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Scouting Reports and Predictions for MLB Teams' Top September Call-Ups

Mike RosenbaumMLB Prospects Lead WriterSeptember 1, 2012

Scouting Reports and Predictions for MLB Teams' Top September Call-Ups

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    On Saturday, Sept. 1, major league rosters expanded from 25 to 40 active players, allowing teams to adjust their rosters to accommodate players on the disabled list as well as promote prospects from their respective minor league systems.

    While Saturday only represents the first wave of September call-ups, there have still been several intriguing prospects recalled, such as SS Jurickson Profar (Rangers), LHP Nick Maronde (Tigers), OF Avisail Garcia (Tigers) and OF Eury Perez (Nationals).

    And it seems as though LHP Tony Cingrani (Reds) and RHP Shelby Miller (Cardinals) will be up sometime this week.

    My breakdown and analysis of those recalled since September 1 is up to date as of 9:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, and there are still some teams who are yet to announce their promotions. If a team is not listed, then their call-ups have not been made public or involve organizational players or non-prospects.

    Be sure to check back for an updated list and scouting reports on all of the notable prospects who’ve been called up thus far.

    Furthermore, once there is a comprehensive list of the call-ups, I will offer predictions on those who may follow over the course of September—and yes, there will be some shockers.

Arizona Diamondbacks

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    C Konrad Schmidt

    Signed in 2007 as a non-drafted free agent, Schmidt, 28, first reached the major leagues with the Diamondbacks in 2010 and appeared in four games. He also played one game this season in late May.

    In his limited big league career, Schmidt is 1-for-12. In six minor league seasons, he’s batted .291/.345/.434 and thrown out 29 percent of base stealers while appearing in 550 games.

     

    OF Tyler Graham

    Also 28 years old, Graham has spent the better part of seven minor league seasons with the San Francisco Giants.

    A 6'0'', 185-pound right-handed hitting outfielder, his best minor league campaign came in 2011 with Triple-A Fresno (Giants) when he batted .273/.337/.338 with 82 runs and 60 stolen bases in 127 games.

    Playing in 26 games for Triple-A Reno this season, Graham was batting .115/.239/.230 before the promotion.

Baltimore Orioles

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    OF Xavier Avery

    Drafted in the second round of the 2008 first-year player draft, this will be Avery’s second stint in the major leagues this season. He is a career .260/.325/.356 hitter with 141 extra-base hits and 139 stolen bases over five minor league seasons.

    A toolsy outfielder with plus speed and the ability to play either right or center field, Avery batted .233/.317/.356 with eight extra-base hits and six stolen bases in 24 games earlier this season.

     

    IF Steve Tolleson

    A 28-year-old utility man, Tolleson first reached the major leagues with the Oakland Athletics in 2010. In May of 2011, he was traded to the San Diego Padres and subsequently granted his release following the conclusion of the season.

    Signed in late November by the Orioles, Tolleson played third base, second base, shortstop and left field this season while batting .185/.232/.323 in 24 games.

    In 49 career games, he’s batted .228/.279/.360.

     

    C Luis Exposito

    Drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 31st round of the 2005 draft, Exposito is a defense-oriented catcher with slightly below-average power.

    In seven minor league seasons—six of which are with the Red Sox—Exposito has batted .268/.324/.418 with 132 doubles, 56 home runs and 305 RBI in 546 games. He owns a career caught-stealing rate of 30 percent.

    The 25-year-old appeared in eight games with the Orioles earlier this season, recording one hit and three walks in 21 plate appearances.

Boston Red Sox

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    IF Ivan De Jesus

    Drafted out of Puerto Rico in the second round of the 2005 draft, it took the 25-year-old five seasons to finally reach the major leagues in 2011. Granted, he did miss basically the entire 2009 season after breaking his leg during spring training.

    Appearing in 17 games in his 2011 cup of coffee with the Dodgers, the right-handed hitter batted .188/.235/.188 with six hits and 11 strikeouts in 32 at-bats. This season, De Jesus batted .273/.324/.364 in 33 at-bats with the Dodgers, therefore earning official rookie status.

