Red Sox top prospect Marcelo Mayer, who has been sidelined since Aug. 2 with left shoulder inflammation, has been sent to Fort Myers, Fla., to continue his rehab and won’t play again for Double A Portland this year.
“He’s progressing well,” Red Sox farm director Brian Abraham said. “Just, at this point, where we’re at in the season, we want to make sure he’s 100 percent healthy and can have a normal offseason. We felt like trying to rush him back just to get into a couple games is not worth it at this point.”
The Sox initially expected Mayer to return in August, but when he resumed baseball activities, he aggravated the injury, which affects the lefthanded-hitting shortstop chiefly when swinging the bat.
Mayer has temporarily halted baseball activities, but Abraham expects him to resume this week. He’s expected to take part in the team’s instructional program in Fort Myers that starts next week.
“We just didn’t want him to play when he’s less than 100 percent,” Abraham said. “Ultimately, we felt like having him be 100 percent during all activities was really important for him and for us.”
Mayer, 20, earned an early-season promotion to Portland by hitting .290/.366/.524 with 7 homers, and 19 extra-base hits in 35 games for High A Greenville. He became the youngest Red Sox draftee to reach Double A since 2009.
After struggling in his first three weeks in Double A, he started cresting, hitting .261/.333/.500 over the next two weeks, leading into the All-Star Futures Game. But Mayer struggled after the prospect showcase, hitting .175/.230/.263 over the next 14 games before he was shut down.
Between Greenville and Portland, Mayer posted a season line of .236/.306/.433 with 13 homers and 34 extra-base hits in 78 games. His excellence in Greenville solidified his place as one of the best prospects in baseball (he was the No. 4 overall pick in the 2021 draft), and despite the poor numbers in Portland (.189/.254/.355), the tools and maturity he demonstrated offered plenty of promise.
“It was a really positive [year], getting all the way up to Double A at his age,” Abraham said. “He was probably a little unlucky. He put the ball in play, hit the ball hard, and played a really good defensive shortstop.
“Overall, the chance to get to Double A where he had a chance to be an impactful player on a team that was having a lot of success, it was a really good opportunity for him to play with some upper-level talent, see upper-levels pitching, and really play as if he belongs.”