The Red Sox traditionally produce prospects as frequently as the Vatican selects a new Pope. Remember that dry spell from Nomar Garciaparra to Trot Nixon to Kevin Youkilis? Two impact players and one solid regular in a decade?

The exception was that magnificent stretch from 2005-08 when Jonathan Papelbon, Dustin Pedroia, Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz and Jacoby Ellsbury arrived en masse to bring the Sox a World Series title.

Since then, however, the cupboard has contained ramen and saltines. The Sox barely produced a prospect of note between 2008 and last season when Will Middlebrooks burst onto the scene and reminded us what we’d been missing. Daniel Bard qualified until last season’s struggles, and the Sox clearly didn’t know what they had with Josh Reddick.