---- — DEADLINE DAY FOR SOX
Here is a list, via SoxProspects.com, of the Red Sox minor leaguers eligible for the Rule-5 draft if they are not added to Boston’s 40-man roster by midnight today:
Mario Alcantara, Michael Almanzar, Chris Balcom-Miller, Carson Blair, Bryce Brentz, Chris Carpenter, Garin Cecchini, Keith Couch, William Cuevas, Keury De La Cruz, Luis Diaz, Leonel Escobar, Derrik Gibson, Dreily Guerrero, Jayson Hernandez, Chris Hernandez, Peter Hissey, Aaron King, Aaron Kurcz, Juan Carlos Linares, Heiker Meneses, Boss Moanaroa, Yunior Ortega, Oscar Perez, Mathew Price, Anthony Ranaudo, Nate Reed, David Renfroe, Pete Ruiz, Felix Sanchez, Kyle Stroup, Francisco Taveras, Raynel Velette, Jose Vinicio, Kolbrin Vitek, Stefan Welch, Shannon Wilkerson and Madison Younginer.
Garin Cecchini and Anthony Ranaudo definitely will be added while Bryce Brentz most likely will be.
Cecchini, a 22-year-old third baseman, batted 322 with a .443 on-base percentage, .471 slugging percentage, .915 OPS, 33 doubles and 47 extra-base hits in 129 games between Single-A Salem and Double-A Portland this past year.
Ranaudo, a 24-year-old right-handed pitcher, went 11-5 with a 2.96 ERA combined between 25 games (24 starts) for Double-A Portland and Triple A-Pawtucket.
Brentz was limited to 81 games because of surgery on his meniscus, batting .264 with a .312 OBP, .475 slugging percentage, .788 OPS, 17 homers, 56 RBIs, 16 doubles and one triple in 349 plate appearances with Triple-A Pawtucket. Brentz, a right fielder who will be 25 next season, needs to improve his plate discipline, but it would be difficult for the Red Sox to give up on a hitter with pretty intriguing right-handed power.
Third baseman Michael Almanzar, right-handed pitcher Keith Couch and left-handed hurler Chris Hernandez are all on the fence.
Andover swimming placed second at the Division 1 state meet Sunday, snapping a four-year run as state champions. But the Golden Warriors will return some elite swimmers next year and have a good chance to return to the top.
“Looking at this year’s junior class, they’re pretty powerful,” Andover coach Marilyn Fitzgerald said. “They see and they know what they want next year.”
One reason for Andover’s longterm success is because Fitzgerald has all her swimmers compete in every race.
“It’s been my philosophy forever — every single girl has to swim every event through the year,” Fitzgerald said. “So they don’t get to swim their favorite events and that’s all about how we grow the team. If I only let (Maeve Awiszus) do the backstroke or I only let her do the 500, it would take the opportunity away for all the kids we need to build the team.
“So for instance, 15 of our girls qualified in the 100 fly for sectionals,” Fitzgerald added. “Fifteen of 28. That’s why we’ve had the success we’ve had: Because every girl on this team during a meet, had to swim the 500 one time. For some teams that’s like torture. It’s a badge of honor for (Andover swimmers).”
UMASS BASKETBALL HISTORY
With the UMass Amherst basketball team earning eight votes in this week’s top-25 USA Today Coaches Poll, it brings back memories of the 1995-96 team led by coach John Calipari and center Marcus Camby.
Camby (20.5 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 3.9 bpg) was the big star, but fellow classmate Donta Bright (14.5 ppg, 5.8 rpg) was the big recruit out of high school. Bright was an McDonald’s All-American in 1992 while Camby wasn’t. Actually, Bright was UMass’ first ever McDonald’s All-American.
Follow Christopher Smith on Twitter @SmittyOnMLB