Prospects of the Day:
- Maikel Franco, 1B, Phillies (Gigantes del Cibao, DWL): 2-5, R, K. That’s hits in three straight games for Franco, who is going to be an extremely streaky hitter throughout his career because he makes a ton of contact, some good and some bad. As an aggressive hitter, he puts a lot of balls in play. That’s not always a good thing, but when he’s seeing the ball well, he’ll be really impressive for stretches. He’s also been playing a lot of first base this winter, for what that’s worth.
- Michael Taylor, CF, Nationals (Indios de Mayaguez, PRWL): 3-6, 2 R, 2B. The Nationals speedster has been having a good winter, hitting .359/.394/.495, but his plate discipline has wavered in Puerto Rico. His walk rate of over 10 percent from the season has dropped to around four percent for the Indios. Still, he’s having a strong carryover from his strongest regular season to date.
- Wilmer Flores, 2B, Mets (Bravos de Margarita, VWL): 2-3. Flores is a ridiculous 13-for-28 and is playing a lot of second base this winter. Neither of those things mean much, but they’re both good signs. The Mets are still looking towards the keystone as a possible spot to get Flores at-bats, and the more he plays there, the more able he’ll become, although he’ll never be a good defender there. Flores will enter spring training trying to make the Mets as a very young utility man, with little left to prove in Triple-A but no positional home on the diamond.
- Jesus Aguilar, 1B, Indians (Leones del Caracas, VWL): 3-5, R, 2B, HR, BB, K. The segment below should really be about Aguilar, who now has 13 home runs on the winter. It’s tough to ignore the questions about his hit tool, but it’s also tough to ignore a .955 OPS over a 165 at-bat sample.
Random Major Leaguer
- Mike Moustakas, 3B, Royals (Cardenales de Lara, VWL): 2-4, 3 R, HR. Moustakas is playing winter ball in Venezuela, although Thursday was just his second appearance for the Cardenales. Still, the more at-bats he has, the better the chance of him recapturing the power that made him a prospect.
- Alen Hanson, SS, Pirates (Toros del Este, DWL): 0-0, R. Hansen served as a pinch-runner in his Dominican League debut, but it will be interesting to see if he gets some significant playing time, and if so, where. Hanson has played primarily shortstop with the Pirates, and played it exclusively this past season, but most scouts agree that it’s not his future home. He projects well at second base, and international league teams tend to be more liberal with using players at positions with which they are less familiar.
Did Jonathan Singleton Homer?: No. 1-for-3, BB, K.