009 season, Baseball America rated Stewart as the number one prospect in the Blue Jays’ farm system. If we fast forward to 2012, Stewart’s production has yet to match his projection.
In 30 innings this season, most in relief, he has surrendered 10 home runs and has an ERA of 6.00. However, Stewart is only 25 years old, and will be converted back to a starter to help the ailing Red Sox starting rotation. Stewart has thrown in the low-to-mid 90’s out of the bullpen, but slows his fastball down to around 90 MPH as a starter. His sinking fastball might give Red Sox fans a glimpse into the days of Derek Lowe, but don’t expect Stewart to be as reliable, or durable, as Lowe was.
The 28-year-old Lillibridge will remind a lot of Red Sox fans of current utility man Nick Punto. The difference will be that Lillibridge can, and has, played outfield at a high defensive level. With Red Sox outfielders dropping faster than Kevin Youkilis’ batting average, the Sox will be able to use Lillibridge to bide some time while the team gets healthy.
He struggles at the plate, but last year he had his best offensive season, hitting 13 home runs in only 216 at bats.