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Brandon Beachy, RHP, Braves(Double-A Mississippi): 5 IP, 3 H, 2 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 13 K

Thirteen strikeouts in five innings is always going to catch one’s attention, and some further digging shows this guy is a real sleeper.  Signed as an undrafted free agent, Beachy was primarily a slugging infielder at tiny Indiana Wesleyan, but he also relieved at times, and the Braves remembered what they saw from him off the mound and decided to give him a shot.  Sitting in the low 90s, and touching 95-96 at times, the big righty also has a decent curveball and changeup, and in five starts for the M-Braves, he’s whiffed 44 in 30 innings while giving up just 16 hits.

Brandon Belt, 1B, Giants(Double-A Richmond): 3-for-4, 3B, HR (5), 2 R, 3 RBI, BB, K

Is ten games enough to call this? Can we say that the first half explosion in the California League is real? Now 16-for-39 (.410) with five bombs since his move to Double-A, Belt is dominating like nearly no other hitter in baseball, and more and more he’s looking like the real thing.

Gorkys Hernandez, OF, Pirates(Double-A Altoona): 3-for-5, R, K

Hernandez went to the Futures Game this year, but it was more because the World roster needed a centerfielder than anything he was doing on the field. Now, he’s trying to earn the spot after the fact, going 25-for-63 (.397) during his current 14-game hitting streak to raise hit averages to a not as bad .269/.339/.341. He’s one of the best defensive outfielders in the minors, but scouts aren’t ready to call him more than a fourth outfielder or second division starter yet.

John Lamb, LHP, Royals(High-A Wilmington): 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 8 K

When I worked up the list of the Top 11 prospects still in the minors, I put Lamb down as someone in the discussion for the last spot. If I re-did the list today, I’d just put him on there. In his last five starts, he’s gone 28 1/3 innings without giving up an earned run while striking out 38, walking just five, and surrendering 17 hits. He’s not just good, he’s in the argument for the best left-handed prospect in the minors.

Bryce Stowell, RHP, Indians(Triple-A Columbus): 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K

Definitely a name to know, Stowell was a 22nd-round pick in 2008 out of the University of California who was all but off the radar entering the year, but the last time he gave up a run was on May 15 and he’s dominating at Triple-A. With a fastball that sits at 94-97 mph and one scout clocking a 100 mph pitch from him, he’s whiffed 81 over 52 2/3 innings while giving up just 33 hits, and he could be on the verge of the big leagues.

Others Of Note:

  • Dustin Ackley, 2B, Mariners (Triple-A Tacoma): 1-for-5, HR (1), 2 R, 2 RBI, K.  Triple-A debut for last year’s second overall pick; defense at second is shaky, power ceiling still questionable.
  • Brett Anderson, LHP, Athletics (Rookie-level AZL Athletics): 4 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 4 K.  Threw strikes in rehab assignment; didn’t dominate.
  • J.P. Arencibia, C, Blue Jays (Triple-A Las Vegas): 1-for-5, HR (26), R, RBI.  At this point, that’s almost a bad night for him.
  • Charles Blackmon, OF, Rockies (Double-A Tulsa): 3-for-6, 2B, HR (6), 3 R, 4 RBI.  True centerfielder batting .284/.352/.486 but gets little attention; has the tools to play in the big leagues, possibly as an everyday player.
  • Andrew Brackman, RHP, Yankees (Double-A Trenton): 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R (0 ER), 4 BB, 5 K. Best Double-A start but hardly dominating; 4.56 ERA in five starts; 40 base runners in 25 2/3 innings.
  • Domonic Brown, OF, Phillies (Triple-A Lehigh Valley): 3-for-5, R, RBI. .383/.406/.633 in 16 Triple-A games; when you see him in the big leagues is anyone’s guess with a number of scenarios in the mix.
  • Carlos Carrasco, RHP, Indians (Triple-A Columbus): 7 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 6 K. C’mon, what’s a month without at least one teasing good start out of this guy?
  • Robinson Chirinos, C, Cubs (Double-A Tennessee): 3-for-3, 2B, HR (11), 2 R, 5 RBI.  Late bloomer is hitting .323/.408/.592 and plenty of scouts are projecting him as a future every day big leaguer.
  • Jaff Decker, OF, Padres (High-A Lake Elsinore): 2-for-4, 2 2B, 2 R, SB.  Numbers starting to come around after brutal start; 8-for-14 in last four games and .251/.345/.414 overall.
  • Ivan DeJesus, 2B, Dodgers (Triple-A Albuquerque): 3-for-5, 2B, HR (3), 2 R, 2 RBI.  Bouncing back from slow start; hitting .345 since June 1 and .296/.331/.402 overall.
  • Todd Cunningham, OF, Braves (Low-A Rome): 3-for-5, 2 R, K, SB. Second-round pick is 16-for-45 (.356) in last 12 games; solid but unspectacular tools across the board.
  • Juan Francisco, 3B, Reds (Triple-A Louisville): 2-for-4, 2 HR (10), 2 R, 5 RBI, BB, 2 K. .280/.317/.531; lots of power, good arm, bad third baseman, horrible approach.
  • Nick Franklin, SS, Mariners (Low-A Clinton): 1-for-1, HR (16), R, RBI, HBP.  Left game after getting hit by pitch in leg; not considered serious.
  • Greg Halman, OF, Mariners (Triple-A Tacoma): 3-for-5, HR (20), 2 R, 2 RBI.  Slugging .712 since June 1 and hitting .261/.344/.599 overall; still a strikeout machine but the Mariners are desperate for power.
  • Billy Hamilton, 2B/SS, Reds (Rookie-level Billings): 2-for-5, 2B, 3B, 2 R, 2 RBI, K, 2 K.  Up to .289/.375/.422; has scored 20 runs in 22 games.
  • Eric Hosmer, 1B, Royals (High-A Wilmington): 2-for-3, 2B, RBI, BB, K; 1-for-2, 2B, R, RBI, K. Is it time for Double-A? Hitting .353/.430/.547 in a tough hitters park and little left to prove here.
  • Jiwan James, OF, Phillies (Low-A Lakewood): 2-for-6, 2B, CS. 22-game hitting streak sets new team record; still just .265/.317/.362 overall but the tools remain insane.
  • Ryan Kalish, OF, Red Sox (Triple-A Pawtucket): 2-for-5, 3B, R, RBI, K. 19-for-40 (.475) in last ten games and .337/.406/.477 in last ten games; getting a look soon?
  • Craig Kimbrel, RHP, Braves (Triple-A Gwinnett): 0.2 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 4 BB, 0 K. This is why he’s still in the minors; because you never know when this is going to happen.
  • Marc Krauss, OF, Diamondbacks (High-A Visalia): 3-for-5, HR (16), R, 2 RBI.  Home run off a rehabbing Dallas Braden; .322/.379/.538 and should finish the year in Double-A.
  • Leon Landry, OF, Dodgers (Rookie-level Ogden): 3-for-5, 2B, HR (2), 3 R, 3 RBI, SB, K.  Third-round pick out of LSU needs to get out of the Pioneer League; 11-for-16 in last four games and .403/.429/.642 in 15 games overall.
