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May 14, 2009

Future Shock Blog

May 14, 2009

by Kevin Goldstein

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Wasting time: part one

Clay Buchholz, RHP, Red Sox (Triple-A Pawtucket)
Wednesday's stats: 8 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 11 K
Look, I know the team is 21-13, but four Red Sox starters have ERAs over six. Whatever was wrong with Buchholz last year, be it confidence, mechanics, or any other theory thrown out there, it's seemingly fixed now, as in his last four starts, he's given up 10 hits over 26.1 innings while striking out 32 and walking four. I don't care what kind of silly translation you want to use, that's definitely an ERA lower than six in the big leagues.

Wasting time: part two

Brandon Wood, SS, Angels (Triple-A Salt Lake)
Wednesday's stats: 3-for-4, 2B, 2 HR (8), 3 R, 3 RBI, BB
Yes, Wood just showed up here recently, but this is getting ridiculous, as he's now batting .351/.439/.877 with eight home runs in 57 at-bats. Take into account intangibles, defense and anything else you want and you still can't explain why Chone Figgins and/or Erick Aybar are playing every day over this guy.

He's the fire starter, twisted firestarter

Brad Emauus, 2B, Blue Jays (Double-A New Hampshire)
Wednesday's stats: 2-for-2, 2B, 3 BB
An 11th-round pick in 2007 out of Tulane, Emaus was seen as one of those gritty, gutsy, get the most out of limited tools types of players. All of that is true, but it turns out Emaus can hit as well. Scouts always loved his max-effort, fundamentally sound play, but now they're praising his bat as well. Batting .310/.384/.504 in 33 games, Emaus has more true believers than ever.

Yup, pitching was the right decision

Ethan Martin, RHP, Dodgers (Low-A Great Lakes)
Wednesday's stats: 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 8 K
Martin had first-round potential as a third baseman in the 2008 draft, but it was his arm than really generated the attention, and so far this year, Martin is showing why, with his third five-inning shutout stint in seven starts. With a fastball that touches the mid-90s and what is already a plus power breaking ball, Martin has struck out 40 in 30 innings while limiting the Midwest League to a .196 batting average and earning some praises as the best pitching prospect in the league.

Something out of nothing?

Clint Everts, LHP, Nationals (High-A Potomac)
Wednesday's stats:1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, SV
Way back in 2002, Scott Kazmir wasn't even the first players selected out of Cypress Falls High in Texas. Everts was, going fifth overall to what was then the Expos. Elbow problems, including a Tommy John surgery have all but decimated a once promising career, but he's still fighting, allowing only three hits in 9.2 innings while striking out 13 and not walking a batter. He doesn't throw anywhere near as hard as he once did, but he can still spin a breaking ball, and just mind end up with some LOOGY possibilities in the end. It's certainly hard not to root for him.

Sleeper alert!

Hector Noesi, RHP, Yankees (Low-A Charleston)
Wednesday's stats: 7 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 7 K
Coming into year, Noesi wasn't known for much more than a 50-game suspension two years ago for performance enhancing drugs. This year he's known for utterly dominating the Sally League, as last night's start, in which he retired the first 19 batters he faced was just another in a season-long run of big nights for the 22 year-old Dominican. He's just to give up a run in 27.1 innings this year, and in three games since moving to the rotation, he's allowed just four hits in 15.1 innings.

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

9 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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Rob Moore

Thanks for the Martin update. His numbers look very similar to Kershaw's numbers from Great Lakes a few years ago. Is there a chance he has the same time of profile at the end of teh year or are do the scouting reports keep him down a notch?

Also, I'm curious about what scouts are saying about Withrow in the Cal league. His numbers are solid at least.

May 14, 2009 08:57 AM
rating: 0
 
nsmith3

I'm pretty sure that Clint Everts is a righty.

May 14, 2009 09:41 AM
rating: 0
 
mswain784

He is, and that will make it hard for him to make it as a loogy.

May 14, 2009 10:21 AM
rating: 1
 
Matt Kory

You're totally right about Buchholz being one of the Red Sox five best starters right now. But exactly where does he fit in? He's not going to supplant Lester, Beckett, or Matsuzaka (when ever he comes back), and it's going to take a bit more time for the team to come to the conclusion that Penny has nothing left and flush his $5M down the commode. That leaves Wakefield, which is fine, except that he's been the team's best starter.

The combination of a roster crunch and good players playing badly (soon to be a sitcom?) means Buchholz and his negative ERA are stuck at AAA for the time being.

May 14, 2009 09:54 AM
rating: 2
 
chico123

Buchholz had trouble with runners on base. The PawSox should put him in those situations by coming out of the pen. If he is still lights out, then The Free Clay Campaign will be started.

Tom
www.elguaposghost.blogspot.com

May 14, 2009 10:06 AM
rating: -1
 
Steve D.

Kevin, which O's pitching prospect could get Wood in return? Would Patton or Arrieta do it? It looks like the O's will likely grab another P in the draft, unless Green really steps it up, so they could probably afford to give an arm.

May 14, 2009 11:21 AM
rating: 0
 
Steve D.

Haha, I said "get Wood."

May 14, 2009 11:27 AM
rating: 4
 
Lopecci

Love the Minor League Update column. It would be even more brilliant if you included the "year to date stats" under yesterdays stats. Thanks for the hard work Mr Goldstein.

May 14, 2009 11:26 AM
rating: 3
 
Deech

yes, that small addition would be terrific, I love the column. Michael Saunders needs some love though.

May 14, 2009 13:37 PM
rating: 1
 
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