Friday, October 10th
Andrew Aplin, OF, Astros (Salt River, AFL): 4-4, R, HR. Aplin doesn’t impress you at first glance, but he does enough things well that he should end up being a major leaguer. He doesn’t hit for much power, but he has just enough pop to keep pitchers honest and walks more than he strikes out. As an up-the-middle player with on-base skills and decent speed, he does enough on a baseball field to help a team.
Tyrell Jenkins, RHP, Cardinals (Peoria, AFL): 4 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K. Jenkins could end up being a reliever, but missing more bats like he did on Friday is a good step toward remaining a starter. His stuff is strong and should miss more bats than he currently does, but he got away with it more this year because he threw more strikes. All in all, it’s a step in the right direction, but he’s not developing as quickly as many had expected. It’s a big-league arm, but the role remains to be seen.
Kyle Waldrop, OF, Reds (Surprise, AFL): 4-6, 3 R, 2B, HR. The numbers are far superior to the scouting reports at this point on Waldrop, but the numbers are hard to ignore, Even in the context of the California League, hitting .359/.409/.516 is impressive, and he carried over the success to Double-A. His aggressive approach at the plate will get in the way, but the longer he continues to have success, the more scouts will have to come back for a second look.
Aaron Altherr, OF, Phillies (Aguilas del Zuila, VWL): 2-3, 2 R, HR, BB. Altherr got a brief cameo in the majors this season, but it was only because the Phillies had injury issues and he was the last man standing on the 40-man roster. His power took a step forward this season but his overall approach took a step back against his best competition to date. It’s tough to envision him hitting enough to be an everyday player. For what it’s worth, however, he homered on Sunday as well.
Jhondaniel Medina, RHP, Pirates (Cardenales de Lara, VWL): 1 2/3 IP, H, 2 R (1 ER), 3 BB, K. Medina had an incredible season, allowing a run in just two of his 35 relief appearances. He got away with a high-walk-rate tightrope act, however, something that won’t work in the future.
Saturday, October 11th
Matt Olson, 1B, Athletics (Mesa, AFL): 2-3, 3 R, 2 HR, BB, K. The ultimate three-true-outcome prospect, Olson is showing no signs of slowing down from his remarkable power production this season. With little defensive value to offer, Olson will have to hit to be productive, but he’s had no problem living up to the billing thus far.
Eddie Rosario, OF, Twins (Salt River, AFL): 2-5 (Friday), 2-4, R, SB (Saturday). Rosario took a step back this season, missing part of the year due to a suspension for performance-enhancing drugs, then never really getting started upon his return. He’s squaring the ball up much more frequently this fall, however, and is showing the offensive potential that cemented his prospect status in the first place. He has more value as a second baseman, but the Twins are still using him in center field as well.
Matthew Reynolds, SS, Mets (Scottsdale, AFL): 3-5, 2 R, 2B, HR, K. Of course, when you see a Mets prospect with “SS” next to his name, the immediate reaction is “is he ready for the majors yet?” given the Mets current shortstop situation. Unfortunately for Mets fans, Reynolds, while a nice player, is not the answer either, as he profiles as more of a utility man.
Giovanny Urshela, 3B, Indians (Aguilas de Zuila, VWL): 2-4, R, HR, K. Urshela has flown under the prospect radar a bit, but he has legitimate bat skills that are playing well at the highest levels of the minors. He doesn’t have the prototypical power usually expected in a third baseman, but he could still be an above-average offensive player, which the Indians would gladly take. He’s 23 and just spent the entire 2014 season in Triple-A, so he could be on the verge of contributing soon.
Renato Nunez, 3B, Athletics (Tigres de Aragua, VWL): 3-4, 2B. (Friday); 2-5, R, HR (Saturday). The power is legitimate, though it’s good to see it in a more neutral hitting environment than Stockton was for him this season. His approach gets him in trouble, but as long as the power continues to play, he’ll get away with it. That will be the test as he moves up the organizational ladder.