    The son of 15-year big-league veteran Ivan De Jesus Sr., he has a simple, line-drive-oriented swing that allows him to spray the ball to all fields. His best attribute is easily his plate discipline, as he’s always demonstrated advanced on-base skills. His speed has deteriorated since the injury, though he was never particularly fast to begin with.

    Capable of playing multiple infield positions, De Jesus’ defensive actions and fringy range profile best at second base. Given his limited upside, it’s hard to see him as anything more than an organizational player or a reserve infielder.

Cincinnati Reds

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    LHP Tony Cingrani (Tuesday)

    Selected in the third round of the 2011 draft, Cingrani served as Rice’s closer before the Reds converted him to a starter.

    With two plus pitches in his fastball and changeup, Cingrani, 23, has dominated as a starter in his first full professional season after working as a closer while at Rice. His breaking ball is still lacking, but he’s become more comfortable throwing it as something more than a “show-me” offering.

    After beginning the season at High-A, Cingrani has pitched his way to the major leagues. Although the Reds lack a left-hander in their starting rotation, it seems as though his immediate value will be as a reliever.

    Between two levels this season, he has posted a 10-4 record with a 1.73 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 10.6 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9. 

     

    SS Didi Gregorius

    So the Reds won’t be calling up Billy Hamilton. But Gregorius could still provide up-the-middle depth as well as a left-handed bat off the bench. 

    Hailing from Amsterdam, the Reds signed the now-22-year-old in 2008, and he’s since ascended their system quickly. Known for his slick fielding, Gregorius has posted a 4.32 range factor per game in five minor league seasons while playing both middle infield positions.

    The left-handed hitter has batted .271/.323/376 in his minor league career, and was batting .265/.324/.393 with 21 doubles, 11 triples and seven home runs this season in 129 games between Double-A and Triple-A.

     

    OF Denis Phipps

    Signed by the Reds as a non-drafted free agent in May of 2004, Phipps offers an intriguing blend of power and speed. In his seven-year minor league career, the 26-year-old has batted .262/.321/.406 with 163 doubles, 24 triples, 71 home runs and 88 stolen bases in 794 career games.

    He’s adept at playing all three outfield positions, though he’s logged most of his innings in center field.

     

    2B/3B Henry Rodriguez

    A 22-year-old signed out of the Venezuela in 2007, Rodriguez didn’t enter full-season levels until 2010 and has since hit his way to the big leagues.

    A switch-hitter capable of playing both second and third base, he’s batted .303/.350/.431 with 123 doubles, 13 triples, 37 home runs and 106 stolen bases in 508 minor league games.

    Prior to his call-up, Rodriguez was batting .282/.310/.370 in 89 games between Double-A and Triple-A.

Cleveland Indians

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    IF/OF Russ Canzler

    Drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 30th round of the 2004 draft, Canzler spent six seasons in the organization before he was signed as a free agent by the Tampa Bay Rays prior to the 2011 season. The Indians inked him as a free agent headed into the 2012 season.

    In nine minor league seasons, the 6’2”, 225-pounder has seen time at first base, third base and in the outfield. He has posted a career minor league batting average of .278/.347/.472 with 208 doubles, 106 home runs and 721 strikeouts in 868 games.

    His only major league experience came last season when he was 1-for-3 in three games with the Rays.

     

    LHP Scott Barnes

    Drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the eighth round of the 2008 draft, Barnes was traded to the Indians at the trade deadline in 2009 for Ryan Garko. The left-hander was on pace for a big league call-up in 2011; however, a torn ACL in July prematurely ended his season.

    Barnes features a three-pitch mix with a decent fastball, above-average slider and changeup and, in general, does a good job locating all three down in the zone. His unusual and deceptive mechanics inspired the Indians to convert him to a full-time reliever this season.

    In 113 career minor league games, Barnes is 33-26 with a 3.88 ERA, 1.223 WHIP, 9.5 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9 in 475 innings.

    He made his big league debut earlier this season, registering an 8.10 ERA with 10 strikeouts and seven walks in 10 innings out of the Tribe’s bullpen.

     

    OF Thomas Neal 

    One time considered a promising prospect in the Giants’ system, Neal reached Triple-A with the organization before joining the Indians halfway through the 2011 season.

