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March 10, 2014

Minor League Update

Spring Training Games of March 7-9

by Jeff Moore

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Friday, March 7th

  • Sean Gilmartin, LHP, Twins 2 IP, 3 K. Acquired in the Ryan Doumit trade, Gilmartin fits the mold of the typical Twins starter who relies on location and contact rather than overpowering stuff. Any time he’s racking up strikeouts is a good change of pace.
  • Jameson Taillon, RHP, Pirates: 2/3 IP, 3 H, 3 R (1 ER), BB. Amazing how we didn’t hear anyone saying he was better than Gerrit Cole after this outing. Taillon is still quite good, though, no matter what happened on Friday.
  • Jonathan Schoop, 2B, Orioles: 1-1, R, HR. His pop from the second-base position is what makes him so attractive as a prospect, despite his flaws.
  • Kevin Kiermaier, OF, Rays: 2-2, 2 R, HR. Known primarily for his speed and defense, Kiermaier does have some pop in his bat, though it typically manifests itself in the form of doubles and triples rather than home runs.
  • Marcus Stroman, RHP, Blue Jays: 3 IP, 4 H, 3 R, BB, K. A favorite of many prospect hounds (myself very much included), Stroman is having a tough spring. As evidenced by the home run he allowed to Kiermaier, he is very hittable when he leaves his fastball up in the strike zone, where the lack of downward plane (a result of his short stature) causes the ball to flatten out. If he can stay down in the zone and set up his changeup, he can be lethal, but he cannot miss up high.
  • Oscar Taveras, OF, Cardinals: 1-3, R, 2B. Just the fact that Taveras is on the field and in a real game is a huge step in the right direction for one of the game’s top prospects.
  • Carlos Martinez, RHP, Cardinals: 3 IP, H, BB. That’s much more like the Martinez we’ve come to know and love; he is still competing for a rotation spot.
  • Billy Hamilton, OF, Reds: 0-2, R, BB, 2 SB. Evidence that even when Hamilton doesn’t hit, he can still affect a game. The Reds just have to hope it will be enough.
  • D.J. Peterson, 3B, Mariners: 2-3, R, HR, K. Peterson may not be able to stick at third base, but if his power remains intact, it should play at first base or left field.
  • Kris Bryant, 3B, Cubs: 1-3, R, HR. Expect Bryant to make it very difficult for the Cubs to keep him in the minors all summer.

Saturday, March 8th

  • Henry Owens, LHP, Red Sox: 2 1/3 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 2 BB, K. Owens put on a clinic on Saturday of what happens to a pitcher when he can’t command his fastball. Hint: It isn’t good. Owens can be very good, but when he struggles to repeat his mechanics, he doesn’t put the ball where he wants it and gets hit hard.
  • Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP, Orioles: 2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, BB, 4 K. Some have been calling for Rodriguez to be in the Orioles plans for their rotation, but he’s been bad this spring and still needs more time to learn to handle the upper minors.
  • Byron Buxton, OF, Twins: 1-5, R, HR, K. The least-polished of Buxton’s tools is his power, but scouts believe that there is plus-power potential in his bat, like he showed on Saturday.
  • Manny Banuelos, LHP, Yankees: 2/3 IP, 2 H, 3 R, BB, K. Proof that the road back from Tommy John surgery isn’t always paved with gold, even 18 months out.
  • A.J. Cole, RHP, Nationals: 2 2/3, 2 H, 3 K. Cole has always had the arm, but the Nationals are hoping he can find the consistency that he has lacked in the past.
  • Archie Bradley, RHP, Diamondbacks: 3 1/3 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 3 K. Because of his mechanics and upper-echelon stuff, most scouts aren’t too concerned with the additional walks Bradley has made a habit of offering up, but it would be nice if he’d begin to limit them.
  • Christian Vazquez, C, Red Sox: 1-2, R, HR. Vazquez is known for his defense, but his bat is no slouch either. His power dropped off after a breakout in 2011, but even without it, he could hit enough to play everyday.
  • Joc Pederson, OF, Dodgers: 2-3, R, 2B, HR. Pederson is going to be an everyday outfielder and could be ready by the end of this year. Unfortunately, with the Dodgers’ already crowded outfield, he likely won’t get a chance to prove it.

Sunday, March 9th

  • Matt Purke, LHP, Nationals: 2 IP, H. After a few rough outings to begin the spring, Purke was able to throw effectively on Sunday, though his ERA remains above 11.00.
  • Kyle Parker, OF, Rockies: 2-2, 2 R, 2 2B. Parker is known for his home-run power, but he racks up doubles by the bunches, as well, giving him the potemtial for some big-time extra-base-hit totals each season.
  • Jesus Aguilar, 1B, Indians: 0-1, K. After the best winter on the planet, Aguilar remains 0-for-the-spring while getting around an at-bat per game thus far.
  • Edwin Escobar, LHP, Giants: 3 IP, H, R, 4 BB. Escobar typically misses a lot of bats and doesn’t struggle missing the strike zone, but on Sunday he got away with just the opposite. He should begin the season in Triple-A and could be ready if/when the Giants need additional starting pitching help this year.

Jeff Moore is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
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1 comment has been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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Nojsztat

Any idea how Banuelos looked, outside of his stat line? Was his stuff anywhere near where it was pre-TJ? How was his location?

Mar 10, 2014 06:42 AM
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