  • Joe Leonard, 3B, Braves (Low-A Rome): 3-for-5, 2B, HR (1), R, 5 RBIs, K. Big full-season debut for third-round pick; huge, slow third baseman, but he can hit and has an excellent arm.
  • Fernando Martinez, OF, Mets (Triple-A Buffalo): 3-for-5, 2 HR (9), 3 R, 2 RBI, K. Is he the best trade chip the Mets have? He’s still just 21 and should generate significant interest.
  • Osvaldo Martinez, SS, Marlins (Double-A Jacksonville): 2-for-5, 2 R, RBI, SB.  Futures Game participant is 15-for-30 in last seven games; .310/.393/.391 overall to go with solid defensive skills.
  • Trey McNutt, RHP, Cubs (High-A Daytona): 5 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 5 K.  Breakout pitcher for Cubs has been up to 96 mph with plus slider; when he throws strikes, he’s nothing short of fantastic.
  • Devin Mesoraco, C, Reds (Double-A Carolina): 2-for-4, HR (9), 2 R, RBI.  Slugging .627 overall with 19 home runs in 271 at-bats; for the most part, scouts think this is for realsies.
  • Justin Marks, LHP, Athletics (Low-A Kane County): 6 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 10 K.  2009 third-round pick is coming on strong with 29 Ks over 15.2 innings in last three starts; similar to Anthony Capra as a potential back-end starter.
  • Andrew Miller, LHP, Marlins (Double-A Jacksonville): 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 6 BB, 2 K.  Still in the tall weeds . . .
  • Shelby Miller, RHP, Cardinals (Low-A Quad Cities): 5 IP, 10 H, 5 R, 1 BB, 9 K.  Up to 98 mph but unhittable and hittable at the same time; 81 Ks in 57.1 innings, but also 58 hits allowed.
  • Jesus Montero, C, Yankees (Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre): 3-for-4, HR (8), 2 R, 2 RBI, BB. Hitting very well of late and likely off the market now that Cliff Lee is as well.
  • Brent Morel, 3B, White Sox (Triple-A Charlotte): 3-for-4, 2B, R, 2 RBI. 14-for-28 in last seven games and .303/.340/.434 overall; If Konerko departs via free agency in the off-season, he’s the third baseman of the future with Viciedo sliding over to first.
  • Francisco Peguero, OF, Giants (High-A San Jose): 3-for-5, 3B, 3 R, RBI, BB, 2 SB.  Speedster doesn’t walk or hit for power, but is batting .417 (25-for-60) in last 15 games and .297/.330/.439 overall with 11 triple and 32 stolen bases in 74 games.
  • Zach Putnam, RHP, Indians (Double-A Akron): 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K. Excelling out of the bullpen; 11 Ks over five one-hit innings in last four appearances.
  • Edinson Rincon, 3B, Padres (Low-A Fort Wayne): 3-for-4, 3B, 2 R, RBI, 2 BB, K.  19-year-old Dominican is batting .322 since June 1; high-ceiling prospect with raw approach but plenty of upside.
  • Wilin Rosario, C, Rockies (Double-A Tulsa): 2-for-5, 2B, HR (13), R, 3 RBI.  If you watched Sunday’s Futures Game, you know what kind of weapon his arm is, and he can really hit too (.279/.333/.521).
  • Gary Sanchez, C, Yankees (Rookie-level GCL Yankees): 2-for-3, 2B, RBI.  Generating tremendous buzz with the bat; up to .378/.455/.622 and doesn’t turn 18 until December.
  • Tanner Scheppers, RHP, Rangers (Triple-A Oklahoma City): 4.2 IP, 11 H, 5 R, 2 BB, 1 K.  As a reliever, he’s big league ready; as a starter, he has eons to go – isn’t the decision here obvious?
  • Jonathan Singleton, 1B, Phillies (Low-A Lakewood): 2-for-4, 2B, R, 3 RBI, BB. Things have slowed down a bit; triple-slash line now a more reasonable .325/.427/.557 and hasn’t gone deep for 16 games.
  • Matt Szczur, OF, Cubs (Short-season Boise): 3-for-4, 2B, 2 R, RBI.  Speedy fifth-round pick is 12-for-28 (.429) in first seven Northwest League games.
  • Michael Taylor, OF, Athletics (Triple-A Sacramento): 4-for-6, 2B, R, 3 RBI, CS.  Staring to come around? 14-for-40 (.350) during current ten-game hitting streak.
  • Brandon Waring, 3B, Orioles (Double-A Bowie): 2-for-4, HR (15), R, 3 RBI, BB. Slugging .717 in July; but .245 batting average and 114 whiffs in 83 games doesn’t bode well.