    An athletic outfielder, the right-handed hitter owns a career batting average of .299/.376/.464 with 68 home runs and 37 stolen bases in seven minor league seasons.

    Having his contract purchased from Double-A Akron, the 24-year-old was batting .314/.400/.467 with 37 extra-base hits and 11 stolen bases at the time of his promotion.

Chicago Cubs

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    IF Adrian Cardenas

    Drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the first round of the 2006 draft, Cardenas was traded to the A’s in 2008 in exchange for Joe Blanton. In February of 2012, the second baseman was signed off waivers by the Chicago Cubs.

    In his seven-year minor league career, the 24-year-old has batted .302/.369/.417 with 32 home runs and 82 stolen bases.

    Considered a top-100 prospect by Baseball America prior to both the 2008 and 2009 seasons, Cardenas batted .234/.265/.362 with six doubles and 10 strikeouts in 32 games with the Cubs earlier this season.

     

    OF Dave Sappelt

    Drafted in the ninth round of the 2008 draft by the Cincinnati Reds, the Cubs acquired Sappelt this past offseason as part of the deal for Sean Marshall.

    In five minor league seasons, Sappelt has batted .299/.351/.439 with 117 doubles, 33 triples, 38 home runs and 97 stolen bases in 538 games.

    In his only big league exposure with the Reds last season, the right-handed hitter batted .243/.289/.318 with eight doubles and 17 strikeouts in 38 games.

Chicago White Sox

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    RHP Brian Omogrosso

    Drafted by the White Sox in the sixth round of the 2006 draft, the 28-year-old is rejoining the major league club after a brief exposure earlier this season.

    With a career 3.90 ERA, 1.313 WHIP, 8.3 K/9 and 4.1 BB/9 in seven minor league seasons, the right-hander registered a 4.26 ERA with three strikeouts and three walks in 6.1 innings with the White Sox this season.

     

    RHP Deunte Heath

    After six years as a starting pitcher in the minor leagues, 27-year-old right-hander Deunte Heath has more experience than you’d think. He’s only been a full-time reliever since mid-2011 and has registered a 1.48 ERA, 9.9 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 67 innings this season at Triple-A.

Detroit Tigers

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    OF Avisail Garcia

    At 6'4", 240 pounds, Garcia projects to be a corner player with at least above-average power from the right side of the plate. His hit tool remains suspect, however, as he struggles with pitch recognition and often chases off-speed offerings out of the strike zone.

    As the Tigers’ top outfield prospect, Garcia has the tools to handle right field, and he has surprising speed for a player of his size with a plus arm and excellent carry. If he outgrows the position, there’s a chance that he ultimately winds up at first base.

    Due to the fact that he was signed at a young age in 2007, Garcia was already on the 40-man roster. Strikeouts continue to be a problem, with 451 in 523 career minor league games.

    Prior to his promotion, Garcia was batting .299/.333/.455 with 14 home runs and 23 stolen bases in 122 games between High-A Lakeland and Double-A Erie.

    As a right-handed hitter, he could see time as a platoon outfielder with left-handed hitters Brennan Boesch and Andy Dirks.

     

    C Bryan Holaday

    Drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 draft, Holaday will be making his second appearance with the Tigers this season. Highly regarded for his defense, the 24-year-old has moved quickly through their system, spending 2010 at High-A Lakeland, 2011 at Double-A Erie and 2012 at Triple-A Toledo.

    In 214 minor league games, Holaday has batted .237/.314/.340 while posting a 32 percent caught-stealing rate with only 13 total passed balls.

    In his previous call-up in June, the right-handed hitter collected three hits in 10 at-bats over four games.

     

    RHP Luis Marte

    Signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2005, this will be the 26-year-old’s third stint with the Tigers. In 21 career big league innings, the right-hander has registered a 3.43 ERA, 7.3 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9.

    A full-time reliever since the 2010 season, Marte owns a career 3.21 ERA, 9.0 K/9 and 3.0 BB/9 in 452 minor league innings.

Kansas City Royals

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    C Manny Pina

    A 25-year-old defense-oriented catcher, Pina has thrown out 36 percent of base stealers over his seven-year minor league career, including a 53 percent clip this season at Double-A prior to his promotion.

