The Red Sox selected Oregon Ducks closer Stephen Nogosek with the 178th overall pick in the sixth round of the MLB draft on Friday. I can not speak for all of Red Sox Nation here, but from what I have seen, Sox fans love their prospects. Having boasted a top five farm system for the past couple years is a great achievement to have, and drafting guys like Nogosek are a good reason why they are in that spot year after year. It is also safe to say that baseball/softball runs in the family, as his sister Jessica plays softball at Long Beach State.
I am not sure if it is just the flashy Oregon Ducks uniforms (which is one of my favorite college jerseys I have seen yet), but something about Nogosek caught my eye when the Red Sox drafted him. It may have something to do with being a dominant closer for the Ducks this year. He put up 16 saves with a 1.11 earned run average and 45 strikeouts on 40.1 innings pitched. Putting those kind of numbers up gave him 2016 Louisville Slugger All-American honors.
Nogosek gives the Red Sox something they have not had much of in recent years. Depth at the reliever spot. The Red Sox have had to go out and acquire or sign late innings relievers and some have worked and others have not. You have the ones who have worked out in Hembree, Koji, Ross Jr., and Kimbrell.(Lets also hope we can add Carson Smith to this list next season.) Then you have the ones that have not in Edward Mujica, Andrew Bailey, and Joel Hanrahan and the list goes on even further. There are only a select few that have came through the Red Sox farm and flourished in the pen recently. Matt Barnes is having a stellar year this season is a great example. Junichi Tazawa is also another great example but they are very few and far between.
The picture above is something that may not mean much to the average person, but it is something I love to see. Somebody who can joke around and have fun during the game shows me that they are having fun playing the game and its reassuring seeing that from young players who need to love the game. Nogosek tweeted early Monday that he was in route to Lowell to be there for their season opener on Friday. Look for most of the college guys the Red Sox drafted to be playing for the Spinners this summer along side Nogosek if and when they sign. Head on out to Lowell over the summer for a fun baseball atmosphere and a glimpse of the Red Sox future.
Follow Andrew Parker on Twitter @AndrewwParkerr