Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Cubs shortstop Javier Baez and Nats righty Lucas Giolito.
Hitter of the Night: Javier Baez, SS, Cubs (Iowa, AAA): 2-4, 3 R, 3B, HR, K, SB.
The good with the bad, people. We’ve got to take the good with the bad. We’re going to get four-strikeout games and three-homer games. They might even be back to back. It’s going to be a wild ride, and it’s going to be a lot of fun. Even for Cubs fans.
Pitcher of the Night: Lucas Giolito, RHP, Nationals (Hagerstown, A-): 4 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 6 K.
As strict as the Nats are with their young pitchers, they weren’t going to let Giolito keep going just because he hadn’t given up a hit. He’s missing a ton of bats and living up to all of the hype thus far, and it’s only a matter of time before he begins dominating deeper into games.
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Notes on prospects who stood out over the weekend, including Dodgers infielder Corey Seager.
Friday, June 6
Alberto Tirado, RHP, Blue Jays (Lansing, A-): 1 2/3 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 3 BB, 3 K. The first go-round in full-season ball hasn’t gone as the Blue Jays had planned for Tirado, who has had major difficulties throwing strikes. The talent is still there, so don’t get too worried about the results, as he’s hardly the first 19-year-old to have trouble with his control upon reaching the Midwest League.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Padres outfielder Rymer Liriano and Marlins righty Jose Urena.
Hitter of the Night: Rymer Liriano, OF, Padres (San Antonio, AA): 3-4, R, 2B, HR.
It took some time for Liriano to get his timing back after a year lost to Tommy John surgery, but when he did, the power grew into his swing much like scouts believed it always would. His approach may keep him from being a star, but he should be an above-average regular at a corner outfield spot.
Pitcher of the Night: Jose Urena, RHP, Marlins (Jacksonville, AA): 8 IP, 3 H, 0 R, BB, 7 K.
Urena’s peripherals have taken a step back since a promotion to Double-A, but he still profiles as a mid-rotation starter. You can read a full report on him from Ethan Purserhere.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Diamondbacks third baseman Jacob Lamb and Red Sox lefty Henry Owens.
Hitter of the Night: Jacob Lamb, 3B, Diamondbacks (Mobile, AA): 4-5, 3 R, 2B, HR.
If the questions about Lamb were how he would handle advanced pitching with some holes in his swing, the answer is that he can handle it quite well. Lamb has a patient approach at the plate that helps him draw his walks but also leads to strikeouts, but if he continues to produce power numbers, the Diamondbacks will take it. He’s a doubles machine right now, but if a few more of those balls start going over the wall, he could be more of an impact bat than scouts give him credit for.
Pitcher of the Night: Henry Owens, LHP, Red Sox (Portland, AA): 8 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 K.
It’s all about fastball command for Owens, who generates great downward plane that makes him hard to square up. When he throws good strikes, he dominates.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Mariners outfielder Jabari Blash and Nats righty Lucas Giolito.
Hitter of the Night: Jabari Blash, OF, Mariners (Tacoma, AAA): 3-5, 3 R, 3 HR, K.
Blash has struggled mightily since a promotion to Triple-A a few weeks ago, but Tuesday’s game offers a glimpse of what his power can do. He’s flawed, with a poor swing path that leads to large strikeout numbers, but he does work walks and hit for power, giving him a chance to carve out a bench role.
Pitcher of the Night: Lucas Giolito, RHP, Nationals (Hagerstown, A-): 3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K.
The Nationals are taking it very easy with Giolito, who hadn’t pitched since May 11 despite being healthy. His three-inning outing was pre-determined by the Nats, so there are no red flags associated with the early departure. He struck out five of the 12 batters he faced, and it’s not his fault he didn’t face more.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Reds outfielder Jesse Winker.
Prospect of the Night: Jesse Winker, OF, Reds (Bakersfield, A+): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 BB, K.
The physical tools may not be loud, but the baseball ones are. Winker’s ability to control the strike zone helps his bat play up, and his power has spiked in the California League. It will be a good test to see how much of this improvement is maintained once he leaves Bakersfield, but for now, the returns on the 49th-overall pick in 2012 are very good.