    Last season, Pina appeared in four games with the Royals and batted .214/.267/.357 with three hits in 15 plate appearances.

     

    OF David Lough

    A 26-year-old left-handed hitting outfielder, Lough was an 11th-round selection by the Royals in the 2007 draft.

    Having spent the last three seasons at Triple-A Omaha, one can assume that his September call-up was more than welcomed.

    In six minor league seasons, Lough has batted .294/.346/.458 with 115 doubles, 49 triples, 62 home runs and 91 stolen bases in 640 games.

    Prior to the news of his promotion, he was batting .275/.317/.420 with 40 extra-base hits and 26 stolen bases in 130 games at Triple-A.

Los Angeles Angels

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    SS Andrew Romine

    The 26-year-old—who’s known for his slick defense—Romine has made appearances with the Angels in each of the last three seasons. In each stint, the left-handed hitter has struggled at the plate, batting .179/.238/.179 with 13 strikeouts in 22 games.

    Romine will once again serve as a reserve middle infielder off the Angels bench, as he hopes to awaken his bat this time around.

     

    LHP Nick Maronde

    One of the more surprising call-ups thus far, Maronde, was the Angels’ third-round draft pick in 2011 out of the University of Florida and missed about a month this season with a strained lat.

    The 22-year-old left-hander possesses a plus fastball and slider, as well as a changeup that has steadily improved. He profiles as much as a starter as he does a reliever.

    Logging 99.2 innings this season (only 32.1 at Double-A), Maronde posted a 6-4 record with a 2.26 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, 90 strikeouts and 19 walks.

     

    LHP Andrew Taylor

    A 26-year-old left-handed pitcher drafted in the 34th round in 2008, Taylor has spent the 2012 season working exclusively as a reliever.

    In 59 innings this season, mostly at Double-A, he posted a 3-4 record with a 4.27 ERA, 8.5 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9.

Los Angeles Dodgers

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    C Tim Federowicz

    A defense-first catcher, Federowicz is an exceptional blocker behind the plate with above-average receiving skills and an accurate arm. In 382 minor league games behind the plate, he’s hosed 35% of hopeful base-stealers with only 17 passed balls.

    Although he doesn’t have much power, Federowicz has the potential to hit for a respectable average at the big-league level if given an everyday opportunity. 

    In five minor league seasons, the 25-year-old has batted .282/.348/.433 with 133 doubles, 44 home runs and 181 walks.

Miami Marlins

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    LHP Dan Jennings

    Despite his handedness and the fact that he possesses arguably the top slider in the organization, it took Jennings three years to the reach the major leagues after initially reaching Double-A.

    He has an above-average two-pitch mix (fastball-slider), but has always allowed too many base runners via hits and walks. Still, the strikeout rates have always been there, so if Jennings can put it together, he has the potential to stick in the bullpen.

    RHP Tom Koehler

    An 18th-rounder in 2008, Koehler has been consistent since entering the Marlins’ system, posting a sub-four ERA at every level below Triple-A.

    His fastball works in the low-90s and lacks life, and tends to flatten out when left up in the zone. He mixes in a cutter and what seems like a knuckle-curve, as well as an above-average changeup.

    I’d be surprised if he’s more than an organizational arm, but given the Marlins rotation, Koehler could see extended time as a backend starter.

Milwaukee Brewers

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    IF Eric Farris

    Farris will be returning to the major leagues after a one-day cup-of-coffee in July of 2011 where he received one at-bat.

    In his third-straight season at Triple-A Nashville, Farris is a speedy, hard-nosed second baseman that has above-average range and defensive actions. He speed plays up a grade due to his instincts and all-out hustle.

    At the plate, Farris is a hyper-aggressive hitter who puts the ball in play but could stand to draw more walks. He’ll hit is share of doubles over the course of the season, but don’t expect much power beyond that.

    Prior to his call-up, 26-year-old right-handed hitter was batting .286/.329/.377 with 29 extra-base hits and 35 stolen bases in 131 games at Triple-A Nashville.

New York Mets

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    1B/3B Zach Lutz

    A fifth-round draft pick of the Mets in 2007, the 26-year-old Lutz has batted .288/.386/.488 with 55 home runs in 345 career minor leagues games. He has reached Triple-A Buffalo in each of the last three seasons.

