Prospect of the Day:

Jose Berrios, RHP, Minnesota Twins (Triple-A Rochester): 8 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 14 K
I believe that Berrios no longer technically qualifies as a prospect. For him and a line this good, we’ll make an exception. Yes, he’s struggled tremendously at the big-league level. It’s been terribly frustrating to see him struggle to locate anything while pitching in Minnesota. This is still one of the most talented young right-handers in baseball, however, and games like this help illustrate that fact. He’ll be fine. I think.

Others of Note:

Lewis Brinson, OF, Milwaukee Brewers (Triple-A Colorado Springs): 3-for-4, 2 R, 2 2B, K. In the friendly confines of Colorado Springs, Brinson came into the day hitting .397/.403/.662 since the trade. The only complaint would be the lack of walks, but stop complaining.

Robert Stephenson, RHP, Cincinnati Reds (Triple-A Louisville): 7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 7 K. Even though Stephenson has been passed by several prospects in the Reds system, he still has a chance to be a big-time contributor. I just wonder if it makes more sense for those contributions to come from the bullpen rather than every fifth day.

Casey Gillaspie, 1B, Tampa Bay Rays (Triple-A Durham): 3-for-4, R, HR. Gillaspie doesn’t have elite power, but there’s certainly enough there to handle first base, and his approach at the plate is exceptional.

Ian Happ, 2B, Chicago Cubs (Double-A Tennessee): 2-for-5, R, 2 2B, K. I was surprised to see that Happ only has a .716 OPS since his promotion to Double-A. It seems like every time I look at the box scores he’s having a game like this. Selection bias or something.

Erick Fedde, RHP, Washington Nationals (Double-A Harrisburg): 6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 12 K. After a slow start, Fedde is ending the season on the right foot. I’m sure the Nationals will take that tradeoff.

Jorge Alfaro, C, Philadelphia Phillies (Double-A Reading): 4-for-5, 4 R, 2B, HR. I’ll set the over/under on games Alfaro catches for the Phillies in 2017 at 78.5. What are you taking?

Kyle Tucker, OF, Houston Astros (High-A Lancaster): 3-for-3, R, 2 2B. What’s been really impressive—in an admittedly small sample—is how patient Tucker has been at the plate. In 12 games at Lancaster, he’s drawn seven walks while still hitting for power (four extra-base hits). Not bad for a 19-year-old.

Michael Kopech, RHP, Boston Red Sox (HIgh-A Salem): 0.1 IP, 6 ER, 5 BB, 1 K. Well, they can’t all be winners, folks.

Sandy Alcantara, RHP, St. Louis Cardinals (High-A Palm Beach): 7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 10 K. Assuming Alex Reyes graduates, I think it’s safe to say that Alcantara is now the best pitching prospect in St. Louis. He’s been one of the most pleasant surprises of any hurler in baseball.

Austin Riley, 3B, Atlanta Braves (Low-A Rome): 2-for-3, 3 R, 2B, HR, K. From April 7th to June 19th, Riley hit three homers in 264 plate appearances. From June 23rd on, Riley has 16 homers in the same amount of PAs. Yep. That’ll play.

Anderson Espinoza, RHP, San Diego Padres (Low-A Fort Wayne): 4 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB 6 K. When you consider the age and lack of experience, the stats really are secondary to several other parts of his development. That being said, it’s nice to see Espinoza pitch well.

Mike Soroka, RHP, Braves (Low-A Rome): 7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K. This guy would be the best pitching prospect for several clubs. In the Braves organization, he might be fourth.

Will Craig, 3B, Pittsburgh Pirates (Short-Season West Virginia): 3-for-4, R. It’s no surprise Craig has hit well as a professional; he was one of the most advanced bats from the 2016 class. The question is where he’s gonna play. The Pirates have a while to answer that.

Gavin Lux, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers (Short-Season AZL): 3-for-4, SB. It was recently announced that Lux will finish the year in Ogden. This is the most exciting thing to happen in Ogden since… I got nothing.

Brandon Miller, RHP, Mariners (Short-Season Everett): 5 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K. A Northwest League scout recently told me that Miller was the “most likely big-leaguer” of any pitcher he saw in the NWL this summer. That’s pretty high praise for a kid who was pitching at a college I was unaware existed earlier this year (MIllersville).

Thank you for reading

This is a free article. If you enjoyed it, consider subscribing to Baseball Prospectus. Subscriptions support ongoing public baseball research and analysis in an increasingly proprietary environment.

Subscribe now
You need to be logged in to comment. Login or Subscribe
Between the up-and-down from AAA to the Majors, which player do you think could have his make-up negatively affected or his potential damaged by the yo-yoing by the Twins: Jose Berrios or Byron Buxton?

I feel like either of these players would be much better with a change of scenery.
I'd be interested in an article on this general subject. The idea that a guy has nothing left to prove in the minors seems to be the dominant one when we're talking about marquee prospects. Thus, teams like the Twins come in for a lot of criticism when they call up and send down players like Berrios or Buxton.

So, what explains the decision of Twins management to do the "yo-yo" thing anyway? Is it really pure ineptitude? I have to think that other factors are at play.

There's the obvious struggles of the players themselves, for one. Could it be that they're better off sorting things out in the minors, and have more confidence to lose in the majors than to gain just by "toughing it out"?

Then there are the other players fighting for a chance. A guy like Alex Wimmers is probably never going to be a mainstay on a championship team. But does the organization have an interest to see that guys like Wimmers be shown that they'll be given a fair shake if they put in their time? Is it too sentimental to say that motivating the "org guys" by showing that they have a legitimate chance at a call-up has to feature into management's thinking to some degree? These aren't impact players, but they're worth something, right? Maybe Wimmers won't be on the next Twins World Series team, but maybe he can do better for the Twins' major-league club than Berrios can at this moment. What's that worth to an organization, and what does his promotion signal to other members of the club?
Alfaro: I'll take the under.
Ronald Acuna went 3/5 with a HR last night/