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San Francisco Giants: Stock Up, Stock Down for Top 10 Prospects for Week 12

Mark ReynoldsCorrespondent IIJune 15, 2016

San Francisco Giants: Stock Up, Stock Down for Top 10 Prospects for Week 12

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    The San Francisco Giants are approaching the halfway point of the season in dire straits. They lost three out of four at home to the lowly Miami Marlins—the worst team in baseball—over the weekend.

    The Giants are just 38-37, and they've been outscored by their opponents by 15 runs. Pablo Sandoval is due to come back off the disabled list on Monday to provide a boost to a tepid offense (h/t Alex Pavlovic, San Jose Mercury News). However, the Giants need more than Sandoval's return to get out of their current malaise.

    With the trade deadline approaching, the Giants are probably going to have to turn to the farm system to make a deal to improve the big league squad.

    Let's take a look at how the Giants' top 10 prospects did last week in advance of the deadline.

     

    All statistics in this article are courtesy of MiLB.com and Baseball-Reference.com.

1. Clayton Blackburn

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    2013 Stats at High-A San Jose

    13 GS, 3-4, 4.80 ERA, 19 BB, 79 K, 69.1 IP

     

    Overview

    Clayton Blackburn was hit hard on Sunday. He allowed eight hits and eight runs over 3.1 innings as his ERA shot up to 4.80.

    Blackburn has been inconsistent this season. He's had some exceptional starts in which he looked like the top prospect in the system. He's also had four starts in which he allowed five runs or more.

    Those ups and downs are to be expected from a 20-year-old pitching at the High-A level. However, with Kyle Crick back in the fold after returning from injury, Blackburn's status as the Giants' top arm is in jeopardy after his tough outing on Sunday.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    1 GS, 3.1 IP, 8 H, 8 R, 6 ER, 1 BB, 3 K

     

    Stock

    Down

2. Kyle Crick

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    2013 Stats at High-A San Jose 

    4 GS, 0-1 W-L, 0.66 ERA, 12 BB, 22 K, 13.2 IP

     

    Overview

    Crick returned with a vengeance on Friday night after missing most of the season with an oblique injury suffered during this third start. He struck out 10 over four shutout innings. He walked three and allowed three hits.

    Crick's fastball reportedly sat between 92-95 mph and reached as high as 96 (h/t Conner Penfold, Giant Potential). Crick's outstanding stuff was the reason Baseball America ranked him as the Giants' top prospect during the offseason.

    Crick's stock has dropped some during the season because of the oblique injury.

    Now that Crick is back in action and pumping mid-90s heat by hitters, he's well on his way to reclaiming the top overall spot in the system.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    1 GS, 4 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 10 K

     

    Stock

    Up

3. Chris Stratton

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    2013 Stats at Low-A Augusta

    12 GS, 7-3, 3.39 ERA, 23 BB, 78 K, 71.2 IP

     

    Overview

    Chris Stratton boosted his stock with another good outing on Sunday. He allowed six hits, one run and no walks while striking out six over six innings.

    Stratton has had a solid first year in the system after the Giants used their first-round pick on him last season. Stratton throws in the 91-93 mph range and he'll touch 95.

    He doesn't have quite the pure stuff of a Kyle Crick, and he doesn't have the same elite control as Blackburn. However, he combines good stuff with solid command, making him a very good overall prospect for the Giants.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    1 GS, 6 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K

     

    Stock

    Up

4. Martin Agosta

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    2013 Stats at Low-A Augusta

    13 GS, 7-2, 2.20 ERA, 29 BB, 89 K, 69.2 IP

     

    Overview

    Martin Agosta left his start on Saturday after one inning due to a dead arm, according to David Lee of The Augusta Chronicle.

    Agosta threw 70 innings in his first year at St. Mary's, 89.2 during his second season and 103.1 in 2012 before the Giants drafted him in the second round. He then threw 10.2 innings for the Giants' rookie-league affiliate.

    Thus, it isn't surprising for Agosta to hit a bit of a wall. He's still a young pitcher developing his stamina and learning how to pitch every fifth or sixth day.

    He's had an outstanding year to this point. The key for the rest of Agosta's season will be for him to battle through this dead-arm period and continue to build strength.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    1 GS, 1 IP, 1 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 1 K

     

    Stock

    Down

5. Andrew Susac

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    2013 Stats at Double-A Richmond

    .273/.381/.483, .864 OPS, 16 2B, 9 HR

     

    Overview

    Andrew Susac has gotten hot again at Double-A Richmond. He's hitting .286/.364/.536 with two home runs over his last 10 games.

    For the season, Susac is now hitting .273 with 27 extra-base hits in 205 at-bats. His combination of patience, power and the ability to catch makes him the top prospect amongst position players in the Giants' farm system.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    6-for-18, 2 HR, 3 BB

     

    Stock

    Up

6. Joe Panik

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    2013 Stats at Double-A Richmond

    .255/.345/.350, .695 OPS, 14 2B, 3 3B, 2 HR

     

    Overview

    Joe Panik swung the bat better last week, as he came out of a brutal slump. He went 5-for-18 (.277) with two doubles and three walks.