    Expected to provide additional depth behind the plate, he was batting .295/.404/.496 with 10 home runs and 42 walks in 72 games this season.

New York Yankees

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    LHP Justin Thomas

    Selected off waivers by the Yankees from the Boston Red Sox in May of 2012, Thomas logged 21.2 innings in the major leagues since 2008.

    The 28-year-old left-hander owns a 6.65 ERA and 2.26 WHIP in his time with the Mariners (2008), Pirates (2010) and Red Sox (2012).

    This will be his first stint in the major leagues with the Yankees.

     

    RHP Adam Warren

    Although there’s minimal projection left with Warren—a 25-year-old who was selected by the Yankees in the fourth round of the 2009 draft—he’s excelled thanks to above-average command and ability to eat innings.

    At Triple-A this season, the right-hander is 7-8 with a 3.71 ERA and 1.40 WHIP in 152.2 innings (26 starts).

    He made his major league debut earlier this season, allowing six earned runs on eight hits and two walks in 2.1 innings.

Oakland Athletics

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    UTIL Brandon Hicks

    Drafted in the third round of the 2007 draft by the Braves, Hicks was at one time considered the team’s future shortstop. However, he’s never quite developed as hoped and was selected off waivers by the A’s in March of 2012.

    In six minor league seasons, the 26-year-old has batted .241/.334/.432 with 80 home runs, 60 stolen bases and 640 strikeouts in 563 career games.

    Capable of playing any infield position, Hicks is batting .140/.204/.302 with eight extra-base hits and 40 strikeouts in 93 career plate appearances in the major leagues.

Philadelphia Phillies

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    RHP Justin De Fratus

    After reaching the major leagues with the Phillies late last season, De Fratus has missed most of the season on the disabled list, recovering from an elbow injury. After a rehab assignment, the 24-year-old returned to Triple-A on July 19 and appeared in eight games.

    The right-hander relies on his plus fastball-slider combination and is aggressive with his placement of both pitches. De Fratus has the dominant two-pitch arsenal that’s ideal for a closer.

     

    LHP Jake Diekman 

    Drafted in the 30th round of the 2007 draft out of a Kansas community college, Diekman has always been held back by his control issues. He’s always possessed swing-and-miss stuff as evidenced by his batting average against over the last three minor league season (.187, .199 and .196, respectively).

    He appeared in 23 games with the Phillies earlier this season, posting a 4.64 ERA with 29 strikeouts and 15 walks in 21.1 innings. 

Pittsburgh Pirates

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    C/OF Eric Fryer

    Drafted by the Brewers in the 10th round of the 2007 draft, Fryer was traded to the Yankees in February of 2009 and then to the Pirates in June for Eric Hinske.

    The 27-year-old right-handed hitter is adept defensively both behind the plate and at either corner outfield spot. In 479 minor league games, Fryer has batted .273/.361/.409 with 87 doubles, 33 home runs and 46 stolen bases.

    This season at Triple-A Indianapolis, he was batting .204/.257/.247 in 65 games prior to his promotion.

     

    LHP Jeff Locke

    A 24-year-old left-hander, Locke is slated to begin is second stint with the Pirates this season. Drafted by the Braves in the second round of the 2006 draft, he was traded to the Pirates in June of 2009 in exchange for Nate McClouth.

    A starting pitcher in the minor leagues, he owns a 51-44 career record, 3.60 ERA, 1.262 WHIP, 8.3 K/9, 0.5 HR/9 and 2.5 BB/9 in 154 games spanning seven seasons.

    In 21 career innings with Pirates between 2011 and 2012, Locke has registered a 5.14 ERA in six games.

     

    LHP Justin Wilson

    After striking out the side in his major league debut on Aug. 20, it’s no surprise that the hard-throwing left-hander has returned to the major leagues.

    The Pirates' fifth-round selection in the 2008 draft, the 6’2” left-hander has never quite put it all together as a starter in the minor leagues.

    Appearing in 112 games (98 of which were starts), Wilson has posted a 36-30 record, 3.83 ERA, 1.35 WHIP, 7.6 H/9, 8.0 K/9 and 4.5 BB/9 over 518.2 innings.

