Harrison Bader, OF, St. Louis Cardinals (Double-A Springfield): 4-for-5, 2 R, 2B, HR.
Bader was the Cardinals third-round selection last year, and many feel he fell to that round because there was no standout tool. The issue with this, for me, is that when you have five average ones, that can be the standout tool, especially when you can play center field. Be it as a fourth outfielder or as a starter in a premium position, Bader is going to bring value. If it’s the latter, he’ll be regarded as a draft steal.
Others of Note:
Steven Brault, LHP, Pittsburgh Pirates (Triple-A Indianapolis):6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 11 K. It seems like every time I do one of these, there’s some Pirates pitcher striking out a bunch of people. Brault won’t do this very often, but he has enough stuff and command to project as a back-end starter.
Zach Eflin, RHP, Philadelphia Phillies (Triple-A Lehigh Valley): 6.1 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. Eflin’s probably ready, but there’s no room in the Phillies’ talented rotation right now. Wait, what year is this?
Josh Bell, 1B, Pirates (Triple-A Indianapolis): 2-for-4, 2 K. It’s too bad (unless you’re a Pirates fan) the Pirates lineup is so deep, because I for one am very excited to see this kid face big-league pitching. It’s probably not happening anytime soon, though.
Raimel Tapia, OF, Colorado Rockies (Double-A Hartford): 3-for-4, 3 R, 1 HR, 2 K. Came into the night with just a .651 OPS, but the approach has been solid, and more results like this should come on a more consistent basis for the talented outfielder.
David Hess, RHP, Baltimore Orioles (Double-A Bowie): 7 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K. He’ll never miss a ton of bats, but Hess throws four pitches for strikes and should pitch in the back of someone’s rotation someday.
Harrison Musgrave, LHP, Rockies (Double-A Hartford): 7 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K. Musgrave has a plus change, plus command, and not a heck of a lot else. Those two give him a chance to start, though, so, hey, that’s cool.
Aristides Aquino, OF, Reds (High-A Daytona): 2-for-2, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 BB. That’s a lot of twos. Again.
Ian Happ, OF, Chicago Cubs (High-A Myrtle Beach): 2-for-4, HR. I was surprised that the Cubs didn’t challenge Happ with a Double-A assignment to start the year. Considering how dominant he’s been in the Carolina League, maybe they should start that challenge now.
Kohl Stewart, RHP, Minnesota Twins (High-A Fort Myers): 6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 5 K. This was his first start where he struggled to command everything, but Stewart still pitched a shutout and missed bats. That’s a great sign.
Brendan Rodgers, SS, Rockies (Low-A Asheville): 2-for-3, 4 R, 2B, HR. You should probably fear Brendan Rodgers, however. He’s here to mess stuff up.
Pedro Payano, RHP, Rangers (Low-A Hickory): 9 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 11 K. Payano probably should have won prospect of the day. Payano has dominated Low-A, and the stuff suggests it’s not just smoke and mirrors.
Phil Bickford, RHP, San Francisco Giants (Low-A Augusta): 7 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K. That gives him 33 strikeouts in his 20 innings of work compared to just four walks. It’s just about throwing quality strikes on a more consistent basis if/when he makes the move up to High-A.
Domingo Acevedo, RHP, New York Yankees (Low-A Charleston): 8 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K. Lots of good pitching performances tonight. Acevedo has an 80 fastball, a 60 change, and if the curveball becomes more than a show-me pitch, he’s going to miss a crapton of bats.