Hitter of the Day:
Nick Senzel, 3B, Cincinnati Reds (Double-A Pensacola): 3-4, BB, 3 R, 2 HR, 4 RBI, SB, K
Senzel has done pretty much exactly what scouts predicted he’d do at every stage of his development thus far. He’s a really good hitter, and the pop has really started to translate from the doubles kind to the over-the-fence kind since he elevated beyond the Florida State League.
Pitcher of the Day:
Nick Kingham, RHP, Pittsburgh Pirates (Triple-A Indianapolis): 9 IP, ER, 2 H, 8 K, HRA
He needed just 85 pitches to complete this one, yielding nothing but an infield hit until Brandon Snyder got him for a solo shot in the seventh. His hallmark command of three average-or-better pitches appears to have remained intact through Tommy John rehab, and while he doesn’t possess the sexiest upside in Pittsburgh’s system, he’s real close to big-league ready, and should fill out many a rotation over the years to come.
Other Prospects of Note:
Rowdy Tellez, 1B, Toronto Blue Jays (Triple-A Buffalo): 3-3, 2 BB, 2B, 3 RBI
It’s been a really rough season for Tellez at the dish, but he’s been crushing the ball of late during a nine-game hit streak. It’s not an overwhelming projection with the bat, but it’s good enough that nobody should’ve abandoned ship after some struggles as a young 22-year-old in Triple A.
Jen-Ho Tseng, RHP, Chicago Cubs (Triple-A Iowa): 7 IP, ER, 8 H, BB, 5 K, HRA
Now that the Cubs’ cupboard is bare, Tseng may have a case to sneak into the back of the organization’s top ten at this point. His heater has ticked up into the low-90s this year, but it remains on the fringy side thanks to a lack of movement and finish. There’s a quality cambio to offset it, but scouts remain concerned that it won’t matter much if he can’t establish the fastball in his starts.
Phil Ervin, OF, Cincinnati Reds (Triple-A Louisville): 3-4, R, 2B, 3B, SB, K
Ervin’s 25 already, and has the look of a Quad-A tweener. But there are enough tools kicking around the box that young can still squint and see some productive seasons in a semi-regular role if opportunity presents itself.
Eric Skoglund, LHP, Kansas City Royals (Triple-A Omaha): 7 IP, 2 R, 4 H, BB, 9 K, HRA
I’d drop a requisite The Island of the Skog reference here, but I fear it’d only be me and a handful of grizzled parents who’d appreciate it, and that window’s tighter than Skoglund’s curveball last night. He’s a lanky lefty, and sometimes those guys can take a hot minute to grow into their bodies. He survived his first sip of big-league coffee in April and May, and should get another crack at it before too long.
Osvaldo Abreu, SS, Washington Nationals (Double-A Harrisburg): 4-4, BB, CS
Abreu’s ticket to the majors is his glove, which is strong enough for the six and versatile enough to plug in anywhere with strong defensive results. That’s good, because his above-average speed has never translated into base-stealing acumen, and the stick is well light to project an everyday role.
Kolby Allard, LHP, Atlanta Braves (Double-A Mississippi): 6 IP, 2 R (ER), 5 H, 2 BB, 10 K
The second-best southpaw on our mid-season list, Allard has held his own their season after aggressively skipping High A. Plus fast- and curveballs from the left side are fun.
Yordan Alvarez, 1B, Houston Astros (High-A Buies Creek): 4-5, R, 2B, SB
The Dodgers shipped the young Cuban to Houston in a deadline deal for Josh Fields last July, and all he did in the intervening year was thoroughly rake. High-A pitching has caused a bit of a pause in the production, but he’s heating up to the tune of an 11-for-22 stretch over his last five. There’s big-time power here, a pretty good, demonstrated ability to get to it thus far, and some sneaky speed and athleticism for good measure. It’s an intriguing package, to be sure.
Jeren Kendall, CF, Los Angeles Dodgers (Low-A Great Lakes): 4-5, 2 R, 3B, 2 RBI, E
Concerns about Kendall’s hit tool led to him “sliding” to the Dodgers at 23, but the full package of tools is awfully impressive. His early scuffles in the Midwest League certainly haven’t done anything to quell the question marks, but the physicality and fluid stroke of a fundamentally sound hitter are present. The secondary skills are such that even a fringy hit tool should be enough for him to impact big-league games down the line.
Spencer Howard, RHP, Philadelphia Phillies (Short-Season Williamsport): 4 IP, 2 BB, 7 K
Philadelphia grabbed Howard with an under-slot deal in the second round in June, and they’ve held down the former-reliever-turned-starter’s innings since he signed. His four-pitch mix wanders around the average range, and he’s got the frame to support a starter’s workload.
Royce Lewis, SS, Minnesota Twins (Rookie GCL Twins): 0-4, BB, R, 3 SB
Lewis’ speed has been a game-changer during his professional debut, and yesterday’s free pass gives him more of those than whiffs thus far in his early career.
Heliot Ramos, OF, San Fransisco Giants (Rookie AZL Giants): 2-5, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI, 2 K, E
One of the youngest players in this draft class, Ramos has already impressed with his combination of present hitting skill and physical projection. The raw ingredients of a big-time prospect are present here, highlighted by plus bat speed and a precocious feel for the barrel.
Mark Vientos, 3B, New York Mets (Rookie GCL Mets): 1-5, R, HR, 2 RBI, K, E
Javier had a full write-up in a recent Ten Pack. Basically you should just be following Javier for all of your Mets rookie affiliate needs.
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