The highly entertaining Rocco DeMaro, who does pre- and post-game work on the Pirates network, has dubbed the group of young Pirate prospects coming up, "the cavalry." Hyperbolic? Sure, a bit, but Pirates fans will take anything they can get at this point. The biggest piece of that cavalry remains in the minors for now, and the reasons are mysterious. He's hitting .322 against lefties this year, so that concern is all but out the window, and with last night's outburst he's up to .286/.374/.550, including a .630 slugging percentage since May 1. C'mon Pittsburgh, does show the Pirates fans all their shiny new toys while keeping the big present out of reach.
Mike Stanton got the call this week, is Morrison far behind? Now batting .317/.421/.554 in 28 Pacific Coast League games, Morrison is arguably more prepared right now to contribute at the big league level, and while Gaby Sanchez has at least held his own at first base in the big leagues this year, he's nothing more than a placeholder for Morrison, and it might be time to pass the torch.
In April of this year, Myers hit just .232, but that shouldn't have been a big surprise to anyone, as the brutal April weather of the Midwest League as well as some of the top pitching environments in the minors often lead to rough starts for players from warm-weather states. Eventually, the talent usually shines through, and with warmer weather comes warmer bats. Hitting .315, slugging .523 and walking like a madman (30 over 111 at-bats) since the calendar flipped to May, Myers remains one of the better bats in the system, which is a good thing, as his rough defense behind the plate has many anticipating a future move defensively.
Others Of Note:
- Brandon Allen, 1B, Reno (Triple-A Reno): 2-for-4, HR (5), R, RBI, BB, 2 K. A mess since his big league struggles last year, but seems to have found his old swing, with 17 total bases in six June games.
- J.P. Arenciba, C, Blue Jays (Triple-A Las Vegas): 2-for-4, HR (10), R, 3 RBI. Five home runs in last 12 games; .259/.310/.503 overall.
- Scott Barnes, LHP, Indians (Double-A Akron): 7 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 10 K. Don't write off based on 6.16 ERA; 19 K, 14 BB in first five starts, 36 K, 10 BB since.
- Mike Baxter, 1B/OF, Padres (Triple-A Portland): 5-for-5, 2B, 3B, HR (4), 2 R, 6 RBI, BB. Not really a prospect, but give credit where credit is due, no?
- Brandon Belt, 1B, Giants (High-A San Jose): 2-for-6, HR (6), 3 R, RBI, BB, SB. Surprisingly has 13 stolen bases this year as well, maybe he's just bored with hitting so much and wanted a new challenge.
- Allen Craig, 1B/OF, Cardinals (Triple-A Memphis): 3-for-4, 2 2B, HR (3), 3 R, 3 RBI, BB. 15-for-31 in June; should be a nice bench bat come September.
- Ross Detwiler, LHP, Nationals (High-A Potomac): 3 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K. Not exactly Strasburg-mania, but a good first step back from hip surgery.
- Tyler Flowers, C, White Sox (Triple-A White Sox): 3-for-4, HR (11), R, 3 RBI, K. Three home runs in last four games; but still only up to .228/.330/.479 and defensive reviews have been poor.
- Dexter Fowler, OF, Rockies (Triple-A Colorado Springs): 2-for-3, 2B, 2 R, 2 BB. On base 22 times in eight games since demotion; to write him off would be foolish.
- Brett Jackson, OF, Cubs (High-A Daytona): 2-for-3, HR (3), 2 R, 5 RBI, BB, K, SB. 8-for-17 in last four games; up to .286/.402/.424 and the power might be finally coming.
- Matt LaPorta, OF, Indians (Triple-A Columbus): 4-for-4, 3 HR (3), 3 R, 5 RBI. Where was that all year?
- Hak-Ju Lee, SS, Cubs (Low-A Peoria): 2-for-3, 2 BB, 2. Starting to coming on strong with four multi-hit games in last seven and consistently increasing walk rate.
- Alex Liddi, 3B, Mariners (Double-A West Tenn): 2-for-3, 2 R, 2 RBI. Power hasn't come with him from High Desert, but he is hitting; 11-for-22 in last six games and .290/.351/.452 overall.
- Mike Trout, OF, Angels (Low-A Cedar Rapids): 3-for-4, 2B, 3B. Brings OPS back over 1.000 at .368/.445/.556; really nothing he can't do.
- Niko Vasquez, 3B, Cardinals (Low-A Quad Cities): 3-for-6, 2 2B, RBI, 2 K. Strange bounce back season with power, tons of walks and even more strikeouts; .267/.423/.472 line is still quite productive.