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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

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