Rafael Montero, RHP, New York Mets
5.2 IP, 1.59 ERA, 2 H, 8/0 K/BB (1 G)
Keep your eye on Rafael Montero. After drawing rave reviews from coaches and teammates alike this spring, the 22-year-old right-hander was electric in his Double-A debut. With a three-pitch mix that’s highlighted by a plus fastball and slider, it’s conceivable that he’ll reach the major leagues at some point this season.
Asher Wojciechowski, RHP, Houston Astros
5 IP, H, 7/1 K/BB (1 G)
Acquired from the Blue Jays last summer, Wojciechowski was promoted to Double-A upon joining the Astros, where he registered a 2.06 ERA over eight starts. At 6’4”, 235 pounds, the right-hander has a frame capable of eating innings, while his four-pitch mix could potentially get him to the major leagues by September.
Alex Meyer, RHP, Minnesota Twins
5 IP, 1.80 ERA, 6 H, 8/1 K/BB (1 G)
The 6’9” right-hander should make quick work of Double-A thanks to a mid-to-high-90s fastball, devastating slider and steadily improving changeup. Don’t be surprised if he reaches the major leagues earlier than expected this season.
Adam Conley, LHP, Miami Marlins
5 IP, H, 8/0 K/BB (1 G)
After registering a 3.47 ERA with 135/43 K/BB in 127 innings last season across both Class-A levels, Conley, a left-hander, was outstanding his Double-A debut.
Brian Flynn, LHP, Miami Marlins
6 IP, 4 H, 9/0 K/BB (1 G)
Acquired by the Marlins last summer in the deal that sent Anibal Sanchez and Omar to Detroit, Flynn posted a 3.80 ERA over eight starts in Double-A to finish the year. At 6’7”, 240 pounds, the left-hander may fly under the radar this season, but is nonetheless a name to follow closely.
Jesse Biddle, LHP, Philadelphia Phillies
6 IP, 1.50 ERA, 2 H, 6/1 K/BB (1 G)
Ranked as the Phillies’ top prospect headed into the 2013 season, Biddle’s stuff and command has steadily improved in each minor league season. The 6’4” left-hander was excellent in his Double-A debut and appears poised for yet another strong campaign.
Cody Buckel, RHP, Texas Rangers
2.2 IP, 23.62 ERA, 5 H, 2/5 K/BB (1 G)
After thriving across High-A and Double-A last season, Buckel has struggled to right the ship following a poor showing this spring in major league camp. And considering that he’s showcased above-average command in previous seasons, the right-hander’s recent control issues are concerning.
Nathan Karns, RHP, Washington Nationals
3.2 IP, 17.18 ERA, 7 H, 3/3 K/BB (1 G)
The Nationals’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year last season, Karns, 25, registered a 2.17 ERA with 148 strikeouts in 116 innings across both Class-A levels. His first Double-A start was ugly, but expect the right-hander to bounce back.
Chad Bettis, RHP, Colorado Rockies
5 IP, 7.20 ERA, 9 H, 4/1 K/BB (1 G)
After fanning 184 batters in 169.2 innings at High-A in 2011, Bettis missed the entire 2012 season with an arm injury. He should eventually find his groove as he shakes off a thick coat of rust, though it may take longer than expected given the jump to Double-A.
Ariel Pena, RHP, Milwaukee Brewers
3.1 IP, 13.50 ERA, 3 H, 2/5 K/BB (1 G)
Acquired from the Angels last summer as part of the Zack Greinke deal, Pena’s command has been uninspiring since joining the Brewers, as he’s now walked 28 batters in 35.2 Double-A innings dating back to last season.
Kevin Gausman, RHP, Baltimore Orioles
4 IP, 9.00 ERA, 8 H, 8/0 K/BB (1 G)
Fresh off an impressive showing in major league camp, Gausman—who boasts the best changeup in the minors—was knocked around in his Double-A debut. On the bright side, the hard-throwing right-hander did fan eight batters and induced five ground-ball outs.