Putting it all together
Pedro Alvarez, 3B, Pirates (Double-A Altoona)
Thursday’s stats: 2-for-4, 2 RBI, 2 K
Alvarez didn’t hit for power on Wednesday night, but the point is, he’s really starting to swing the bat, and is currently in the hottest streak of his pro career. He’s now hitting .354/.386/.569 in 17 July games, and even the defense has improved. He has made just one miscue in his last 20 contests. He’ll be fine.
Speaking of heating up . . .
Michael Stanton, OF, Marlins (Double-A Jacksonville)
Thursday’s stats: 2-for-4, HR (8), 2 R, 2 RBI, K
After dominating the Florida State League during the first half of the year, it’s understandable that Stanton struggled a bit after moving up to the Southern League, as putting a 19-year-old in Double-A is a tall order. Sure enough, adjustments have been made, and he’s now hitting .302/.384/.619 in July. He’s one of, if not the best, offensive prospect in baseball, and the definition of untouchable if the Marlins look to make a trade before the deadline.
The kind of line that requires a double-take
Deolis Guerra, RHP, Twins (Double-A New Britain)
Thursday’s stats: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 12 K
Once a high-ceiling arm in the Mets system, Guerra was one of the keys to the deal that netted Johan Santana, but everything fell apart for him last year. He had a 5.47 ERA at High-A with as many walks as strikeouts, while his velocity dipped to the mid-80s. The Twins have completely revamped his mechanincs this year, and while it has been slow going, he’s now back into the 89-93 range, throwing more strikes than ever, and still featuring his signature changeup. Just 20 years old, 6-foot-5 and still projectable, he’s a prospect again.
Seriously folks, I think he just might be some kind of prospect again
Andy Marte, 3B, Indians (Triple-A Columbus)
Thursday’s stats: 4-for-4, 2 HR (17), 2 R, 4 RBI
Sure he is a bit of a washout as a former top prospect gone bad, but at 25, he’s not exactly old, and he’s also the hottest hitter in the minors. With last night’s barrage, he’s now hitting .406/.457/.922 in July and .329/.367/.591 overall. If you’re the Indians and you’re going nowhere this year, you might as well give him a look to see if there’s something here.
Getting the spotlight, and keeping it
Tyson Gillies, OF, Mariners (High-A High Desert)
Thursday’s stats: 2-for-4, 2 R; 3-for-4, R, SB
Gillies speed, which rates as a pure 80 on the 20-to-80 scouting scale, made him the talk of the Futures Game earlier in the month, and since returning to the California League, he has continued to put on a show, going 12-for-21 in his last five games with eight runs scored. With speed, defense and a line drive bat, a good showing next year in Double-A could get him to the big leagues quickly.
Darrell Ceciliani, OF, Mets (Rookie-Level Kingsport)
Thursday’s stats: 4-for-5, 2 R, RBI, K, CS
A fourth-round pick this year out of a small community college in Washington, Ceciliani is an excellent athlete with plus speed and gap power. He needs less time adjusting to pro ball, as his college team played with wood bats. He just turned 19 last month, is 14-for-30 in his last seven games and .301/.393/.452 overall in 20 pro games, and scouts are taking notice.
Thursday’s box score reports