Sox honor Minor Leaguers at Fenway

Sox honor Minor Leaguers at Fenway

BOSTON -- Some of the Red Sox's best youngsters got a chance to see Fenway Park on Saturday in the midst of a September playoff race.

The organization honored its 2011 Minor League award winners with a pregame ceremony on the field, complete with general manager Theo Epstein and manager Terry Francona.

Right-hander Alex Wilson, 24, was named the Pitcher of the Year after going 10-4 with a 3.11 ERA and 123 strikeouts in 25 starts between Triple-A Pawtucket and Double-A Portland. Boston drafted him in the second round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft.

The Player of the Year honors were shared between Class A outfielder Bryce Brentz and catcher Ryan Lavarnway, the latter currently a big leaguer.

A 23-year-old who led all Sox Minor Leaguers in average (.306) and RBIs (94) and finished second in home runs (30), Brentz was Boston's second pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, at No. 36 overall, and split time between Class A Greenville and Salem.

Lavarnway hit .290 with 32 homers between Pawtucket and Portland.

One award, the Lou Gorman Award, was given for the first time on Saturday, and left-hander Tommy Hottovy was its first recipient. It honors the Sox Minor Leaguer who has demonstrated dedication and perseverance in overcoming obstacles while working his way to the Majors.

A 2004 Draft pick, Hottovy, whose son Cameron was born during the All-Star break, at last made his Major League debut this year.

"It's obviously an honor, to be in this organization as long as I've been, through the ups and downs and everything," said Hottovy, who plans to play winter ball in the Dominican Republic. "Obviously, I never got to meet Lou, but everything I've heard from him, the people he's been with and the lives he influenced, it's a pretty amazing award. It's obviously an honor, just kind of adds to that little bit what I've gone through in eight years. Just all that time, dedication, obviously a great organization and I'm proud to be a part of it."

Greenville catcher Christian Vazquez was named the Defensive Player of the Year after making just nine errors in 904 chances and throwing out 33 percent of would-be basestealers. He's 21 years old and was drafted in the ninth round in 2008.

Other winners included Greenville center fielder Felix Sanchez (Base Runner of the Year), left-hander Pedro Reyes (Latin Program Pitcher of the Year) and outfielder Ynoel Aguero (Latin Program Player of the Year).