MLB Prospects: 5 Hitters from Each Minor League Level off to a Hot Start

Mike Rosenbaum@GoldenSombreroMLB Prospects Lead WriterApril 16, 2012

#FreeMikeTrout
#FreeMikeTroutOtto Greule Jr/Getty Images

All across the minor leagues, there have been hitters getting off to a blistering start. While some have been expected—such as Mike Trout, who’s been held in Triple-A against his will—others, like the Mariners' Jack Marder and Brad Miller, have been a surprise.

So, I thought it would be interesting to take a look at some of the top hitters from each active minor-league level:

Triple-A 

Matt Adams, 1B, Cardinals: .381/.422/.690, 42 AB, 4 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 10/3 K/BB

Continues to rake; could get called up before the All-Star break.

Anthony Rizzo, 1B, Cubs: .381/.409/.857, 42 AB, 5 HR, 12 RBI, 7/2 K/BB

Notched his second multi-homer game of the season on Friday; still blocked by Bryan LaHair.

Brian Dozier, 2B, Twins: .395/.465/.579, 38 AB, 4 2B, HR, 4 RBI, 6/5 K/BB

Nearly made the team out of spring training and will make his debut in 2012.

Mike Trout, OF, Angels: .435/.491.652, 2B, 3 3B, HR, 30 TB, 4 SB, 10/6 K/BB

#FreeMikeTrout—that is all.

Leonys Martin, OF, Rangers: .375/.444/.563, 18 H, 3 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 7/6 K/BB. 3-for-6 SB

Patiently waiting his turn to crack to the Rangers starting lineup.

Double-A

Matt Davidson, 3B, Diamondbacks: .444/.556/.583, 36 AB, 5 2B, 4 RBI, 8/6 K/BB

After a solid spring training, Davidson is showing a consistent approach at the plate.

Kolten Wong, 2B, Cardinals: .424/.500/.697, 33 AB, 2 2B, 2 3B, HR, 7 RBI, 5/3 K/BB

Wong continues to hit and could conceivably be the Cardinals second baseman toward the end of the season.

Aaron Hicks, OF, Twins: .297/.349/.649, 37 AB, 2 2B, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 2 SB, 10/4 K/BB

Switch-hitter off to a good start in a much-needed rebound season.

Nolan Arenado, 3B, Rockies: .395/.477/.632, 38 AB, 6 2B, HR, 8 RBI, 6/3 K/BB

Arenado continues to rake; launched his first home run on Sunday.

Austin Wates, OF, Astors: .400/.455/.550, 40 AB, 4 2B, 3B, 7 RBI, 5/4 K/BB

In first nine games, Wates already has five multi-hit efforts.

High-A

Billy Hamilton, SS, Reds: .382/.500/.676, 3 2B, 2 3B, HR, 6 RBI, 6/7 K/BB, 9 SB

Speedy switch-hitter has been driving the ball and swiping bags.

Nick Castellanos, 3B, Tigers: .410/.442/.564, 39 AB, 3 2B, HR, 7 RBI, 10/3 K/BB

Has hit safely in all 10 games to start the season.

Jack Marder, C, Mariners: .413/.471/.609, 46 AB, 6 2B, HR, 11 RBI, 6/4 K/BB, 5-for-8 SB

The catcher’s making a quick name for himself with power-speed combo.

Brad Miller, SS, Mariners: .372/.471/.837, 43 AB, 15 R, 4 2B, 2 3B, 4 HR, 11 RBI, 12/8 K/BB, 2 SB

Ten of his 16 hits have gone for extra bases; leads league in total bases.

Evan Gattis, C, Phillies: .469/.525/.844, 3 2B, 3 HR, 14 RBI, 3/4 K/BB

6’4”, 230-pounder is now 25 and experiencing High-A for the first time, and leading the entire level with a 1.369 OPS.

Single-A

Tyler Austin, OF, Yankees: .438/.471/1.031, 4 2B, 3 3B, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 6/2 K/BB

Ten of Austin’s 14 hits have gone for extra bases.

Jorge Bonifacio, OF, Royals: .410/.511/.590, 4 2B, HR, 7 RBI, 6/7 K/BB

Younger brother of Emilio is a much different type of player.

Alen Hanson, 2B, Pirates: .404/.451/.809, 15 R, 19 H, 5 2B, 4 HR, 9 RBI, 4 SB, 11/4 K/BB

Second baseman is leading the Sally with a 38 total bases.

Kaleb Cowart, 3B, Angels: .359/.419/.564, 3 2B, 3B, HR, 9 RBI, 3 SB, 8/3 K/BB

Is the 2009 first-rounder’s power beginning to take form?

Josh Adams, SS, Marlins: .350/.422/.725, 3 2B, 4 HR, 9 RBI, 5/4 K/BB

After a hot start, the shortstop has cooled down over his last few games.

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