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July 1, 2010

Future Shock Blog

Minor League Update: Games of June 30

by Kevin Goldstein

Brett Jackson, OF, Cubs (Double-A Tennessee): 3-for-4, 2 2B, 2 R, 3 RBI, BB, SB

In my discussions with scouts for today's Top 11 prospects piece, one scout brought up Jackson. We both immediately dismissed the idea, but then both admitted that he wasn't far off either. The only issue is that he doesn't have that one killer tool. He has power, but not a ton. He runs well, but he's not a burner. But everything about his game is clicking, including a 9-for-19 run with two doubles and two home runs in his first four Double-A games, and there's no weaknesses in his game.

Devin Mesoraco, C, Reds (Double-A Carolina): 2-for-4, HR (6), 2 R, 2 RBI, K.

Mesoraco's was the talk of the town early in the year, when the former first-round pick began slugging in the Carolina League and finally living up to expectations. A slow start in Double-A made the start looking fluky, but he's found his level in the Southern League now as well, as his batting average is up 64 points in the last week to a healthy .280/.313/.573. Catching prospects are rare, and Mesoraco is looking more and more like the real thing.

Casey Weathers, RHP, Rockies (Short-season Tri-City): 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K

Once the Rockies closer of the future, the former first-round pick is now a guy in the Northwest League trying to return from Tommy John surgery.  That said, it's definitely a "so far, so good" situation as in 6 2/3 innings, Weathers has allowed two hits, walked three and struck out a whopping 14 while touching 97 mph with his fastball.

Others of Note:

  • Brandon Belt, 1B, Giants (High-A San Jose): 3-for-5, 2B, 3B, 2 R, 3RBI, K, SB.  Mini-slump got him off of the flirt with .400, still hitting .380/.488/.624 and wasting his time at this level.
  • Michael Brantley, OF, Indians (Triple-A Columbus): 3-for-5, 2B, 2 R, RBI, SB. 18-for-42 (.429) during nine-game hitting streak and batting .316/.388/.409 in 57 games; no changes to prospect status despite early season struggles.
  • Domonic Brown, OF, Phillies (Triple-A Lehigh Valley): 3-for-4, 2B, HR (2), 2 R, 3 RBI. 11-for-24 since promotion; see today's feature piece for why he's the best prospect still in the minors.
  • Chase D'Arnaud, SS, Pirates (Double-A Altoona): 3-for-5, 2 R. Horrible in April/May, but back on track with a .316/.383/.500 June; solid tools across the board other than lack of power.
  • Kentrail Davis, OF, Brewers (Low-A Wisconsin): 3-for-4, HR (2), R, 2 RBI. ''09 supplemental first-rounder scuffled and High-A during banged up first half of the season; .349/.453/.535 since moving down.
  • Wilmer Flores, SS, Mets (Triple-A St. Lucie): 2-for-5, RBI, K. 14-for-24 in last five games; no extra-base hits, one walk in 32 at-bats. Small sample size, but a little weird.
  • Wilmer Font, RHP, Rangers (High-A Bakersfield): 6 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 8 K.  Big power righty has 46 K in 43 High-A innings and is only 20 years old; inconsistent, but when he's on, it's very impressive.
  • Paul Goldschmidt, 1B, Diamondbacks (High-A Visalia): 3-for-4, 2B, 2 HR (18), 3 R, 3 RBI, BB, K.  Bat-only guy, but hitting .299/.349/.565 with five home runs in last six games.
  • Jedd Gyorko, 3B, Padres (Short-season Eugene): 2-for-3, HR (4), R, 2 RBI, BB.  .353/.377/.647 in 12 pro games; probably could handle Low-A offensively.
  • Dan Hudson, RHP, White Sox (Triple-A Charlotte): 6 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 K. Dominant of late; 2.06 ERA in last eight starts with twice as many strikeouts (54) than hits allowed (27) in 48 innings.
  • Jason Kipnis, 2B, Indians (Double-A Akron): 3-for-5, 2 R, RBI, K. .338/.408/.559 in 17 games since promotion; stock continues to rise.
  • Nathan Moreau, LHP, Orioles (High-A Frederick): 9 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K. Two errors away from a perfect game; not a big prospect – command and control lefty without a ton of stuff, but up to 92 last night.
  • Juan Nicasio, RHP, Rockies (High-A Modesto): 8 IP, 3 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 8 K.  1.50 ERA in last eight starts; Plus command and control with decent velocity and plus changeup could fit into the back of a rotation down the road.
  • Max Russell, LHP, Angels (Short-season Orem): 4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K.  Fourth-round pick has started career with seven shutout innings; has size, plus command, solid stuff.

Kevin Goldstein is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Kevin's other articles. You can contact Kevin by clicking here

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