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August 28, 2009

Future Shock Blog

August 28

by Kevin Goldstein

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Why make us wait?

Grant Desme, OF, Athletics (High-A Stockton)
Thursday's stats: 2-for-3, 2 HR (20), 3 R, 2 RBI, BB
Yesterday, the Minor League Update alerted you of the impending 30/30 season from Desme, and instead of making us check the daily box scores waiting for the big blast, Desme took care of it last night, blasting a pair of bombs, giving him 31 home runs to go with 40 stolen bases on the year. With 18 home runs in his last 52 games and a .325 batting average, he's only getting better as the season rolls on.

A glimmer of hope?

Lars Anderson, 1B, Red Sox (Double-A Portland)
Thursday's stats: 3-for-5, 2B, HR (9), R, RBI
Anderson entered the year seen almost universally as the Red Sox top prospect, but after a brutal year at Double-A, he's unlikely to keep the crown. Thursday night's home run was his first in a staggering 43 games, and the seven total bases only raised his season averages to .245/.339/.369. Nagging injuries have certainly played a role, but it's not enough to wash this all away.

And the hits just keep on coming

Pedro Alvarez, 3B, Pirates (Double-A Altoona)
Thursday's stats: 3-for-5, 2 HR (12), 3 R, 3 RBI
Any concerns about Alvarez' slow start this year have been all but completely eliminated as he's been one of the best hitters all of the minors during the second half of the season, holding a .372/.472/.622 line since the All-Star break. Next year's spring training will be interesting, as we'll see if Pedro does enough to land on the big league roster day one.

Speaking of two-home run games in the Eastern League

Lonnie Chisenhall, 3B, Indians (Double-A Akron)
Thursday's stats: 2-for-3, 2 HR (3), 2 R, 3 RBI, 2 BB, K
The Indians' first-round pick last year, Chisenhall generated as much buzz as anyone in the Carolina League, but a promotion to Double-A proved to be a bit much for the 20-year-old, as he looked overmatched while batting .161 in his first 15 games for the Aeros. Thursday's game raised his OPS by more than 160 points, and with eight of his 11 hits going for extra bases, he's still one of this year's breakout performers.

Hitting the ground running

Will Myers, C, Royals (Rookie-level Chukars)
Thursday's stats: 2-for-3, 3B, HR (1), 4 RBI, 2 BB, K
Few teams have been more aggressive in the draft over the last two years than the Royals, so it was no surprise to see the organization take Myers in the third round and finally sign him to a $2 million bonus. A pure athlete at 6-foot-3 and 190 pounds, Myers has a downright pretty swing and solid raw power, but as good as the offense is, there are still plenty of questions about his ability to stay behind the plate.

Sleeper alert!

Danny Espinosa, SS, Nationals (High-A Potomac)
Thursday's stats: 1-for-3, HR (16), R, 3 RBI, BB
A third-round pick last year out of Long Beach State, Espinosa has been one of the Carolina League's most consistent performers this year. A solid-but-unspectacular defender, he's quite simply done a little bit of everything on the offensive side of things, slugging 16 home runs, drawing 70 walks, and swiping 28 bases. That kind of production from a shortstop is quite rare, and scouts think it's pretty legit.


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

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

BP Comment Quick Links

Matt Kory

Kevin, thanks as always for the update. Question for you: when looking at information such as Anderson's day, do you look more deeply into it? For example, did he get a double by blooping the ball down the line, or did he crush one into the corner? The result is the same, but obviously for a prospect, one is much preferable over the other.

Aug 28, 2009 09:59 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Kevin Goldstein
BP staff

You hope to have a scout at the game, but obviously, even with as many as I talk to, that's usually not the case. But yes, I do check game stories and things like that.

Aug 28, 2009 10:25 AM
 
mwashuc06

Actually was taking to a scout from the Blue Jays at that Binghamton-Portland game last night. I only stayed around to watch Mejia pitch poorly though he threw one plus curve but showed poor command of everything after the 2nd inning. Missed out on Anderson's homer because I had to leave the game early due to conflicts.

Aug 28, 2009 13:29 PM
rating: 0
 
billm21

If Alvarez is indeed on the fast track to the big leagues, what's the scoop on why they aren't sending him to the Arizona Fall League?

Aug 28, 2009 10:04 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Kevin Goldstein
BP staff

Not sure. My assumption is simply that they have guys who they think will benefit more from the experience.

Aug 28, 2009 10:26 AM
 
jmoultz
(440)

Not to be snarky at all, but are we that impressed with a 23 year old (Desme) putting those numbers in Low A and the Cal league? With all the strikeouts I'd like to see what he can really do against competition more his own age.

Aug 28, 2009 10:27 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Kevin Goldstein
BP staff

Oh, I agree. It's a great accomplishment, and his stock is way up, but there are questions.

Aug 28, 2009 10:42 AM
 
SC

Can Espinoza stick at SS? What kind of defense does he bring? Those numbers are great from a SS, less so from a 2B, and unexciting from a 3b (particularly in an organization with Ryan Zimmerman).

Aug 28, 2009 10:30 AM
rating: 0
 
Jeff Lewandowski

RE: Lars Anderson, I actually witnessed him hit a ball out of the park about two weeks ago during a game at Bowie. It was a shot down the right field line that the umpires determined to be foul. It was the worst call I've ever seen in a pro game, as the ball was fair, maybe by 10 or more feet; most of the (Bowie-rooting) crowd agreed that it was a home run. It didn't count, but it was also encouraging.

I was also at Bowie for Chisenhall's big game last night. I caught both swings on video and posted them in case anyone would like a look:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmFyqfMXzB0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8R1koHlxUE

Aug 28, 2009 15:07 PM
rating: 1
 
Jim Humdingding

Good videos, thanks for posting them.

Aug 29, 2009 15:25 PM
rating: 0
 
Jeff Lewandowski

Also have one of Danny Espinosa:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p4AlUCugM4c

I've also got some Alvarez clips in that same collection

Aug 30, 2009 13:30 PM
rating: 0
 
Brian Cartwright

I say Alvarez is called up June 1. No need to start his arb and FA clocks too soon.

Aug 29, 2009 09:56 AM
rating: 1
 
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