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August 19, 2013

Minor League Update

Games of Sunday, August 18

by Zach Mortimer

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Pitching Prospect of the Day: Thomas Harlan, LHP, Pirates (Low-A West Virginia): 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K. A big-bodied left-handed pitcher from Fresno State, Harlan is not really a heralded prospect, but hey, on this night he had it all working.

Position Prospect of the Day: Colin Moran, 3B, Marlins (Low-A Greensboro): 2-4, 2B, HR, 2 R, RBI, K. Moran was drafted so highly because he was at the top of the list of polished college bats. He has a great feel for the strike zone and the power should be enough to play. I've heard whispers that some wonder about the level of power he will develop; he also may have some issues defensively. These are only small warning flags and Moran developed a pedigree at the University of North Carolina that makes him an instant prospect; .306/.325/.500 with 1 2B and 2 HR in last 36 at-bats.

Other notable prospect performances on August 18:

“The Good”

  • Jesse Biddle, LHP, Phillies (Double-A Reading): 6.0 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 7 K. After being absolutely lights out in April, Biddle has fallen back to reality a little bit. The fastball works in the low 90s, and he has the potential for two plus secondary pitches (curveball/changeup). I’ve spoken with a few scouts who thought the changeup has looked better recently. In the past, the curveball has been Biddle’s go-to offering.
  • Anthony DeSclafani, RHP, Marlins (Double-A Jacksonville): 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 9 K. DeSclafani attacks hitters with a fastball that works in the mid 90s and mixes in a potential plus slider. Scouts have always liked DeSclafani, even during his days at the University of Florida, but the stats have never matched the stuff. DeSclafani has a big-league profile, but it may be as a reliever.
  • Tyler Heineman, C, Astros (High-A Lancaster): 2-4, 3B, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI. Scouts believe Heineman has enough feel to hit, and developing power. The role is most likely as a future backup, but this is yet another Astros prospect improving his stock in 2013.
  • Kyle Hendricks, RHP, Cubs (Triple-A Iowa): 7.0 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 7 K. Hendricks is an intelligent pitcher with a four-pitch mix. Hendricks throws all varieties of fastballs—two, four, and cut—and understands how to use them effectively even though they usually works in the upper 80s/low 90s. He offers a slider, a curveball, and a changeup, and the change is the most effective of the offerings. The deep arsenal gives him a chance to be a usable back-end starter.
  • Joc Pederson, CF, Dodgers (Double-A Chattanooga): 3-5, HR, R, 2 RBI. As I’ve stated many times before, Pederson showed me a ton with his batting practice at the Futures Game. The questions have always been: “Will he be able to play center? And if he doesn’t, will he have enough power for left?” I think Pederson is an everyday player, and most likely settles in around the fringe first-division type. The makeup is very good, and Pederson will work to overachieve.
  • Blake Snell, LHP, Rays (Low-A Bowling Green): 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 5 BB, 8 K. The command still needs work, but Snell has real stuff. The fastball has easy plus potential, and both the slider and changeup have the potential to be plus. Snell could be a mid-rotation starter. I would love to say that his floor was that high, but he will have to mature a good amount before he is able to realize the ceiling.
  • Asher Wojciechowski, RHP, Astros (Triple-A Oklahoma City): 7.1 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 8 K. Wojciechowski is a hard worker with a bulldog mentality. He offers a solid-average fastball, an average cutter and curveball, and he is still working on the consistency of his changeup. Wojciechowski has most likely earned himself a shot at pitching in the big leagues after rosters expand in September.
  • Mike Wright, RHP, Orioles (Double-A Bowie): 7.0 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 9 K. Wright’s fastball works in the low 90s, but can touch higher with plenty of sink. Wright mixes his sinking fastball with a solid-average slider and average changeup. Wright has the potential to be a long-term starting pitcher at the back end of a rotation.

“The Bad”

  • Ehire Adrianza, SS, Giants (Triple-A Fresno): 0-4, 3 K. Adrianza earned some praise after he was signed, but it hasn’t exactly worked out as planned.
  • Socrates Brito, CF, Diamondbacks (Low-A South Bend): 1-5, 3 K. Socrates obviously was looking for Plato on this night.
  • Franklin Guitierrez, OF, Mariners (Triple-A Tacoma): 0-5, 3 K. Remember when?

“The Ugly”

  • Tim Anderson, SS, White Sox (Low-A Kannapolis): 0-4, 3 K. Athletic with solid tools, Anderson should rate near the top of the the White Sox list when it is published this offseason.

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

Related Content:  Prospects,  Minor Leagues,  Colin Moran,  Thomas Harlan

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