Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Jays outfielder Dalton Pompey and Mets righty Gabriel Ynoa.
Hitter of the Day: Dalton Pompey, OF, Blue Jays (New Hampshire, AA): 4-6, R, HR, 2 K.
You didn’t forget about him, did you? After stumbling in the majors this season (despite being my preseason pick for AL Rookie of the Year—oops!), Pompey is back where he probably should have been all along. Simply put, the Blue Jays rushed him. At just 22, Pompey was a late bloomer to begin with, and once he took the Florida State League by storm, the Blue Jays fast-tracked him in an attempt to fill a hole at the major-league level. He got just a half-season in High-A ball, just 31 games in Double-A, and just 12 in Triple-A before reaching the majors. Despite his success in the minors, it was too much. He was in over his head this spring, and still a mess after being demoted to Triple-A. He’s still technically rookie-eligible (and thus technically still a prospect by our standards), and more importantly, he’s still just as talented as ever, as a potential up-the-middle and top-of-the-order dual threat.
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Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Brewers outfielder Clint Coulter and Nats righty Lucas Giolito.
Hitter of the Day: Clint Coulter, OF, Brewers (Brevard County, A+): 3-4, 2 R, 3 2B, BB, K.
Coulter may not be the most polished hitter with the most polished swing, but he generates good bat speed and his strong frame leads to good power production, even in the tough Florida State League. He’s also taking to the outfield nicely, and while it’s not always fundamentally sound and natural, he’s a better athlete out there than was expected from the converted catcher.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including the Cardinals' Harrison Bader and Rob Kaminsky.
Hitter of the Day: Harrison Bader, OF, Cardinals (State College, SS): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, K.
I wasn’t a huge fan of Bader’s swing when he was at the University of Florida, but there’s no doubting his production in college, and this is a heck of a professional debut. He shows good power and a good feel for the barrel, but there’s a prolonged weight transfer that concerns me. If he can control that against better offspeed stuff, however, the Cardinals could have a steal in the third round.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Tigers outfielder Steven Moya and Marlins righty Austin Brice.
Hitter of the Day: Steven Moya, OF, Tigers (Toledo, AAA): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, K.
Moya’s top-of-the-charts power hasn’t played in games this year nearly as well as it has in the past, thanks to more experienced competition that didn’t struggle to figure out the book on the Tigers’ hulking slugger. His complete lack of pitch recognition has held him back and should ultimately be the death knell in his development, keeping him on the Quad-A train back and forth from the majors.
Notes on prospect who stood out yesterday, including Reds outfielder Yorman Rodriguez and Cardinals lefty Rob Kaminsky.
Hitter of the Day:Yorman Rodriguez, OF, Reds (Louisville, AAA): 3-4, 2 R, 2B, HR.
Talk about a big day. Rodriguez not only had a monster showing at the plate, but he was also named to the Futures Game roster in his future home ballpark, a dream for any prospect. Rodriguez feels like he’s been around forever, in part because he has been, now in his seventh year of minor-league baseball. Still, he’s just 22. He’s never hit for the power expected from him, but that doesn’t mean there’s not more in there. Despite all this time in the minors, he’s still a bit of a project, but he also may still have some potential in the tank.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager and Phillies righty Colin Kleven.
Hitter of the Day:Corey Seager, SS, Dodgers (Oklahoma City, AAA): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, BB, K.
There’s not much left for Seager to prove in the minors, nor is there much blocking him in the majors, other than the respect for a veteran like Jimmy Rollins. That shouldn’t be dismissed, but it also shouldn’t stand in the way of a championship team. Seager is the best position player remaining in the minors after this first half’s run of prospect promotions, though he’s not atop the list on the merit of attrition alone. He’s a stud in the making, especially for as long as he can remain at shortstop. Many believe he’ll eventually have to move to third base, and they may well be correct, but in the meantime he’s more than capable of handling the six spot and is ready to take over in Los Angeles.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Indians infielder Erik Gonzalez and Twins righty Kohl Stewart.
Hitter of the Day:Erik Gonzalez, SS, Indians (Akron, AA): 3-4, 2 R, 2 2B, HR, BB.
Gonzalez is a glove-first infielder who has offered little pop over a long track record of minor-league baseball, but since he’s 6-foot-3, there are some who believe that there’s more thump in his bat. It’ll always be the glove that carries him, though, as his approach at the plate gets him in trouble more than anything else. Still, Gonzalez’s overall skill set should eventually carry him into a big-league role.
Updates on Aaron Nola, Stephen Piscotty, Brandon Nimmo, and more.
Hitter of the Day:Garin Cecchini, 3B, Red Sox (Pawtucket, AAA): 4-5, 3 R, 2 HR, K. The knock on Cecchini over the years has been the lack of power he provided at a position that traditionally requires such output. Thursday doesn’t change that, but it’s nice to see he has it in him. He’s currently wallowing away in Triple-A, blocked by an influx of veterans brought aboard this offseason, but as far as I know, he doesn’t Instagram while on the toilet, so there’s that.
Updates on Steven Matz, Trea Turner, Alex Reyes, and more.
Hitter of the Day:Trayce Thompson, OF, White Sox (Charlotte, AAA): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR. It’s been a pretty strong week in the Thompson household. While Trayce isn’t having any parades thrown for him, he is once again running into his share of home runs. The power is the calling card for Thompson, though he does offer value with his glove as well. The question for Thompson is just how much the power is going to be able to play against advanced pitching, thanks to some major approach issues and holes in his big swing.