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Hitter of the Night: Lewis Brinson, OF, Rangers (Myrtle Beach, A+): 4-8, 2 R, HR, K. The progress that Brinson had made in Low-A ball this year appeared to have come
unraveled upon his promotion to the Carolina League, but he got back on track in a 16-inning affair on Wednesday. He’s still extremely aggressive at the plate and has some swing-and-miss in his game, but he’s productive nonetheless.

Pitcher of the Night: Braden Shipley, RHP, Diamondbacks (Visalia, A+): 7 IP, 5 H, R, BB, 9 K.
We can look past Shipley’s ERA, which is hovering around 4.00 after his latest outing, and look toward his high strikeout rate to take away the positives from his first full season. He pairs a mid-90s fastball with a plus changeup to generate swings and misses, and that tandem should generate even more success once he gets out of the California League.

Best of the Rest

Mark Appel, RHP, Astros (Corpus Christi, AA): 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 4 K. Appel’s promotion to Double-A despite a 9.74 ERA in Lancaster made waves in both the media and apparently within the organization, but he’s now turned in two straight strong starts, which is something to build on. That’s still not the standard we’re used to holding top overall picks to, but his first few months were so disastrous that it’s where we’re left.

Max Pentecost, C, Blue Jays (Vancouver, SS): 2-5, 2 R, 3B, 2 K. Pentecost is doing what a college bat should to in short-season ball by hitting over .300, though in the extremely small sample, it’s coming without much power or control of the strike zone.

Albert Almora, OF, Cubs (Tennessee, AA): 2-4, R, HR. Almora has his struggles and will continue to scuffle against advanced pitching as the Cubs continue to test him, but you have to credit him for his ability to make adjustments. His natural hit tool is advanced for his age, but he’s still refining its in-game application.

Jesus Aguilar, 1B, Indians (Columbus, AAA): 2-3, 2 R, 2B, HR, 2 BB. This past winter, the combination of a ridiculous hot streak and little baseball action to speak of made Aguilar a regular in these parts. We haven’t talked much about him since a brutal stint in the majors earlier this season, but he’s still mashing away in Triple-A, something we’ve come to expect. He’ll get more chances in the majors because of his power, but he should get to know the route back and forth from Columbus to Cleveland quite well.

Michael Conforto, OF, Mets (Brooklyn, SS): 3-3, 2 R, BB, SB. Days like this that send a batting average skyrocketing over the .400 mark will generate more buzz around a prospect than is healthy, especially for a recent first-round pick who is off to a hot start to his professional career. Conforto is a solid hitting prospect who should be an everyday player when it’s all said and done, but the combination of being in the Mets system and feasting on inferior competition is bound to set up more hype than is necessary.

Trea Turner, SS, Padres (Fort Wayne, A-): 2-5, R, HR, 2 K. Turner added to his incredibly hot run in the Midwest League with a show of power, something he’s not going to do too often.

Rosell Herrera, SS, Rockies (Modesto, A+): 3-3, 2 R, HR, 2 BB. Herrera is once again struggling with his first attempt at a new level and there are questions about the future of his bat. If he has to move to third base, he likely won’t hit for enough power, but for now he’s still playing primarily shortstop.

Trevor May, RHP, Twins (Rochester, AAA): 6 2/3 IP, 5 H, 0 R, BB, 5 K. May has long been a guy whose numbers didn’t add up to the stuff scouts saw from him, but this year it’s all coming together. He’s striking out fewer batters than ever, but he’s still fanning over a batter per inning and he’s throwing more strikes than ever. He appears ready for a test in the big leagues.

Jared Mitchell, OF, White Sox (Birmingham, AA): 4-4, 2 R, HR, CS. At 25 and having stalled out in the upper minors, it’s hard to justify Mitchell as a prospect anymore. He’s just never been able to consistently translate his premium athletic abilities into baseball production, though he is currently in the midst of his best stretch of baseball in the upper minors.

