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April 17, 2014 6:00 am
These promising minor leaguers saw their stocks tumble in 2013 but have started 2014 on a high note.
This is the time of year when every article begins with the caveat that stats aren’t worth much right now, but, hey, here are some stats. Well, this is like that except it’s fully acknowledging that the stats aren’t worth anything. All they’re here for is to key in on some players who were highly thought of at one point who struggled through a rough 2013 and have come out of the gates quickly. This isn’t to impart meaning to those good starts, but just identify them as prospects to monitor as the season progresses:
Trevor Story - SS - Colorado Rockies
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May 13, 2013 5:00 am
Checking in on Oscar Taveras, Miguel Sano, Gabriel Guerrero, and others.
Michael Wacha, RHP, Cardinals (Triple-A Memphis)
The Cardinals’ top pick in the 2012 draft, Wacha received an aggressive assignment to Triple-A Memphis despite logging just 21 pro innings last summer. He is proving plenty apt for the challenge, posting a 1.99 ERA while yielding just 27 hits in 40 2/3 innings. Regarded as a polished arm as an amateur at Texas A&M, Wacha has made some quick strides as a pro. The progression hasn’t really changed his projection as a no. 3 starter, but he’s perhaps closer to realizing that potential than initially thought.
The 21-year-old righty has shown lots of polish early this season, pounding the strike zone with a three-pitch mix that includes a 90-95 mph fastball. He generates a steep downhill plane from his 6-foot-6 frame. His secondary pitches play well off the fastball––particularly his deceptive low-80s changeup, which is already a plus offering. Wacha’s curveball has been a key development since college; it’s presently average to solid-average and should become a third plus in the near future.
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