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Stock Up, Stock Down for Atlanta Braves' Top 10 Prospects for Week 10

Gavin AndrewsCorrespondent IIJune 10, 2013

Stock Up, Stock Down for Atlanta Braves' Top 10 Prospects for Week 10

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    After 10 weeks of baseball, the Atlanta Braves have seemingly promoted two of their top-10 prospects into the major league ranks for good. 

    Julio Teheran, the jewel of the Braves' farm system, has finally figured things out and thrived in the back end of the Atlanta rotation. He has even pitched well enough for Braves writers to speculate that Atlanta would either move Paul Maholm or Kris Medlen out of the rotation once Brandon Beachy returns from injury in order for Teheran to continue pitching every fifth day.

    Alex Wood, who still retains prospect eligibility and therefore still is making an appearance on this list, has given the Atlanta bullpen a much-needed lift, satisfying two needs with one arm and answering the call rather well.

    Here are how the rest of the Braves' prospects performed last week.

    Prospect rankings courtesy of Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com.

10. Cody Martin

2 of 11

    Level: Double-A (Mississippi)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 3-3, 2.97 ERA, 1.40 WHIP, 60.2 IP, 59 H, 26 BB, 60 K

    Last Week's Stats: 1-0, 10.0 IP, 3 ER, 11 H, 6 BB, 10 K

     

    Analysis

    The advanced right-hander out of Gonzaga bounced back after a rough outing to have a promising two-start week. 

    Cody Martin's strikeout rate is incredibly promising. His fastball and change-up are average pitches, but his cutter and command are tools that will enable him to have success in the major leagues.

    However, his command was spotty last week with six walks in 10 innings. He'll be looking to harness his control this week.

    Stock: Even

9. Juan Jaime

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    Level: Double-A (Mississippi)

    Position: Reliever

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 0-1, 1.42 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, 12.2 IP, 7 H, 8 BB, 20 K

    Last Week's Stats: 0-0, 2.2 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 3 K

     

    Analysis

    Juan Jaime's control was not exceptional last week, as he walked two hitters in 2.2 innings. With his incredible fastball however, he was able to bail himself out of trouble, garnering three strikeouts.

    With the Braves bullpen in flux, expect to see Jaime in the majors sometime this season.

    Stock: Up

8. Todd Cunningham

4 of 11

    Level: Triple-A (Gwinnett)

    Position: Outfield

    Throws/Bats: R/S

    Season Stats: .268/.361/.366, 32 R, 9 2B, 3 3B, 2 HR, 20 RBI, 26 BB, 34 K, 9 SB

    Last Week's Stats: .320/.393/.400, 4 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI, 3 BB, 2 K

     

    Analysis

    Todd Cunningham's stock continues to rise. After a very rough start to the season, he has almost pushed his average up to .270.

    He might never hit for any power, but with Cunningham's plate discipline, speed and knack for putting the ball in play, he'll be able to hold his own at the plate in the major leagues with time. In addition, with his fielding ability in center, he should soon find a niche in the big leagues.

    Stock: Up

7. Matt Lipka

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    Level: High-A (Lynchburg)

    Position: Outfield

    Throws/Bats: R/R

    Season Stats: .272/.317/.421, 35 R, 17 2B, 3 3B, 4 HR, 29 RBI, 14 BB, 42 K, 12 SB

    Last Week's Stats:.333/.333/.458, 2 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 3 K

     

    Analysis

    Like Todd Cunningham, Matt Lipka has continued to shine in recent weeks, hitting for average and surprising gap-power. 

    Unlike Cunningham, however, Lipka needs to improve his strikeout-to-walk ratio if he wants to climb into Double-A this season.

    With its outfield stacked for at least the next three years, Atlanta might consider playing Lipka at second base, as the former shortstop might have the versatile glove to be the long-term answer at second for the Braves.