Courtney Hawkins, OF, White Sox (Winston-Salem, A+): 3-4, 3 R, HR, BB. There’s a decent chance I copy and paste the above paragraph about Mitchell and use it to describe Hawkins in a few years, but his power is translating better in his second stint in the Carolina League than it did last year. That gives him a chance to find a niche in the majors somewhere, though it’s tough to see him playing every day once advanced pitching begins to exploit his flaws as a hitter.

Peter O’Brien, C, Yankees (Trenton, AA): 3-4, 2 R, 2B, 2 HR. The power display O’Brien is putting on this season has been incredible, with 33 home runs to his name, but he’s been exploited by Double-A pitching and is basically an all-or-nothing hitter who makes a ton of outs when he’s not hitting the ball over the fence.

Fight Another Day

Sean Reid-Foley, RHP, Blue Jays (GCL, R): 2 1/3 IP, 6 H, 6 ER, 3 BB, K. It’s amazing what one bad outing can do to your ERA when you have less than eight professional innings your belt. Actually, it’s not that amazing; it’s just math. Still, Reid-Foley’s ERA skyrocketed on Wednesday thanks to his worst outing as a professional. There were some scouts who were concerned about his delivery leading up to the draft, but it’s an arm full of potential.

Notable Pitching Performances

  • Jen-Ho Tseng, RHP, Cubs (Kane County, A-): 7 IP, 3 H, R, 0 BB, 3 K.
  • Archie Bradley, RHP, Diamondbacks (Mobile, AA): 6 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 6 K.
  • Michael Fulmer, RHP, Mets (St. Lucie, A+): 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 5 K.
  • Nick Kingham, RHP, Pirates (Indianapolis, AAA): 6 IP, 5 H, 4 R (3 ER), 2 BB, 5 K.
  • Michael Lorenzen, RHP, Reds (Pensacola, AA): 5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K.

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beeker99
7/31
I think the 2 HR last night give O'Brien 33 for the year, not 31 - though the milb.com boxscore says it is 23!, which is definitely wrong.

He makes too many outs, and not enough contact, but he's in his first partial season in AA and isn't old (or young) for the level. Is it feasible than he might make adjustments and end up being a major league hitter? I don't recall him being such an all or nothing hitter last year, or earlier this year in High A. Is the problem that AA pitching is better?
moore315512
7/31
Yeah it is 33. He had 31 entering the night. Thanks Shaun.

There's definitely a good chance he becomes a major league hitter simply because power is hard to come by, but there are a lot of questions. First, most scouts aren't sold on him remaining behind the plate. If he moves it will be to first base which changes the profile dramatically and puts all of the pressure on his bat.

Double-A pitching is definitely better, so that's certainly a part of it, but the issues he's having aren't new. He's always had contact and plate discipline issues, but they're being magnified against better pitching. That will only get worse as he moves up.
lyricalkiller
7/31
Changed
dtothew
7/31
BOOM
mhmosher
7/31
Just a question - how many recent Mets prospects have been overhyped?
moore315512
7/31
It's not just the Mets. This tends to happen in most major media markets. It also happens with teams who are struggling/rebuilding and have built up the promotion of their future. When the two come together like it has for the Mets recently, the hype can get out if control.

Most of the Mets prospects look like their panning out so the over-hype hasn't been til bad, though I'd say the Jenrry Mejia
Fiasco from a few years ago was a but much. I also saw some people saying that Rafael Montero was as good as Noah Syndergaard while Montero was doing well in the upper minors, and that's a joke. In general, it hasn't been too bad though.

My main point was that Conforto is good but let's not go crazy because he's hitting .400 in short-season ball.
mhmosher
8/04
I gotcha. Yeah, the Mets are definitely selling the "future is bright" card lately. I'm much more cynical than that.
kohlmss07
7/31
What kind of stock should we be putting into John Lamb's recent run of dominance? Is his stuff bouncing back to previous levels?
jbeyer88
7/31
And Javier Baez and Jorge Soler homered ... :)
hyprvypr
7/31
I presumed you mean Trevor May is 'walking fewer batters than ever'?
lyricalkiller
8/01
He's actually striking out fewer than ever. It's still a lot. It's just fewer than ever. (And he has walked fewer before.)