Prospect of the Day:
Ismael Guillon, LHP, Reds (High-A Daytona): 6 IP, 2 H, 0 R/ER, BB, 9 K
Guillon has seemingly been around forever, and after missing the 2015 season following surgery, many believed his prospect stock may be finished. He remains maddeningly inconsistent thanks to below-average control, but Guillon’s low-90s fastball and 70-grade changeup continue to make him an enticing left-hander. There’s reason to be skeptical of a 24-year-old pitcher that has yet to advance past High-A and owns a career walk rate approaching five per nine innings, but there’s also reason to hold out hope that he figures it out enough to contribute in the big leagues.
Others of Note:
Sean Newcomb, LHP, Braves (Double-A Mississippi): 6 IP, 2 H, 0 R/ER, 3 BB, 8 K. There’s little doubting Newcomb’s raw ability. Even without perfect control and command, Newcomb can dominate minor-league hitters. If he can find the zone more consistently in 2017, he should be in Atlanta quickly.
Magneuris Sierra, OF, Cardinals (Low-A Peoria): 3-4, 2 R, 2B, SB. Sierra’s second crack at the Low-A Midwest League has gone substantially better, including consistent hard contact that has resulted in an improved average and gap power to back up his electric speed and defensive profile.
Oscar De La Cruz, RHP, Cubs (Low-A South Bend): 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER, BB, 6 K. In three Low-A starts, De La Cruz has allowed just five hits in 14 2/3 innings while fanning 22 hitters. Still just 21 years old, De La Cruz is a physical beast with potential to continue growing, meaning his already high-octane arsenal could continue stepping forward.
Nellie Rodriguez, 1B, Indians (Double-A Akron): 2-3, R, HR, BB. I’m well aware of the flaws in Rodriguez’s game, as well as the subsequent challenges he will have becoming a big-league regular, but damn if I don’t enjoy watching him swing out of his shoes and drive the ball out of the park.
Justin Dunn, RHP, Mets (Short-Season Brooklyn): 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER, 3 BB, 6 K. My personal experience scouting Dunn leaves me confident in his ability to be a starter long term. His command will have to continue improving and he will have to prove he can handle the innings it will take to start in the big leagues, but he can be absolutely filthy when he’s on his game.
Jairo Beras, OF, Rangers (High-A High Desert): 2-4, 2 R, 2B, 3B, K. Though he still has tremendous raw power, Beras requires patience and may still need to repeat High-A before taking two to three years to figure out how to hit upper-level arms. There’s a dream of a middle-of-the-order slugger here, and I’m just crazy enough to wait it out and see if that dream comes true.
Jake Bauers, 1B, Rays (Double-A Montgomery): 3-3, 4 R, 2 2B, HR, 2 BB. Bauers has shifted back to playing first base almost exclusively over the last month, which may ultimately hurt his prospect stock some, but he’s still a quality hitter with a good approach. If he can learn to lift the ball more and drive it out of the park as is expected of first basemen, he could be a fine piece in Tampa.
Rafael Devers, 3B, Red Sox (High-A Salem): 2-4, 2 R, 2 HR, K. Devers is 19 years old. He’s 19 years old in High-A, and after an adjustment period early in the season, he has been sensational of late.
Luis Alexander Basabe, OF, Red Sox (Low-A Greenville): 3-5, R, 2B. Basabe was electric last month, and though it is impossible to sustain that performance, he has continued to flash his all-around tools in August. His development will take a while because he remains raw, but Basabe may be the next exciting Red Sox prospect.
Josh Rogers, LHP, Yankees (High-A Tampa): 6 IP, 5 H, 0 R/ER, BB, 8 K. An 11th-round pick of the Yankees, Rogers typically mixes three pitches and pounds the strike zone to work through opposing lineups. He doesn’t have a huge ceiling, but Rogers could be a big leaguer at the back of the rotation.
Joel Payamps, RHP, Diamondbacks (High-A Visalia): 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R/ER, BB, 8 K. Released by the Rockies in 2015, Payamps has emerged as a legitimate prospect this season with the D’Backs, pumping fastballs that reach 95 mph and mixing two fringy secondary pitches. His future is likely in the bullpen, but at just 22 years old and with the leap forward he has taken this season, the Diamondbacks will likely be thrilled with that outcome after peeling him off the scrap heap.
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