Prospect of the Day:
Alec Hansen, RHP, Chicago White Sox (Rookie Great Falls): 6 IP, R (0 ER), 3 H, 3 BB, 10 K
It’s not entirely clear to me why Hansen is still pitching in Rookie ball, as his second consecutive double-digit strikeout game pushes him to 63 punchouts and 12 hits allowed in his first 38 2/3 professional innings. His arm action is as scary as his numbers are devastating, but if—big if—he can command the ball in a starting role, he can do wonderful things.
Others of Note:
Joey Gallo, 3B, Texas Rangers (Triple-A Round Rock): 3-5, 3 R, 2B, 3B, HR, 3 RBI, 2 K. Good Gallo sat a single short of the cycle after his first three at-bats, but then bad Gallo showed up and whiffed the rest of the night away. So it goes.
Ty Blach, LHP, San Francisco Giants (Triple-A Sacramento): 9 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 7 K. A command lefty that tops at 88 and lives off a diving changeup that he’ll drop on righties and lefties alike? Bring him to me. That’s eight straight quality starts with 43 whiffs to just seven walks in 58 innings during that stretch.
Richard Urena, SS, Toronto Blue Jays (Double-A New Hampshire): 3-5, 3 R, 3 3B, RBI, K. Scouts still see a relatively raw player in Urena, but tell that to Double-A pitchers. Last night’s outburst—seriously, three triples?!—runs his combined hitting streak between the Florida State and Eastern leagues to 13, and the defense has taken a nice step forward this year as well. This is arguably now the best prospect in a getting-deeper Toronto system.
Andrew Stevenson, CF, Washington Nationals (Double-A Harrisburg): 3-5, R, 2B, RBI, SB. Stevenson has struggled to get on base consistently since his promotion to Double-A, though he’s made some adjustments recently and the glove remains an unquestioned asset up the middle.
Greg Allen, CF, Cleveland Indians (Double-A Akron): 4-4, R, SB. I’ll have some notes up on Allen next week after catching him in Portland last weekend, but the short version is that he’s a solid switch-hitter with pesky contact skills and good command of the zone, he’s fast, and he plays an instinctual center field.
Matt Chapman, 3B, Oakland Athletics (Double-A Midland): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 3 RBI. After a quick start to the season, Chapman quickly fell victim to the adjustments of Double-A pitchers, and it has taken him a few months to get his feet back under him. The bat started to pick up a bit at the end of July, and he’s been positively en fuego over the past week, with yesterday’s effort his second multi-homer game in his last four.
Travis Demeritte, 2B, Atlanta Braves (High-A Carolina): 3-4, BB, R, 2 3B, RBI, K. On another night his multi-triple game would be worthy of more celebration, but yesterday was Richard Urena’s day. It’s been an interesting year for Demeritte, though: He’s on pace for 60 extra base-hits and 160 strikeouts, making him one of the more fascinating boom-or-bust types who we’ll learn a lot more about next year at Double-A.
Johan Mieses, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers (High-A Rancho Cucamonga): 2-3, R, 2B, HR, 3 RBI, K, HBP. Mieses struggled with two primary issues at the plate for most of this year: a big, long, max-effort swing and off-speed recognition. The Dodgers have overhauled Mieses’ setup and mechanics into the zone as the summer has progressed, quieting him down and taming his weight transfer to get him more direct to the ball. That’s had a profound effect of late, as the adjustments have driven a huge power outburst in which he’s crushed six homers in his last 10 games and dragged his average up 30 points over the past month. An aggressive approach and struggles with identifying benders and divers will still likely limit the hit tool long term, especially against righties, but he’s taken notable and impressive strides in the right direction.
Trey Ball, RHP, Boston Red Sox (High-A Salem): 6 IP, ER, 4 H, 2 BB, 7 K, HRA. See, Red Sox fans? There was some good news yesterday! After enough tinkering to prick a gonfalon bubble, Ball has gradually started to produce more consistent flashes of the stuff Boston envisioned him developing back in the day.
Ryan McBroom, 1B, Toronto Blue Jays (High-A Dunedin): 3-6, 2 R, HR, 5 RBI, K. McBroom’s old for the level, and it’s unlikely there’s anything more than an end-of-the-bench bat here, but he’s got solid pop and may just creep up into fulfilling that role for a spell before the journey ends.
Luis Lugo, LHP, Cleveland Indians (High-A Lynchburg): 6 IP, 3 H, 5 K. Lugo is about as prototypical a “back-end starter” projection as you’ll find in A-ball, and there are a lot of those. He’s got a massive, durable frame, he’ll touch 90 from the left side, and he’ll back it up with three average-ish secondaries. The command is fringy, but, well, that’s why we’re talking about back-end potential instead of something more.
Trevor Clifton, RHP, Chicago Cubs (High-A Myrtle Beach): 6 IP, R (0 ER), 3 H, 2 BB, 5 K. Credit the Cubs, who saw enough projection in Clifton to throw a few hundred grand at him out of high school back in 2013. He’s filled out his frame and then some in the years since, and has been pairing a plus fastball with a solid bender and improving change to push his way into the mix of Chicago’s better pitching prospects.
Luis Alexander Basabe, CF, Boston Red Sox (Low-A Greenville): 2-4, BB, R, 2 SB. Basabe has cooled off a bit after a scorching July, and it’s been an up-and-down season overall for the young centerfielder. But he’s managed to hold his own in the Sally with potent power-and-speed production despite playing most of the year as one of the youngest guys at the level. The talent is real and quite possibly spectacular.
Cal Quantrill, RHP, San Diego Padres (Short-Season Tri-City): 4.2 IP, 2 H, 8 K. That’s two straight scoreless outings for Quantrill since his promotion to the Northwest League, and they loosened the reins a bit to 60 pitches for this outing.