Hitter of the Day:
Max Moroff, 2B, Pittsburgh Pirates (Triple-A, Indianapolis): 2-3, 2 R, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 BB, K
There were a lot of two-homer performances Wednesday, but Moroff is tied for the minor-league lead now with Chris DeVito (more on him below) with 12. While power hasn’t typically been a big part of his game (his prior career-high was eight) it is showing up in spades more than ever.
Pitcher of the Day:
Zac Gallen, RHP, St. Louis Cardinals (High-A, Palm Beach): 8 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 K
We have noted Gallen’s performances many times so far in the MLU, so I won’t repeat them all again. But I will say perhaps it is time this advanced college arm gets a challenge at Double-A.
Other Notable Performances:
Lachlan Wells, LHP, Minnesota Twins (High-A, Fort Myers): 9 IP, 4 H, R, ER, 2 BB, 4 K
The twin brother of Orioles pitcher Alex Wells, Lachlan has matured like his brother and looks the part of a back-end rotation pitcher. While his arsenal mostly elicits average grades, his changeup has gotten a plus grade from a scout I talked to and he combines it with excellent command.
T.J. Zeuch, RHP, Toronto Blue Jays (High-A, Dunedin): 7 IP, 11 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 6 K
You don’t often see guys with Zeuch’s height (6-foot-7) throw a ton of strikes, but that is what T.J. does. His fastball can be hittable because he is in the zone so much and it doesn’t sink when left up. His curve is his most advanced off-speed offering, showing good depth and above-average potential.
Tyler Beede, RHP, San Francisco Giants (Triple-A, Sacramento): 7 IP, 6 H, 2 R, ER, BB, 4 K
Our top-ranked Giants prospect, Beede comes at you with four major-league pitches, all of them for strikes. His fastball becomes three different pitches as he can cut it, or two-seam it wherever he wants. His curveball is the best off-speed offering as it flashes plus with good depth.
Walker Buehler, RHP, Los Angeles Dodgers (Double-A, Tulsa): 3 2/3 IP, 3 H, 0 R, BB, 9 K
Like with Gallen, Buehler has been mentioned many times thus far in the MLU. I just wish he was with Texas so I can call him “Walker Texas Ranger."
Dakota Chalmers, RHP, Oakland Athletics (Low-A, Beloit): 4 IP, H, 0 R, 4 BB, 5 K
A third rounder back in 2015, Chalmers has a lot going for him. One of the things not going for him is his control, as it can get away from him often. But his fastball/curve combination is good enough at the low-A level to get away with sub par control. At the higher levels? It will need to improve.
Max Schrock, 2B, Oakland Athletics (Double-A, Midland): 3-4, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI, K
A pure hitter, and a favorite of another famous writer of prospects on the internet, Schrock hits, hits, and hits. Unfortunately his defense at second base is so-so, his below-average arm limits his utility, and his lack of power could leave him light in the slugging department. But Tommy La Stella made it work, so why not Schrock?
Eric Wood, 3B, Pittsburgh Pirates (Triple-A, Indianapolis): 2-3, 3 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 2 BB
An old-fashioned utility player, the reason Wood plays everywhere is because he has needed to learn the positions to survive and earn a major-league opportunity. A jack-of-all-trades player, Wood’s power has started to emerge as well, giving him a more ample shot at sticking on a big-league roster.
Conner Capel, OF, Cleveland Indians (Low-A, Lake County): 2-4, 3 R, 2 HR, 2 RBI, BB
Another player with a two-homer outing, Capel shows an intriguing skill set, albeit a raw one. A 70 runner, a plus arm, and a future plus defender in the outfield, he has shown some raw power, but is unlikely to play at more than a 40 in-game. His swing has some length and stiffness to it, but he has bat speed and can make hard contact with the ball.
Chris DeVito, 1B, Kansas City Royals (High-A, Wilmington): 1-4, R, HR, 2 RBI, 2 K
DeVito proved to be too advanced for Low-A, as he hit .347/.374/.702 with 11 homers in 30 games, thus resulting in a promotion to High-A. The power is an easy plus, and he is surprisingly strong defensively, but like with other first base-only prospects, let’s see this work at the upper levels first.
Fight Another Day:
Louisville Bats Pitchers, Cincinnati Reds (Triple-A): 8 IP, 22 H, 16 R, 11 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 4 HRA
To be fair, the wind was blowing out to center field at 18 mph, and they brought up a pitcher from High-A (Wendolyn Bautista) to start the outing. But baseball is going to baseball.
Dylan Cozens, OF, Philadelphia Phillies (Triple-A, Lehigh Valley): 0-6, RBI, 4 K
Even on days where he doesn’t get a hit Cozens still finds a way to produce runs. But four strikeouts are never a good thing.