Hitter of the Day:
Pitcher of the Day:
Triston McKenzie, RHP, Cleveland Indians (High-A Lynchburg): 7 IP, ER, 2 H, BB, 13 K, HRA
You’d think that line makes for an extraordinary start, but it’s the second time in six that McKenzie has punched out at least 13 batters. I realize we’re waiting on the body to develop a bit here, but it may just be time to play that game at Double A sooner than later.
Other Notable Prospects:
Alex Verdugo, OF, Los Angeles Dodgers (Triple-A Oklahoma City): 3-5, 2 R, HR, RBI, SB
Verdugo has been challenged to obscene age-to-level heights, and he’s responded by more or less holding his own at every stop. The swing is pretty sweet, though he’s developed a bit of a platoon split against more advanced stuff.
Jack Flaherty, RHP, St. Louis Cardinals (Triple-A Memphis): 6 IP, 2 H, BB, 8 K
Flaherty hasn’t missed much of a beat since hopping up to the PCL, and at this rate it is not at all outside the realm of possibility we see him up in St. Louis before the summer’s out.
Willy Adames, SS, Tampa Bay Rays (Triple-A Durham): 4-5, RBI
After an up-and-down start to the season, Willy’s hitting close to .400 over his last 10, and doesn’t look altogether far away from a big-league debut.
J.D. Davis, 3B, Houston Astros (Double-A Corpus Christi): 2-5, 2 R, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 2 K
Davis is putting together a kind of sneaky great little season in the Texas League right now, most notable for a strikeout rate south of 25 percent. He’s not going to win many games with his glove, but the power’s real, and as long as he keeps showing an ability to bring it into games he’ll be worth watching.
Luiz Gohara, LHP, Atlanta Braves (Double-A Mississippi): 5 IP, 3 H, 7 K
After a couple abbreviated outings to manage his innings, Gohara spun five beautiful frames yesterday to keep pace with Luis Ortiz (4 IP, H, 2 BB, 3 K). The fastball was missing bats in the zone, and the slider sure looked like it’d rest at plus some day. He’s made a lot of progress in a little time this year.
Nicky Lopez, SS, Kansas City Royals (High-A Wilmington): 2-6, BB, R, 3B, 2 SB, E
This game went 15, and there was Lopez throughout, steady as is his want. A solid shortstop who stays within himself, Lopez boasts an average or better hit tool projection thanks to excellent hands and a sound approach, the latter of which has thus far yielded 28 walks to just 17 whiffs across his first first 250-plus plate appearances at High A.
Nick Neidert, RHP, Seattle Mariners (High-A Modesto): 6.2 IP, 3 ER, 6 H, 11 K, HRA
Neidert continues to tantalize me from afar as my white whale to date of Cal League pitching prospects. The former second-rounder has only yielded more than three earned once in a dozen starts out here, which is pretty alright for this here league. The arsenal has played above expectation thus far, most notably in the bat-missing department, and that’s a great sign for a dude with his command profile.
Jacob Nix, RHP, San Diego Padres (High-A Lake Elsinore): 7 IP, ER, 6 H, 7 K, HRA
The second one that got away from Houston in the 2014 draft, Nix is now just another legit rotation piece in the making in a system chalk full of ‘em. A hanger that a heating-up Yusniel Diaz respectfully deposited over the left field wall marked the only blemish on an otherwise-sterling third start at High-A. I’ll have notes on his fourth start next week.
Sam Hilliard, RF, Colorado Rockies (High-A Lancaster): 3-5, R, 3B, RBI, 2 K
After destroying everything in his path for much of April, ironically during the one bad time of the year to hit at Lancaster, Hilliard has settled into a bit of a scuffle over the past several weeks. There are five tools here. It is unclear how many of them will ever play simultaneously, but it bears watching the hit tool in particular to find out.
Chris Okey, C, Cincinnati Reds (High-A Daytona): 0-6, 4 K
Things haven’t exactly “worked out” for the Reds’ reigning second-rounder thus far, though his carrying tool has always been his makeup, and he’ll need to lean heavily on that to help right the ship after what has charitably been an underwhelming offensive start to his pro career.
Blake Perkins, CF, Washington Nationals (Low-A Hagerstown): 4-7, 2 BB, 2 R, 2B, HR, RBI, SB, K;
Telmito Agustin, LF, Washington Nationals (Low-A Hagerstown): 4-6, BB, 3 R, 2B, 2 HR, 3 RBI, K
The Nats’ Low-A affiliate dropped both ends of a double-header yesterday, but it wasn’t the fault of either of these guys. A second-rounder in 2015, Perkins has shown a pleasantly solid stick to compliment his excellent glove, while Mark Anderson already told you all you need to know about Augustin because of course he did.
Jose Gomez, SS, Colorado Rockies (Low-A Asheville): 5-8, BB, 2 R, 2 2B, HR, 2 RBI, K, 2 CS
Gomez is following up a stateside debut that saw him hit .367 in the Pioneer League with another solid effort in the Asheville bandbox. He’s a small guy with a flat swing plane, but the bat is hella quick to the point of contact, and while his approach has backslid a bit in full-season ball this year he’s got the compact stroke and hand-eye of an above-average hitter. He lacks a standout tool beyond the hit, though he plays fast on the dirt and the glove is versatile around the infield.
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