Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Minor League Roundup – August 20th

The Good
Drew Hutchison – Buffalo (Triple A)
4.1 IP – 5 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 5 K
After doing fairly poorly in his first two rehab starts in AAA, Hutchison bounced back quite nicely in his 3rd time around.  He managed as many strikeouts on Tuesday as he had in the previous two starts.  Considering he just had his Tommy John surgery on the 8th of August in 2012, he is well ahead of schedule.  I’m expecting to see Hutchison during some point in the month of September.

Daniel Norris – Lansing (Low Single A)
6 IP – 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 HBP
Daniel Norris is on fire in August.  In 20 innings he has thrown in the month, he’s given up just 1 run (good for a 0.45 ERA), and also has posted an impressive 33.3% K rate, and a 9.3 BB% rate.  While that run is very impressive its debatably not even his best stretch of the season.  From July 13th to July 29th he posted a 1.12 ERA, and a 41.8% K rate, and a 16.4% BB rate.  Norris still struggles to put his mechanics together on a consistent basis, so he isn’t the most reliable starter.  However, seeing that he can be utterly dominant for stretches is a huge positive for a player who’s just 20 years old playing in the Mid-west League.

Dalton Pompey – Lansing (Low Single A)
1/2 – 2 BB, 1 SB
After racing through 3 levels of the minor leagues last season, Pompey, the 16th round pick in 2010 out of Mississauga has settled in and posted a very strong season in Lansing.  The speedy centerfielder is not only in the top 5 in the MWL in steals, but he’s also in the top 15 in walks.  He showed off both those skills on Tuesday drawing two walks, and also stealing his 36th base on the season.  Considering that he was drafted so late, he’s bloomed into a fairly promising prospect.

Alberto Tirado – Bluefield (High Rookie)
5 IP – 5 H, 2 R (1 Earned), 1 BB, 6 K, 1 HR
The 18 year old Tirado gave up his first career home run in his 25th career appearance on Tuesday night.  That would be impressive for any pitcher, but considering that Tirado is the youngest pitcher in the entire Appalachian league it really jumps off the page.  Even in the start where he gave up that magic 1st home run, he still managed to increase his K rate, and lower his BB rate.  The Bluefield pitching staff is stacked with high upside arms, but no one is a better prospect than Tirado.

The Bad
Jairo Labourt – Bluefield (High Rookie)
4 IP – 5 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 4 K, 2 HR
While Tirado had another terrific appearance, his rotation mate Labourt had a bit of a downer, posting maybe the worst start of his season.  Considering that he gave up two home runs (after coming into the game with just one on the season), and also that Tirado gave up his first I’d have to think that the wind was blowing out of Bowen Field on Tuesday.  Even after giving up the 3 runs, his ERA still looks great at 1.72, and he’ll be one of the key cogs in Bluefield’s run to the Appalachian League title.

DJ Davis – Bluefield (High Rookie)
0/4 – 2 K, 1 Error
The speedy 1st round pick from 2012 snapped an 8 game hitting streak, by striking out twice.  In the game he also committed his 5th error of the year.  Considering how raw he was when he was drafted you can’t be disappointed by how his season has gone thus far. 

Jake Brentz – GCL (Low Rookie)
1 IP – 2 H, 4 R, 2 BB, 0 K, 2 HR

One game its up, next day its down.  That’s likely how things will go for a prospect as raw as Jake Brentz.  In his last start he didn’t walk anyone for the first time as a professional.  This time he walked 2 and didn’t strike anyone out.  Much like Matt Smoral who was on the mound yesterday, its going to be frustrating to watch him go down his development path.  

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