Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Jorge Alfaro, Anthony Alford, Francis Martes, and Jake Woodford.
Prospect of the Day:Jorge Alfaro, C, Philadelphia Phillies (Double-A Reading): 4-for-5, 3 RBI
I included the RBI because it’s just weird to have the prospect of the day without any other stats, but the fact that Alfaro didn’t have any doubles or homers is kinda the point. This was once a player who was all-power, no-hit-tool, and he has hit .287 in Double-A while still showing the plus power. Is he going to hit for that high of average at the big-league level? Probably not, but he no longer has to hit for power to become a regular; the defense and hit tool have reached a level where above-average power will suffice. I’d bet on it at this point.
Others of Note
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Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Ranger Suarez, Conner Greene, Ian Happ, and Scott Schebler.
Prospect of the Day: Ranger Suarez, LHP, Phillies (Short-Season Williamsport): 7 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER, BB, 5 K
After two years in the now-defunct Venezuelan Summer League, followed by a dominating showing with a 0.65 ERA in 15 appearances in the GCL in 2015, Suarez has continued pitching well as a 20-year old in the NYPL. A quick-armed lefty with an average fastball, two secondary pitches with potential, and a strong command profile, Suarez fired this seven-inning no-hitter while flashing all of these traits. Most scouts view Suarez as a potential back-end starter or lefty reliever down the line.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Peter Lambert, Anthony Garcia, Austin Gomber, and Travis Blankenhorn.
Prospect of the Day: Peter Lambert, RHP, Colorado Rockies (Low-A Asheville): 6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 8 K.
Lambert’s ERA by month: 3.20, 2.05, 1.96, 12.18. One of these things is not like the other; one of these things is July. Much of that damage was done in a start where he gave up 10 runs and didn’t make it out of the second inning, which always puts a damper on the ERA. My point is, Lambert has been great for most of the year, and his overall ERA of 4.43 doesn’t come close to telling the story of how impressive he’s been for the bulk of 2016. It’s a good stat, but it’s a flawed one. Lambert is one of the best pitching prospects in a loaded Colorado system.
Notes on prospects who stood out over the weekend, including Isan Diaz, Josh Staumont, Patrick Weigel, and Aristides Aquino.
Prospect of the Weekend:Isan Diaz, IF, Milwaukee Brewers (Single-A Wisconsin): 3-for-4, 2 R, 3B, 2 HR, BB, K
We generally try to spread out the prospect of the day/weekend, but I’m pretty sure this is the second or third time Diaz has won it, and for good reason. He’s torn the cover off the baseball for the month of July, hitting .333/.417/.726 with seven homers. That’s good. Whether it’s at shortstop, second base, or whatever position he plays, Diaz can be a regular there. The offensive upside is that high.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Chih-Wei Hu, Jordan Patterson, Jeff Brigham, and Hoy Jun Park.
Prospect of the Day: Chih-Wei Hu, RHP, Tampa Bay Rays (Double-A Montgomery): 7 IP, 2 H, B, 6 K.
Hu was one of the most impressive arms I saw climb the hill at the Futures Game, sitting mid-90s (touching 97) and complimenting it with a devastating palm ball that moved like a splitter with fade at 89-90. There’s some deception to his release, which helps the fastball play up despite a fairly straight path, and it makes the slide-piece tougher to pick up as well. He’s still learning how to sequence and miss bats consistently, but the stuff is there for a quality no. 4 starter, and he’s got a frame you can hang all of the innings on.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Yadier Alvarez, Engelb Vielma, Austin Gomber, and Christin Stewart.
Prospect of the Day: Yadier Alvarez, RHP, Los Angeles Dodgers (Single-A Great Lakes): 5 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 10 K.
Alvarez showed he was way too advanced to be facing AZL pitching and earned a promotion to the Midwest League. He’s probably too advanced to be here, too. Alvarez has an easy 80 fastball that will touch triple-digits with life, and he’s showing a plus slider at times to give hitters from both sides of the plate fits. The command still has a long way to go and there’s some effort here that may make him a reliever long term, but outside of Julio Urias, he has the highest upside of any arm in the Dodgers system.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Anthony Alford, Gleyber Torres, Amir Garrett, and Chris Paddack.
Prospect of the Day: Anthony Alford, OF, Toronto Blue Jays (High-A Dunedin): 2-for-6, R, 2 BB, K, 3 SB.
This has been a disappointing season for Alford, without question, but it’s games like this that remind you just how talented he is. Keep in mind that not only is he only 21 years old, but he also had his development in baseball delayed by that egg-shaped sport. He’s still a tremendous athlete who has shown he has a game plan at the plate, and he’s going to be a big-leaguer because of his speed and ability to go get it in center field. It’s not a fast-track profile, but if you’re patient, this could be a leadoff hitter someday.
Notes on prospects who stood out over the weekend, including Kolby Allard, Cody Ponce, Patrick Kivlehan, and Myles Jaye.
Prospect of the Weekend:
Kolby Allard, LHP, Atlanta Braves (Short-season Danville): 6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K
Even with the all of the talent the Braves have accumulated on the pitching front in the last two drafts, Allard is still the guy with the highest upside, and he’s pitched like it since being “demoted” to the Appy League. All three of his pitches will flash plus—though the change is mostly an average offering—and he throws all these pitches for strikes. There’s work to be done, but this is your ever-so-rare, high-floor, high-ceiling pitcher.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Chris Paddack, Brandon Woodruff, Elniery Garcia, and Luis Alexander Basabe.
Prospect of the Day: Chris Paddack, RHP, San Diego Padres (Low-A Fort Wayne): 5 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 9 K.
Paddack’s walk was his third of the season, and the nine strikeouts give him a K:BB ratio of 21-to-1. That is Kershaw-esque, my friends. Acquired in the Fernando Rodney deal, Paddack has a filthy change that flashes plus-plus, and it plays up because of his above-average fastball and his ability to throw those pitches for strikes (obviously). He’ll need to improve the curveball, but if it can become an average pitch, he’s a no. 3 starter.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Scott Blewett, Sal Romano, Stephen Gonsalves, and Cornelius Randolph.
Prospect of the Day: Scott Blewett, RHP, Kansas City Royals (Low-A Lexington): 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 K.
Blewett struck out seven in his first three innings of work, before “slowing” to the statline you see above. A second-round pick out of New York in 2014, Blewett has struggled to show a lick of consistency as a professional, but when you see him on days like yesterday, there’s a lot to like. The fastball is plus, the curveball isn’t far from that vicinity, and he’ll mix in a fringe-average change for good measure. There’s a long way to go, but the Royals have no reason to panic about this talented righty just yet.