Notes on prospects who stood out over the weekend, including Astros righty Mike Foltynewicz and Cubs second baseman Arismendy Alcantara.
Friday, May 30
Mike Foltynewicz, RHP, Astros (Oklahoma City, AAA): 7 2/3 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 10 K. No one has ever doubted Foltynewicz's velocity, which reaches triple digits, but it's his ability to command the fastball and the development of his breaking ball that will determine whether his future is as a starter or a reliever. Starts like this are a big step toward the former end.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson and Cardinals lefty Tim Cooney.
Hitter of the Night: Tim Anderson, SS, White Sox (Winston-Salem, A+): 3-5, R, HR, K.
Anderson has plus tools but is also extremely raw, which makes his .279 batting average somewhat impressive, but oh my goodness does his 42-to-4 K:BB rate scare me.
Pitcher of the Night: Tim Cooney, LHP, Cardinals (Memphis, AAA): 9 IP, H, 0 R, 2 BB, 7 K.
A minor-league complete game is rare, but Cooney was two pitches away from the even-more-rare minor-league “Maddux,” finishing at 101 pitches. His strikeout rates have dropped in Triple-A this year and his walk rate his spiked, a surprising occurrence for a player who gets by with average stuff thanks to plus command.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Carlos Correa, Kris Bryant, and Tyler Glasnow.
Hitters of the Night
Carlos Correa, SS, Astros (Lancaster, A+): 3-4, R, 2B, HR. There is little doubt that Correa is going to be a very good player, even though he’s still just 19 and a few years away from the majors. The big question is just how good. If he remains at shortstop and his power reaches its ceiling, he’ll end up being among the top five players in the game.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Rangers catcher Jorge Alfaro and Marlins lefty Andrew Heaney.
Hitter of the Night: Jorge Alfaro, C, Rangers (Myrtle Beach, A+): 5-5, 2B, 3B.
It’s days like this that make scouts salivate over Alfaro. Sure, he’s still ultra-aggressive at the plate, a problem that may ultimately hold him back, but how many catching prospects can collect five hits in a game, have one of them be a triple, and still not feature their best tool (his arm)?
Pitcher of the Night: Andrew Heaney, LHP, Marlins (New Orleans, AAA): 6 IP, H, 0 R, 0 BB, 7 K.
The real test in the minors is the jump to Double-A, but Heaney handled that with aplomb. The jump to Triple-A hasn’t slowed him down either, as he’s now allowed just eight hits and one run in his first 11 innings while striking out 14. It’s hard to believe he won’t be in the majors to help the Marlins by the end of June.
Notes on prospects who stood out over the Memorial Day Weekend.
While I hope everyone had a wonderful long weekend, and I know I did, let’s not forget that we got the extra day off not so our big-league heroes could wear camouflage uniforms, but to honor the real heroes who wore those colors because they had to.
Notes on prospects who stood out yesterday, including Cubs shortstop Javier Baez and Cardinals lefty Rob Kaminsky.
Hitter of the Night: Javier Baez, SS, Cubs (Iowa, AAA): 4-5, 2 R, 2 2B, HR.
No, one hot week doesn’t make up for six horrendous weeks, but it looks like Baez is officially out of his funk. He’s now 12-for-his-last-28 over his past seven games, and the power has returned as well, with five doubles and three home runs in that stretch. The most important indication that he’s turning things around, however, is that he has just five strikeouts over that span, and three of those came on Wednesday. For a player whose free-swinging ways are what gets him in trouble, putting the ball in play is half the battle, because when he does, he usually does it very hard.
Pitcher of the Night: Rob Kaminsky, LHP, Cardinals (Peoria, A-): 6 IP, 2 H, 2 R (0 ER), BB, 9 K.
Kaminsky’s big-time curveball has the ability to rack up strikeouts by the bunches when he’s throwing strikes, which he hasn’t done enough this year in his full-season debut.