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Stock Up, Stock Down for Atlanta Braves' Top 10 Prospects for Week 13

Gavin AndrewsCorrespondent IIOctober 9, 2016

Stock Up, Stock Down for Atlanta Braves' Top 10 Prospects for Week 13

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    On July 4, former Braves top prospect Julio Teheran tossed five innings of seven-strikeout baseball, walking only two in the process. 

    Once considered a disappointment, Teheran has blossomed in the first half of 2013, posting an ERA of 3.23, a FIP of 3.68, a strikeout rate of 7.89 K/9, and most strikingly, a walk rate of 1.70 BB/9.

    However, with the promotion of Teheran, the Braves suddenly find their farm system almost devoid of high-upside players. There are still a couple in the top-10 though, so let's see how they fared last week.

    Prospect rankings and season stats courtesy of MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo, while last week's stats were found on Baseball-Reference.

10. Cody Martin

2 of 11

    Level: AAA (Gwinnett)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 3-3, 2.82 ERA, 1.34 WHIP, 67.0 IP, 63 H, 27 BB, 71 K (AA)

    2-1, 1.38 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 26.0 IP, 16 H, 9 BB, 32 K (AAA)

    Last Week's Stats: 0-0, 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 5 H, 4 BB, 8 K

     

    Analysis

    Even with shaky command in his most recent outing, Cody Martin continues to dominate the upper-minor leagues, striking out eight hitters over just five innings.

    The extent of Martin's success gives the Braves brass a wealth of options at this year's trade deadline (and beyond, for that matter), allowing Atlanta to add Martin as either a bullpen piece or an emergency starter in case of an injury. 

    With typically great control and an excellent cutter, Martin's future with Atlanta is bright...and sooner than you may think.

    Stock: Even

9. Juan Jaime

3 of 11

    Level: AA (Mississippi)

    Position: Reliever

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 2-3, 3.81 ERA, 1.35 WHIP, 26.0 IP, 18 H, 17 BB, 45 K

    Last Week's Stats: 0-1, 0.2 IP, 4 ER, 3 H, 2 BB, 1 K

     

    Analysis

    Unfortunately for Juan Jaime, he only garnered one appearance last week and was absolutely shelled in his two-thirds of an inning.

    However, with a right arm as powerful as his, Jaime has a good chance to see time in an injury-plagued Atlanta bullpen sometime this season–control issues or not. 

    Stock: Down

8. Todd Cunningham

4 of 11

    Level: AAA (Gwinnett)

    Position: Outfield

    Throws/Bats: R/S

    Season Stats: .275/.356/.353, 46 R, 12 2B, 3 3B, 2 HR, 27 RBI, 33 BB, 46 K, 14 SB

    Last Week's Stats: .136/.240/.136, 1 R, 2 BB, 3 K

     

    Analysis

    It was another rough week for Todd Cunningham, who relies on speed and well-placed line drives to reach base, with very little power at his disposal.

    He was due for some regression however, with how hot he had been the previous two months.

    With Jordan Schafer playing well and the Atlanta outfield stacked for the foreseeable future, Cunningham could be dealt at the deadline, seeing as the center fielder is already 24 years of age and has a firmly blocked path to the big leagues ahead of him. 

    Stock: Down

7. Matt Lipka

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    Level: High-A (Lynchburg)

    Position: Outfield

    Throws/Bats: R/R

    Season Stats: .284/.327/.416, 47 R, 19 2B, 4 3B, 5 HR, 34 RBI, 16 BB, 59 K, 19 SB

    Last Week's Stats: .278/.381/.500, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 BB, 2 K

     

    Analysis

    After collecting a home run and a double last week en route to slugging .500, it appears as if Matt Lipka is beginning to tap into some of his power (though it may be somewhat limited).

    Also encouraging is Lipka's growing walk total. Before he earns a promotion to Double-A, the Atlanta front office will want to see Lipka sustain a healthy strikeout-to-walk ratio. 

