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.
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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.
Updates on Jose De Leon, Brett Phillips, Duane Underwood, and more.
Hitter of the Day:A.J. Reed, 1B, Astros (Lancaster, A+): 4-4, 2 R, 2B, 3B, HR, BB. That’s a cycle, for those of you scoring at home. Much like his Jethawk teammate discussed below, Reed isn’t facing much of a challenge in the California League. He’s not without holes in his swing, but his patient approach is allowing him to get into mostly hitter’s counts against High-A pitching that often falls behind without breaking-ball command and is forced to throw fastballs. Reed feasts on that scenario, and has proven his ability to hit when in advantageous situations. He’ll be tested in Double-A soon.
Updates on Yoan Moncada, Franklin Barreto, Reynaldo Lopez, and more.
Hitter of the Day:Yoan Moncada, 2B, Red Sox (Greenville, A-): 1-2, 3 R, 2B, BB, 2 SB. We’ve gotten only glimpses of his shining talent thus far in his brief professional career, but fans in Greenville on Monday got a glimpse of the full Moncada. He has a unique combination of speed and power for such a young player, and when coupled with his physical development, it’s easy to see why he was, and still is, so highly regarded. Despite some early struggles, there is absolutely no luster off of his prospect shine.
Updates on Alex Reyes, Jeff Hoffman, Brian Goodwin, and more.
Hitter of the Day: Joe Munoz, C, Diamondbacks (Kane County, A-): 4-4, 4 R, 2 HR, BB. Before Thursday, it's been a struggle for Munoz, a 2012 second-rounder, thanks to an overly aggressive approach that gets him in trouble. His power will have to carry him, and as our own Mauricio Rubio told me, “He's got solid average raw power but he won't tap into it much in game as he climbs the ladder.” It's the aggressiveness that gets in his way, a particularly bad sign for a hitter much older than his level of competition. Still, he has some power so he’ll get his chances.
Updates on Lewis Brinson, Trevor Story, Raul Mondesi, and more.
Hitter of the Day: Lewis Brinson, OF, Rangers (High Desert, A+): 2-3, 2 R, 2 HR, BB. Brinson is the epitome of a scout-splitter, a player who you can ask five scouts about and get five different projections and five different opinions. Look no further than our own team for an example. There is little to doubt in Brinson’s raw tools, with the only real question being how the development of his hit tool will allow them to play in games. He’s making big strides in that regard, however, continuing to limit his strike-out rate (which was once off the charts) to a level where it will allow his power to play in games. If he can continue that trend after he makes the jump to Double-A, we’re talking about a legitimate impact prospect.