    Panik has walked 38 times while striking out in only 28 of his 274 at-bats this season. He gets the bat on the ball and he gets on base.

    However, he's only hitting .255, and he isn't hitting for power. Panik needs to get his batting and slugging averages up to reclaim from Susac the mantle as the top hitting prospect in the Giants system.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    5-for-18, 2 2B, 3 BB

     

    Stock

    Even

7. Heath Hembree

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    2013 Stats at Triple-A Fresno

    29 GP, 1-2, 5.58 ERA, 10 BB, 35 K, 30.2 IP, 14 Saves

     

    Overview

    Heath Hembree's recent struggles has stalled his progress through the Giants system.

    The Giants have needed help in the bullpen, but they've not yet turned to the player regarded as the team's top relief prospect. Instead, Jean Machi, Ramon Ramirez, Jake Dunning and Sandy Rosario have all been promoted over Hembree this season.

    Hembree has been getting roughed up of late. Over his last 10 games, he's allowed 18 hits and 14 runs en route to a 10.97 ERA.

    In two appearances last week, he allowed five hits, two walks, two home runs and eight earned runs over just 1.1 innings.

    Hembree has fallen on hard times during a stretch in which the big-league club has needed bullpen help. He will have to turn things around in a hurry to get a shot at the show this year.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    2 GP, 1.1 IP, 5 H, 8 ER, 2 BB, 3 K

     

    Stock

    Down

8. Michael Kickham

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    2013 Stats at Triple-A Fresno

    14 GS, 3-5, 4.81 ERA, 33 BB, 69 K, 78.2 IP

     

    2013 Stats with San Francisco

    1 GS, 0-1, 15.43 ERA, 4 BB, 3 K, 2.1 IP

     

    Overview

    Michael Kickham had his best start with Fresno since the Giants demoted him after his big-league debut. He allowed just one run over 7.2 solid innings last week.

    With Chad Gaudin's next start in jeopardy due to a right elbow contusion, Kickham could get another shot with the Giants. If Kickham does get the call to fill in for Gaudin, he'll have to throw more strikes than he did the first time around.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    1 GS, 7.2 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

     

    Stock

    Up

9. Gary Brown

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    2013 Stats at Triple-A Fresno

    .244/.304/.422, .727 OPS, 21 2B, 2 3B, 10 HR

     

    Overview

    Gary Brown continued his hot streak last week. He's hitting .359/.405/.744 with four home runs over his last 10 games.

    Brown has improved his performance by hitting for power. He now has 33 extra-base hits on the season, which is approaching his total of 44 from all of last year.

    Brown still needs to make adjustments in other areas of his game before he can be considered ready for the big leagues. He's walked only 19 times against 77 strikeouts. He's also stolen just nine bases in 16 attempts this year.

    Brown needs to walk more, strikeout less and improve his base stealing to become a legitimate leadoff hitter. Though his recent power display at the Triple-A level has been impressive, he still needs to smooth out the rough edges of his game.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    13-for-37, 4 HR, 3 2B

     

    Stock

    Up

10. Adam Duvall

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    2013 Stats at Double-A Richmond

    .268/.331/.510, .841 OPS, 11 2B, 3 3B, 7 HR

     

    Overview

    Adam Duvall has seen his stock slip due to some recent struggles at the plate. He's hitting just .184/.244/.289 over his last 10 games.

    Along with Susac and Mac Williamson, Duvall has some of the best power in the system, He's slugging .510 with 21 extra-base hits in 157 at-bats this season. He blasted 22 home runs two years ago and 30 more in 2012.

    Duvall is struggling right now, but the power is still there. Two of his five hits last week went for extra bases.

     

    Last Week's Stats

    5-for-26, 1 HR, 1 2B, 2 BB

     

    Stock

    Down

Honorable Mention

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    Here are some other notable prospects to keep an eye on:

    Eric Surkamp has thrown well over four starts with San Jose during his return from Tommy John surgery. He's put up a 3.18 ERA with 11 strikeouts in 11.1 innings.

    George Kontos has struck out 10 against one walk while putting up a 3.52 ERA over 7.2 innings since his demotion to Fresno.

    Roger Kieschnick is hitting .274/.331/.520 with 11 home runs at Triple-A Fresno.

    Francisco Peguero is currently on the disabled list. He was hitting .310/.355/.406 at Fresno before going down with an injury.

    Edwin Escobar has a 3.18 ERA and 73 strikeouts in 56.2 innings for San Jose.

    Ty Blach is 7-2 with a 2.64 ERA for San Jose. He's struck out 63 against only eight walks.

    Joan Gregorio is 3-1 with a 3.00 ERA at Augusta. He's struck out 42 while walking only six in 36 innings of work.

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