    He’s arguably enjoying his best minor league season to date with a 9-6 record, 3.78 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 9.2 K/9 and 4.4 BB/9 in 135.2 innings.

    Wilson will once again serve as a late-inning left-handed option out of the Pirates bullpen.

     

    2B/SS Brock Holt

    Selected in the ninth round of the 2009 draft by the Pirates, the 24-year-old has received his first big league call-up after ascending up the system in a four seasons.

    A 5’10”, 165-pound left-handed hitter, Holt has a respectable hit tool but no power. In 371 career minor league games, he’s batting .317/.381/.427 with 87 doubles, 19 triples, 11 home runs, 49 stolen bases and 206 walks.

    Splitting time between Double-A and Triple-A this season, Holt is batting .344/.406/.453 and has committed 23 errors in 98 games at shortstop.

Seattle Mariners

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    RHP Erasmo Ramirez

    Signed as a free agent out of Nicaragua in 2007, the 22-year-old was a surprise addition to the active roster after breaking camp with the Mariners.

    Pitching in 11 games for the Mariners this season (four starts), the 5’11”, 205-pound right-hander posted a 3.82 ERA, 1.109 WHIP, 7.3 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 in 30.2 innings.

    Pitching in his second straight season at Triple-A Tacoma, Ramirez was 6-3 with a 3.72 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 6.8 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 in 77.1 innings this season.

San Francisco Giants

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    RHP Jean Machi

    A 30-year-old right-hander, Machi has spent 11 seasons in the minor leagues without a big league call-up, having pitched for the Philadelphia (2002-2003), Tampa Bay when they were still known as the Devil Rays (2005-2006), Toronto (2007-2008), Pittsburgh (2009-2010) and the Giants since 2011.

    Logging 606.1 minor league innings, Machi owns a 31-38 record with a 3.84 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 7.5 K/9, 4.1 BB/9.

St. Louis Cardinals

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    RHP Shelby Miller (this week)

    After only nine starts for High-A Palm Beach in 2011, Miller upped his ETA by dominating at Double-A Springfield. He has an excellent pitcher’s frame at 6'3" and 195 pounds; however, concern grew after he showed up to spring training out of shape.

    Miller typically throws a heavy 93-97 mph fastball with arm-side run that generates a healthy mixture of swing-and-misses and weak contact. To complement his heater, Miller throws two above-average off-speed pitches: a sharp, downer curve and a fading changeup. He has already shown the ability to work deep into games while sustaining his velocity and has a frame built for innings.

    One of the top pitching prospects in all of baseball headed into 2012 season, Miller is in the midst of a rough season at Triple-A Memphis. The right-hander has allowed 138 hits and 24 home runs in 136.2 innings and is learning that he can’t get away with working up in the zone and relying on velocity—which was reportedly hovering in the 90-93 mph range for most of the season.

    After the All-Star break, though, Miller has basically reversed the fate of his season, recording a 7.2 record with a 2.88 ERA, 70 strikeouts and only seven walks in 59.1 innings.

     

    LHP Sam Freeman

    Freeman, a 25-year-old left-hander, returns to the major leagues after registering a 6.00 ERA in 12 innings with the Cardinals earlier this season.

    In just under 200 career minor league innings, Freeman owns a 2.68 ERA and 8.3 K/9.

Tampa Bay Rays

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    OF Rich Thompson

    Known for his plus speed and defense, Thompson returned to the major leagues with Tampa Bay this season for the first time since appearing in six games with the Royals in 2004. That’s right; he spent eight years working his way back to the major leagues.

    Now 33, Thompson batted .059/.158/.059 with two stolen bases and got his first big league hit in nine games with the Rays earlier this season.

Texas Rangers

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    SS Jurickson Profar

    Profar has shown exactly why he’s the top prospect in all of baseball.

    The youngest player in Double-A all season, the 19-year-old has thrived, making easy adjustments without showing any concerning holes in his game. He possesses an above-average hit tool from both sides of the plate that’s highlighted by quick wrists and an advanced feel for the strike zone.

    At the time of his call-up to the major leagues, Profar was batting .281/.368/.452 with 135 hits, 26 doubles, seven triples, 14 home runs, 16 stolen bases, 79 strikeouts and 66 walks for Double-A Frisco.

