Prospect(s) of the Weekend:
Justus Sheffield, LHP and Taylor Widener, RHP, Yankees (Double-A, Trenton): 9 IP, 0 H, 0 R/ER, 2 BB, 10 K.
A playoff no-no is almost always going to get the nod for the top spot in the weekend MLU. Sheffield is the legitimate prospect of the duo, offering mid-rotation potential at the highest level, but Widener is no slouch in his own right. Finally healthy following some issues at the tail end of his collegiate career, Widener was promoted to Double-A for the playoff run, and he’s showing the plus fastball and above-average slider that should make him a useful reliever. [ed. note: it should be mentioned that the no-no was courtesy a very belated scoring change that converted a hit to an error on Dante Bichette, Jr.]
Friday, September 8th
Miguel Andujar, 3B, Yankees (Triple-A, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre): 3-5, 2 2B, RBI.
Andujar received a one-game taste at the big league level earlier this year and he’s done nothing but rake in the minor leagues this season; continuing that trend in the playoffs with a strong Friday game.
Mark Appel, RHP, Phillies (Triple-A, Lehigh Valley): 1 IP, 3 BB.
Oh, how the mighty have fallen.
Tyler O’Neill, OF, Cardinals (Triple-A, Memphis): 3-6, R, 2 2B, 4 RBI.
Traded to the Cardinals earlier this summer, O’Neill has continued to hit with his new organization. There are reasons to be skeptical of his impact potential at the big-league level, but O’Neill has always hit in the minor leagues and should carve out a role as a solid major league bat.
Fernando Tatis, Jr., SS, Padres (Double-A, San Antonio): 3-4, R, RBI.
Oh, no big deal, just an 18-year old with a three-hit night in the playoffs. Move along, folks.
Skye Bolt, OF, Athletics (High-A, Stockton): 2-3, R, HR, 2 RBI, BB.
Bolt’s swing-and-miss issues have continued to plague him throughout his minor league career, including 134 whiffs in 114 games this season in High-A. A gifted athlete, there is always the hope that things suddenly click for Bolt, but I wouldn’t count on that happening.
Triston McKenzie, RHP, Indians (High-A, Lynchburg): 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R/ER, 2 BB, 10 K.
I didn’t get a chance to see McKenzie in person this season, but I have talked to plenty of people that did, and it sounds like the hype is real. I’m looking forward to my chance to see McKenzie in the Eastern League next summer; one of my priority targets in 2018.
Matt Manning, RHP, Tigers (Low-A, West Michigan): 5 IP, 4 H, R/ER, 2 BB, 10 K.
Unlike McKenzie, I did get a chance to see Manning in person on three different occasions this season. At no point in those three outings did he consistently show the type of stuff scouts noted Friday night. Manning sat 91-94 mph with leverage and sink, and his breaking ball showed promise as well. There’s a lot of work to be done, but Manning has made small strides this summer.
Jesus Bastidas, SS, Yankees (Rookie, Pulaski): 2-5, 2 R, 2B, HR, RBI, K.
Signed for $300,000 in 2015, Bastidas shows the instincts, footwork, and hands to stick at shortstop long term, which is good because his bat has minimal potential. An undersized player, Bastidas lacks strength and doesn’t project to hit for average or power as he moves up the minor league ladder.
Rylan Bannon, 3B, Dodgers (Rookie, Ogden): 3-5, R, 2 2B.
Bannon was the Dodgers eighth-round pick in June and he torched the Pioneer League to the tune of a .336/.425/.591 line as an experienced college hitter in a low-level rookie league. Bannon is a solid hitter that has fringe power. His glove is the calling card here, projecting to a near plus level as he settles into pro ball.
Saturday, September 9th
Fernando Tatis, Jr., SS, Padres (Double-A, San Antonio): 2-5, R, 2B, K.
A three-hit night Friday, then two more hits and a double on Saturday. How exactly is this kid just 18-years old?
Jorge Mateo, SS, Athletics (Double-A, Midland): 3-5, 2 R, 2B, 3 RBI, 2 SB.
This is what you like to see from Mateo, multiple hits, a couple of runs scored, an extra-base hit, and two stolen bases; in other words, all of his tools on display in one game.
Yonathan Daza, OF, Rockies (High-A, Lancaster): 4-6, 2 R, 3B, 4 RBI, K.
A bit of an unknown prospect, Daza has made a name for himself with a strong showing in High-A this season. BP’s Wilson Karaman has been impressed and offered some notes on him earlier this season. We also just so happened to feature him in today’s Ten Pack.
Sunday, September 10th
Tyler O’Neill, OF, Cardinals (Triple-A, Memphis): 3-5, 3 R, 2B, HR, 3 RBI.
More hits, including two extra-base knocks from O’Neill. He should arrive in St. Louis next summer, and given the Cardinals track record of routinely coaxing a little more than expected of players, who knows what we should expect.