The past 15 years or so, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to shoot photos and write articles/interviews for Boston Baseball, which Publisher and Editor, Michael Rutstein has made into a first class magazine.
I’ve looked forward to seeing Red Sox farm teams every season with the hope I could see them all and get lots of photos for that quality magazine.
I had my best luck with the Boston Double A teams, first at Trenton, and now at Portland, ME, a beautiful Atlantic Ocean seacoast town about a 100 miles northwest of Boston..
At Double A through the years, I have gotten to know Trot Nixon, Nomar Garciaparra, Carl Pavano, Jeff Suppan, Kevin Youvilis, and several other good ball players now gracing major league rosters.
While I have been at Hadlock Field several times, Portland was always a Florida AA – affiliate. One trip there I paid a lot of attention to a young Marlins’ RHP Josh Beckett, who is ironically now the Bosox pitching ace.
The past couple seasons, the Red Sox have loaded Double A – Portland with some top notch young pitchers and this season is no different.
Maybe following in the footsteps of Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz who pitched no-hitters recently up in the majors, BA #4 prospect RHP Justin Masterson, BA #7 RHP Michael Bowden, BA #22 LHP Dustin Richardson, BA #27 LHP Hunter Jones, RHP Beau Vaughn, RHP Matt Goodson, RHP Chad Rhoades, RHP Kyle Jackson, and RHP Mike James make up the Sea Wolves pitching staff when I saw them in early May at Bowie.. Masterson has since been called up to make a 3-hit start at Kansas City.
Portland has more than just pitching this season – they have a lineup which can score some runs, with a prospect laden lineup of one of Rodger’s Picks last season, 1B/3B Andrew Pinckney, BA #25 OF Bubba Bell, BA #20 C Mark Wagner, BA #21 Aaron Bates, 3b Ryan Khoury, OF Jeff Corsaletti, C John Otness, and several other hard hitting position players, who opposing pitchers must be continually aware of.