Vazquez's arm is opening eyes

Vazquez's arm is opening eyes
March 8, 2013, 11:45 pm
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FORT MYERS, Fla. – Throwing out Trevor Plouffe in the sixth inning, Christian Vazquez showed off the arm that has opened some eyes this spring. The Red Sox clocked the throw at 1.82, while some scouts had it faster than that. Generally, a two-second throw is considered a good average.
“Just outstanding feet, quick release, plenty of arm strength, accuracy,” manager John Farrell said of the throw. “This is probably the fourth guy he’s cut down in spring training, all of the same variety. He’s confident when he throws a baseball and I think that just shows in the accuracy and the quickness in which he releases the ball.”
But, the Sox time wasn’t even Vazquez’s personal best.
“Like 1.79,” said Vazquez, who also went 1-for-2 with a double in the Red Sox 2-0 loss to the Twins Friday night.
For Farrell, Vazquez’s arm would be among the best in baseball.
“When you consider his quick release, tonight he was a 1.82 throwing the guy out at second base,” Farrell said. “He would be in the conversation with a number of guys with quick release and arm strength, for sure.”
Vazquez, who was selected in the ninth round of the 2008, he split 2012 between High-A Salem and Double-A Portland, where he threw out a combined 40 percent of would-be base stealers. He led the Carolina League throwing out 41.9 percent. A native of Puerto Rico, in 2010 he began working with Yadier and Jose Molina, whom he grew up watching in the Puerto Rico winter league when he was a kid.
Asked if he thought he had a better arm than the two Molinas, Vazquez replied “Yes, I do,” then laughed and turned red.
Vazquez, one of five catchers on the Sox 40-man roster, was one of the Sox representatives in the Arizona Fall League this offseason, and then played nine games for Manati of the Puerto Rico league.
“He’s a bright looking prospect behind the plate,” said Farrell. “He’s durable and this is a guy that’s really come a long way since he signed out of Puerto Rico and a guy that’s really worked his way from a stamina standpoint, overall strength. When his arrival date is here, he’s probably a couple injuries away in the short term. But in the long term he’s still got some development left with the bat. But he’s a very good-looking prospect behind the plate.”