Britton, 22, spent the entire 2011 season with High-A Salem. He tied for the team lead with 26 starts while finishing second among Salem pitchers with 89 strikeouts and fourth on the club with 97.2 innings. The left-handed hurler posted a 1-13 record with a 6.91 ERA (75 ER) and 55 walks, holding left-handed hitters to just seven extra-base hits and a .226 clip (21-for-93). In 2010, Britton led Single-A Greenville starters with a 2.97 ERA (25 ER/75.2 IP) and a ratio of 9.28 strikeouts per 9.0 innings (78 K’s).
Selected by the Red Sox in the 23rd round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, Britton is 4-18 with a 4.82 ERA (117 ER/218.2 IP), 212 strikeouts and 101 walks in 62 career minor league games, including 61 starts. In his career, he has limited opponents to a .255 batting average (216-for-847).
Lin, who began the 2011 season in Double-A before being promoted to Pawtucket on May 21, hit .245 (114-for-466) with 16 doubles, three triples, two home runs, 36 RBI, 72 runs and 58 walks between the two levels. A right-handed hitter, he combined to rank fifth among Red Sox minor leaguers with 28 stolen bases in 35 attempts, including a team-leading 16 swipes with the PawSox. Boston’s Minor League Defensive Player of the Year in 2010, Lin committed just four errors in 319 total chances this year for a .987 fielding percentage while appearing in 110 games in center field and 10 games in right field.
The 23-year-old Lin owns a .257 batting average (510-for-1,983) with 81 doubles, 21 triples, 20 home runs, 186 RBI, 335 runs, 261 walks and 130 stolen bases in 514 career minor league games over five seasons in the Red Sox system. A native of Taiwan, he was signed by Boston as an international free agent on June 8, 2007.
Middlebrooks spent most of the 2011 season with Double-A Portland, where he hit .302 (112-for-371) with 25 doubles, one triple, 18 homers, 80 RBI and 21 walks in 96 games. The 23-year-old placed among Eastern League leaders in RBI (4th), slugging percentage (4th, .520) and batting average (8th), and was named to both the circuit’s mid- and post-season All-Star teams as well as the Topps Double-A All-Star squad. Including 16 games with Pawtucket in his Triple-A debut to conclude the season and four rehab games with Short-A Lowell, he combined to hit .285 (125-for-439) with 23 homers and tied for the lead among Red Sox farmhands with 94 RBI. Last summer, he also served as the U.S. team’s starting third baseman in the XM All-Star Futures Game. A right-handed hitter, Middlebrooks recently batted .250 (14-for-56) with four home runs and 11 RBI in 13 games for Scottsdale in the Arizona Fall League and was honored as an AFL Rising Star.
In four professional seasons in the Red Sox organization, Middlebrooks has compiled a .272 average (397-for-1,457) with 99 doubles, eight triples, 43 home runs, 242 RBI, 205 runs, 121 walks and 32 stolen bases. He was selected by Boston in the fifth round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft.
BOSTON RED SOX 40-MAN ROSTER (38)
PITCHERS (19): Alfredo Aceves, Matt Albers, Scott Atchison, Daniel Bard, Josh Beckett, Michael Bowden, Drake Britton, Clay Buchholz, Felix Doubront, Rich Hill, Bobby Jenks, John Lackey, Jon Lester, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Andrew Miller, Franklin Morales, Stolmy Pimentel, Junichi Tazawa, Kyle Weiland.
CATCHERS (3): Luis Exposito, Ryan Lavarnway, Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
INFIELDERS (10): Lars Anderson, Mike Aviles, Adrian Gonzalez, Jose Iglesias, Jed Lowrie, Will Middlebrooks, Dustin Pedroia, Marco Scutaro, Oscar Tejeda, Kevin Youkilis.
OUTFIELDERS (6): Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury, Ryan Kalish, Che-Hsuan Lin, Darnell McDonald, Josh Reddick.