    Stock: Up

6. Mauricio Cabrera

6 of 11

    Level: Low-A (Rome)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 1-4, 4.32 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, 81.1 IP, 73 H, 44 BB, 70 K

    Last Week's Stats: 0-0, 6.1 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 4 K

     

    Analysis

    Coming off a huge week, Mauricio Cabrera continued his inconsistent season with a mediocre performance plagued by control issues.

    The good news, though, is that the hard-throwing 19-year-old has shown glimpses of the frontline starter he has the ability to develop into–a very encouraging thought considering the lack of high-upside players the Braves have in their farm system.

    Stock: Even

5. Alex Wood

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    Level: MLB

    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 (AA)

    0-2, 3.12 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 17.1 IP, 14 H, 7 BB, 22 K (Atlanta)

    Last Week's Stats: 0-0, 3.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 2 K

     

    Analysis

    Alex Wood continues to be exactly what the doctor ordered for the Atlanta bullpen–a southpaw with the ability to go multiple innings and a penchant for striking out hitters.

    As he proves himself in important situations, look for Wood's role to grow and possibly land him the gig of setting up closer Craig Kimbrel further into the pennant run.

    Stock: Up

4. Sean Gilmartin

8 of 11

    Level: AAA (Gwinnett)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Left-handed

    Season Stats: 3-7, 5.83 ERA, 1.68 WHIP, 71.0 IP, 89 H, 30 BB, 47 K 

    Last Week's Stats: No action seen.

     

    Analysis

    Not having thrown a pitch since mid-June, Sean Gilmartin continues to sit idly during a disappointing season that has seen lower-ranked prospects Alex Wood and Cody Martin jump him in the big league pecking order.

    Presented as a polished lefty with a lot of pitches in his arsenal, as well as great control, Gilmartin now finds himself needing to have a big second half to regain good standing in the Braves organization. Expect the southpaw out of Florida State to rebound well once he returns from injury.

    Stock: Even

3. Lucas Sims

9 of 11

    Level: Low-A (Rome)

    Position: Starting Pitcher

    Throws: Right-handed

    Season Stats: 4-3, 2.60 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 62.1 IP, 40 H, 24 BB, 71 K

    Last Week's Stats: 1-0, 5.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 2 BB, 6 K

     

    Analysis

    Lucas Sims joins Cabrera as the other high-upside 19-year-old starting pitcher in the Braves farm system, but he is already much further along than Cabrera when it comes to development and consistency. 

    Sims tossed another gem last week, giving up just two hits and striking out six over five innings pitched en route to a victory.

    Expect Sims to get the call for a promotion to High-A sometime in the latter portion of this season.

    Stock: Up

2. Christian Bethancourt

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    Level: AA (Mississippi)

    Position: Catcher

    Throws/Bats: R/R

    Season Stats: .258/.290/.374, 20 R, 11 2B, 4 HR, 22 RBI, 10 BB, 41 K, 7 SB

    Last Week's Stats: .200/.318/.267, 1 R, 1 2B, 3 RBI, 4 BB, 1 K

     

    Analysis

    On the surface, Christian Bethancourt's week at the plate was pretty miserable. 

    But the four walks he took give him a free pass, as his plate discipline is the limiting factor stunting his offensive growth. 

    A strong second half at the plate will go a long way in securing Bethancourt some playing time in the major leagues next season, with Brian McCann possibly walking.

    Stock: Even

1. J.R. Graham

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    Level: AA (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 K

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

     

    Analysis

    After a very durable 2012, J.R. Graham has been on the disabled list for more than half of 2013. 

    He won't be dismissed as a potential starting pitcher for Atlanta just yet though, but with the Braves bullpen hurting and the Braves rotation sporting young pitchers like Mike Minor, Kris Medlen, Julio Teheran, and Brandon Beachy, the odds are certainly against him in the short term.

    Until he returns from injury though, no decisions can be made.

    Stock: Even

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