    As we all saw in the XM Futures Game, Profar has surprising pop for his size that, when bundled with his quick wrists, could yield 15 to 20 home runs in his prime—possibly even more.

    Although his speed only grades out as above average, Profar is an adept base stealer who has been successful in 16 of 20 attempts this season.

    His quickness is more noticeable on defense, as Profar has excellent range at shortstop and clean actions through the baseball. He is a plus defender with soft hands and also possesses a strong arm that will allow him to remain at the position.

    The top position prospect in the minor leagues, Profar has the potential to be a superstar given his natural ability as a switch-hitter and defensive prowess at short.

    While he’s still young and would benefit from more experience, he will spend the final month of the season coming off the Rangers bench, playing both shortstop and second base while receiving the occasional start.

    There’s a strong chance that Profar will be included on the team’s postseason roster.

     

    OF Leonys Martin

    Signed by the Rangers in 2011 as a free agent, the highly athletic and toolsy outfielder has batted .217/.280/.413 with seven extra-base hits and 11 strikeouts in 25 games with the Rangers between 2011 and 2012.

    This season, the 24-year-old is tearing it up at Triple-A with a 1.033 OPS and 10 stolen bases in 55 games.

    A left-handed bat with plus speed, his plate discipline is good enough that with enough experience in the major leagues, he should at least hit for a decent average. 

     

    RHP Tanner Scheppers

    Drafted in the first round of the 2009 draft, Scheppers has never quite met his potential despite possessing a high-90s sinker. In 173.2 minor league innings, the 25-year-old right-hander has posted a 4.15 ERA with 19 saves and a 9.6 K/9.

    In 25.2 innings with the Rangers this season, Scheppers owns a 4.56 ERA, 1.64 WHIP, 8.1 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9.

     

    LHP Martin Perez

    After struggling at Triple-A in 2011, the 21-year-old left-hander took another step back while repeating the level this season.

    Some contend that Perez has been rushed through the Rangers system, which is probably true. Although he has a three-pitch mix of at least above-average offerings—his curveball is a legitimate plus pitch—his command has been shaky over the last two seasons.

    However, Perez got hot at the right time in July and was promoted to the major leagues in the wake of several injuries on the Rangers staff.

    Between two separate stints this season, the left-hander is 1-1 with a 4.05 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, 4.5 K/9 and 3.6 BB/9 in 20 innings.

    Perez will likely serve as a left-handed option out of the bullpen, and possibly receive a few spot starts over the final month of the season.

Washington Nationals

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    OF Eury Perez

    One of the fastest players and top base stealers in the minor leagues, Perez’s contact and on-base skills have steadily improved over the last two seasons. However, he still leaves something to be desired as a potential top-of-the-order hitter.

    His speed plays well in the outfield where he is an above-average defender with a plus arm. He’s handled the jump to the upper levels well this season, and the major leagues should serve as a definitive test for the athletic outfielder.

    At the time of his promotion, the 22-year-old was batting .314/.344/.361 with 22 extra-base hits and 51 stolen bases across three levels. 

     

    OF Corey Brown

    A 26-year-old left-handed hitting outfield, Brown has enjoyed two brief stints with the Nationals between 2011 and 2012. He even notched his first big league tater during his most recent call-up.

    A first-round pick in 2007 by the Athletics, Brown has batted .269/.355/.485 with 102 home runs, 70 stolen bases and 712 strikeouts in 637 minor leagues games spanning six seasons.

    As a big leaguer, Brown has batted .158/.158/.368 with three hits in 20 plate appearances over 12 career games.

     

    RHP Christian Garcia

    Although the Nationals have a well-rounded team with depth at nearly every position, they could still use extra help in the bullpen.

    Garcia, now with his third organization, has been in the minor leagues since 2004 and had several stints on the disabled list with injuries; he even missed the entire 2007 season.

    However, he’s been lights-out this season, posting a 1.35 ERA and 12.60 K/9 at Double-A and now a 0.57 ERA and 10.9 K/9 at Triple-A. He spent most of his early career as a starter, but he has proved to be an effective reliever since a conversion in 2010.

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