Chavis among prospects going to AFL

Chavis among prospects going to AFL

TORONTO -- Fresh off a breakout season in the Minor Leagues, third baseman Michael Chavis is among the players the Red Sox will send to the Arizona Fall League in October.

Chavis, who is ranked the Red Sox's No. 3 prospect by MLBPipeline.com, has 29 homers and 88 RBIs in a season split between Class A Advanced Salem and Double-A Portland.

The third baseman will play for the Peoria Javelins along with two left-handed pitchers who have served multiple stints with the Red Sox in Brian Johnson and Henry Owens.

"Well, first of all, anytime you're going to the Arizona Fall League, you're going against the better young players who are in the game today," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "Chavis isn't a guy we had over in big league camp, but to see the year he's having, this is a monster year and a breakout year for him. Great to see a right-handed power hitter come along and develop as a young guy. What was identified coming out of high school at such a high pick is coming to fruition."

2017 Arizona Fall League rosters
Click on the AFL team name to see complete roster.
AFL club MLB clubs
Glendale CLE, CWS, LA, PHI, PIT
Peoria ATL, BOS, SD, SEA, TOR
Salt River ARI, BAL, COL, MIA, MIL
Surprise KC, MIN, STL, TB, TEX
Scottsdale CIN, LAA, NYM, NYY, SF
Mesa CHC, DET, HOU, OAK, WSH

The Arizona Fall League is a "finishing school" for prospects who are close the Majors. Generally speaking, if a team sends a player to the AFL, it's an indication that the club thinks he has the chance to contribute in the big leagues in the near future. In other words, it's generally a short leap from the AFL to MLB.

However, the circumstances are different for Owens and Johnson.

Owens, who was a regular rotation member for the Red Sox for the final few weeks in 2015, has stalled in his development the past two years.

"You know, in Henry's case, as he's adjusted the arm slot, the more innings you can accumulate, the more you can repeat an adjustment that is being sought after to entrench," said Farrell. "Particularly with pitching, there's no other way to work on it. You've got to get in games. So provided that the innings total is within a reasonable number, you keep getting the work done."

Johnson pitched a complete-game shutout for the Red Sox on May 27 against the Mariners. But he's been impacted by injuries again this season, preventing him from more opportunities with the Sox.

Johnson blanks the Mariners

"He's also missed some time, and when you start to look at the overall innings log over the course of a couple of years, these are things that you continue to improve at," Farrell said.

The other Red Sox prospects who will play in the AFL are right-hander Ty Buttery, left-hander Bobby Poyner and infielders Chad De La Guerra and Josh Tobias.

The league has a total of six teams, with five organizations represented on each. Every MLB team is required to send at least six players from its organization.

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.