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July 11, 2016

Minor League Update

Games of July 8-10

by Christopher Crawford

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Prospect of the Weekend:

Brendan Rodgers, SS, Colorado Rockies (Low-A Asheville): 5-for-8, 3 R, 2 HR, 2 K.
That’s a pretty good doubleheader for Mr. Rodgers. He’s actually seen his numbers drop down over the past couple of weeks, but I think you/I/the Rockies will take a .867 OPS from a shortstop in his first professional season. There are safer shortstop prospects, but in terms of just upside, I’m not sure there’s a better one than Brendan Rodgers.

Others of Note

Friday:

Tom Murphy, C, Rockies (Triple-A Albuquerque): 3-for-3, 3 R HR, BB. Hey! A walk! That makes five! Murphy’s approach has regressed heavily, but his above-average power and good-enough defense still give him a chance to start.

Trevor Williams, RHP, Pittsburgh Pirates (Triple-A Indianapolis): 7 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K. Williams must be kind of lonely after seeing all of his rotation mates getting call-ups. With four usable pitches and improving command, he might get his chance soon.

Rafael Bautista, OF, Washington Nationals (Double-A Harrisburg): 4-for-4, BB, SB. There’s no power here, and the hit tool is only so-so, but Bautista is a true plus-plus runner who can really go get it in center field, and he’s not bereft of offensive upside.

German Marquez, LHP, Rockies (Double-A Hartford): 8 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 K. Yep, another Rockie, and no, it won’t be the last today. This farm system is really, really good.

Ryan Castellani, RHP, Rockies (High-A Modesto): 8 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 11 K. I told ya. Castellani is one of the more pleasant surprises in the system, showing better secondary stuff while still throwing the plus fastball he had before.

Christin Stewart, OF, Detroit Tigers (High-A Lakeland): 2-for-3, 3 R, HR, BB. I’m fresh off seeing him in person at the Futures Game, so I can tell you that the power is very real.

Hoy Jun Park, SS, New York Yankees (Low-A Charleston): 3-for-5, 2 K. Park didn’t have the same kind of hubbub as some of the other Yankees’ international signings in 2014, but he’s shown three plus tools in his run, glove, and arm, and the feel for hitting is coming along swimmingly.

Saturday:

Jesse Winker, OF, Cincinnati Reds (Triple-A Louisville): 3-for-3, 3 R, HR, BB. This was technically in Arizona as he’s rehabbing, but it doesn’t matter. It’s good to see Winker is recovering, and it’s not shocking to see that the feel for hitting isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

Michael Clevinger, RHP, Cleveland (Triple-A Columbus): 6 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 7 K. I’ll bet you one straw penny he’s not pitching for Columbus by the end of July.

Chance Adams, RHP, New York Yankees (Double-A Trenton): 6 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. When Adams has his good stuff going, there’s no Chance for Double-A hitters to make solid contact. Sorry. Really sorry.

Billy McKinney, OF, Chicago Cubs (Double-A Tennessee): 3-for-4, 2B. Since June 1st, McKinney is slashing .296/.397/.398. No homers in that time frame, but beggars can’t be choosers.

Richard Urena, SS, Blue Jays (High-A Dunedin): 5-for-5, 2B, CS. He’s tantalized for years, but Urena appears to have figured some things out, showing the same quality defense and backing it up with much more offensive firepower.

Cody Ponce, RHP, Milwaukee Brewers (High-A Brevard County): 6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 12 K. When Ponce is clicking and repeating the delivery, he’ll show two plus pitches in his fastball and cutter, and an average curve and change to keep you honest.

Joan Baez, RHP, Nationals (Low-A Hagerstown): 5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 10 K. Tired of hearing about talented Nationals arms? Sorry. Baez could be next in line with an electric fastball and a solid-average curve that keeps getting better. If the change ever comes, look out.

Kevin Padlo, 3B, Tampa Bay Rays (Low-A Bowling Green): 4-for-5, R, 2B, K, SB, CS. The .214 batting average is gross, but the .348 on-base percentage isn’t, and he’s a quality defender at the hot corner. A real sleeper, if you will.

Sunday:

J.P. Crawford, SS, Phillies (Triple-A Lehigh Valley): 3-for-8, 2B, HR, BB, K. I (sort of) understand why he wasn’t there, but I sure wish he had been in San Diego rather than Lehigh Valley last night. Again, I’m selfish.

Dillon Overton, LHP, Oakland Athletics (Triple-A Nashville): 7 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 6 K. That whole big-league thing didn’t go very well, but don’t panic just yet. He still has back-end-starter stuff/command.

Rookie Davis, RHP, Reds (Double-A Pensacola): 7 IP, 6 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K. He’s not missing bats at all (35 in 73 innings), which is disappointing, but if you see him on the right day Davis will show a plus fastball and an average curve and change.

Ozzie Albies, SS, Braves (Double-A Mississippi): 3-for-4, K. I understand why Crawford wasn’t in San Diego. I don’t understand at all why Albies wasn’t. Come on.

Rafael Devers, 3B, Boston Red Sox (High-A Salem): 4-for-5, R, 2B, 3B. I should have just titled this the “guy I wish I was watching in the Futures Game” update. Slowly but surely, those numbers are becoming more and more Devers-esque.

Akeem Bostick, RHP, Houston Astros (High-A Lancaster): 7 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 4 BB, 6 K. Throwing strikes has been a problem for Bostick, but he’s an extremely athletic right-hander who will show three usable pitches when he repeats the delivery. There could be some projection left in that frame, too.

Sandy Baez, RHP, Detroit Tigers (Low-A West Michigan): 8 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K. Baez is still more projection than finished product, but the fastball will touch the mid 90s, and he’ll show an average slider and fringe-average change as well.

Yeyson Yrizarri, SS, Texas Rangers (Low-A Hickory): 3-for-5, R, HR, SB. So much speed, so much arm strength, so many vowels in his name. Yrizarri is starting to show some pop as well, which makes an intriguing prospect even more interesting.

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

Related Content:  Prospects,  Minor Leagues

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