    Stock: Up

6. Mauricio Cabrera

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    Level: Low-A (Rome)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 1-4, 5.04 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, 64.1 IP, 62 H, 37 BB, 52 K

    Last Week's Stats: 0-1, 4.0 IP, 6 ER, 8 H, 4 BB, 7 K

     

    Analysis

    Mauricio Cabrera got shelled again this week, giving up six runs and eight hits in four innings. The seven strikeouts were a nice aspect to his last start, but the four walks put a damper on that performance.

    Fortunately, Cabrera is very young and very has several tools at his disposal on the mound, so he'll have the entire year to figure things out at Low-A Rome.

    Stock: Down

5. Alex Wood

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    Level: Majors

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Left-handed

    Season Stats: 4-2, 1.26 ERA, 0.98 WHIP, 57.0 IP, 41 H, 15 BB, 57 K (at Double-A)

    0-0, 2.45 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 3.2 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, 3 K (in Atlanta)

    Last Week's Stats: 0-0, 2.2 IP, 1 ER, 2 H, 1 BB, 3 K

     

    Analysis

    Alex Wood continues to be an asset for the Atlanta bullpen, providing long-relief and southpaw options to a unit sorely in need of both.

    In striking out three hitters in 2.2 innings, he is showing that he can make big league hitters miss—something that will be valuable to this Braves staff, regardless of whether he finds himself in a starting role or in relief.

    Stock: Up

4. Sean Gilmartin

8 of 11

    Level: Triple-A (Gwinnett)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Left-handed

    Season Stats: 3-5, 4.43 ERA, 1.51 WHIP, 63.0 IP, 71 H, 24 BB, 43 K 

    Last Week's Stats: 0-1, 6.0 IP, 4 ER, 8 H, 3 BB, 5 K

     

    Analysis

    For a pitcher who thrives on breaking pitches and command, Sean Gilmartin has shown very little command this season, which is allowing him to be very hittable.

    Last week's eight-hit, four-run, three-walk performance is a pretty accurate microcosm of his 2013 season thus far. Given that his strikeout totals are promising, Gilmartin will have a shot at a rotation spot next year if he can find the grip on his control.

    Stock: Down

3. Lucas Sims

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    Level: Low-A (Rome)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 2-2, 3.25 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 36.0 IP, 25 H, 17 BB, 40 K

    Last Week's Stats: 1-0, 5.0 IP, 2 ER, 7 H, 0 BB, 3 K

     

    Analysis

    Ever since the first couple weeks of the season, Lucas Sims has thrived. While he gave up seven hits and only struck out three in his last start, his overall stat line should be extremely encouraging for the Braves' 2012 first-round pick.

    At this rate, Sims has a very good shot of ending the year as Atlanta's No. 1-ranked prospect.

    Stock: Even

2. Christian Bethancourt

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    Level: Double-A (Mississippi)

    Position: Catcher

    Throws/Bats: R/R

    Season Stats: .241/.254/.314, 11 R, 7 2B, 1 HR, 12 RBI, 2 BB, 29 K, 6 SB

    Last Week's Stats: .050/.050/.050, 1 R, 5 K

     

    Analysis

    Last week was a week that Bethancourt would like to forget. 

    Not much expounding is needed here, but at 21 years old, Christian Bethancourt needs to start showing offensive growth soon. His lack of plate discipline has reared its ugly head this season (as his 2/29 BB/K ratio demonstrates) and is severely limiting his offensive output. 

    Defensively though, Bethancourt could be a very good major league regular right now, althought his bat is going to need to catch up.

    Stock: Down

1. J.R. Graham

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    Level: Double-A (Mississippi)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 1-3, 4.04 ERA, 1.37 WHIP, 35.2 IP, 39 H, 10 BB, 28 SO

    Last Week's Stats: 7-day disabled list; no action seen.

     

    Analysis

    Still on the disabled list, there isn't much to write about J.R. Graham.

    His upper-90s sinking fastball produces a lot of ground balls, but surprisingly few strikeouts. This season will serve to determine whether or not Graham has the stamina and sustained effectiveness to remain a starter. If not, he could easily take over for Craig Kimbrel as the undisputed closer in a few years should Kimbrel become too expensive for Atlanta.

    However, until Graham gets healthy, not much regarding his growth will be discovered.

    Stock: Even

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