Here are your 3 fresh and stale prospects for the week.
The Louisville Bats lineup
This is slightly unorthodox, but if any team deserves a spot on the "fresh" list, it's the 2011 Louisville Bats. The team has scored 52 runs in 11 games and have hit the most HR (15) of any team in the league. What's crazy is that Yonder Alonso and Zack Cozart are really struggling. As long as this lineup stays intact, this is going to be a scary team.
The 2B/OFer has gotten off to an excellent start in Carolina. Through Sunday he's hitting an impressive .386/.485/.769. He's doing everything well. Making a lot of contact, hitting for power, and walking. If he keeps this up he's going to force the organization to squeeze him into an already crowded Louisville lineup.
I know it's the Cal League (see below) but this guy has still been very impressive. The book on him so far has been that he makes a lot of contact, hardly ever walks, and has a lot of pop for a middle infielder. The power has yet to manifest itself this season, but everything else is playing to type, and it is working for HankRod. So far through 10 games he has only struck out four times, walked twice, and has a line of .390/.422/.488.
Bakersfield Blaze Pitching Staff
In the interest of balance and equity we are going with another group for our first stale prospect. I mean, I know it's an extreme hitter's league, but come on. Through 10 games they have allowed 76 runs, 116 hits, and 12 homers. (all worst in the league). There are no great pitching prospects on this squad, and with a run environment like this, don't be surprised to see some top guys skip this level entirely.
Coming into the year, Robles was supposed to be the anchor of the Dragons rotation. He was very good last year in Billings and his first start this year went well enough, but on Thursday he gave up 5 ER and only got one batter out before being pulled. After the game he was demoted back to Billings. We at FO just hope he's not hurt.
I hate to do this to the young fella, but he's struggling right now. His line so far is .158/.220/.316. If you want a silver lining, at least he's walking. He already has 3 after walking only 8 times all last season.
Find a recap of all the weekend action after the jump.
- Louisville won 3-0 on Friday behind a solid starting pitching effort and well-rounded team hitting. Dontrelle Willis threw 6 shutout innings, striking out 6 and walking 2. He also went 1-2 at the plate. Todd Frazier and Jeremy Hermida were both 2-4 with doubles, and Chris Valaika hit his 1st homer of the season. Saturday the bats failed the Bats and they lost 7-1. Johnny Cueto was pretty strong in his first rehab start, lasting 3.1 innings (limited to 55 pitches) and giving up 1 ER while striking out 4. Jeremy Horst supported him with 3.2 shutout innings of relief, but Joseph Krebs did his best to Cycle his was back to AA by giving up 4 runs in 1 inning of work. The bats only managed 5 hits. Devin Mesoraco had the team's only XBH (2B) and he walked. Sunday the team pushed its record to 9-2, winning a thriller in 13 innings, 6-4. Brian Barton had the game winning, 2 run walkoff home run in the bottom of the 13th. Kris Negron was 3-5 with a double and a walk.
- Carolina was rained out on Friday, so they doubled up on Saturday....and lost both games. Game 1 featured good offense and bad pitching as they lost 8-6. The offensive star in this one was Cody Puckett who homered twice and walked, driving in 5 runs. Jose Arredondo allowed 1 run in 1.2 innings on his rehab assignment. Game 2 featured better pitching but weak offense as they lost 3-2. Jake Kahaulelio had 2 hits in a shortened, 7 inning game. Sunday the team lost 4-3. Felix Perez, Jake Kahaulelio, and Jose Castro each had 2 hits. Donnie Joseph and Brad Boxberger each threw a shutout inning, each striking out 2.
- Bakersfield won 9-2 on Friday. Every starting position player but one had at least one hit. Yasmani Grandal walked twice and hit his first homer of the year. JC Sulbaran was decent in his start, but was supported with 4.2 shutout innings from Clayton Shunick, Mace Thurman, and Doug Salinas. Looking for a reason to discount most Cal League stats? How about the game the Blaze played on Saturday, in which they lost 24-19 in nine innings. That's right, no extras. The two teams combined for 49 hits, 16 walks, and 7 errors. The game was played with no delays and still lasted 4 hours and 55 minutes. So much offense in this one, I'll just point out the standout star. Andrew Means went 5-7 with a homer and a double.
- Dayton lost on Friday 8-6. Daniel Tuttle had a rough start, giving up 6 runs in 3.2 innings. Billy Hamilton went 2-3 with 2 walks and stole his 9th base of the year, and David Vidal went 3-4 with a double. Saturday they too were rained out, so they doubled up on Sunday. They lost the first game 8-4. Jefry Sierra had 3 hits. They took the second game, 9-8. Billy Hamilton stole 2 more bases to bring his season total to 11. Donald Lutz hit his 3rd HR of the year, and Josh Smith gave up just 1 ER in 5 solid innings.