Player notes from Class A Advanced and A Ball—from the slumping bat of Derek Norris to the seasoned arm of Randall Delgado.
Marc Krauss, OF Arizona Advanced A Line—.326 BA, 17 HR, 66 RBI
The former Ohio University standout has been on an offensive tear. In 24 games since the minor league all star break he's batting .423 (44 for 104) with 20 runs, 10 HR and 28 RBI.
He's raised his batting average 39 points in that stretch. However, as his batting average continues to rise, his walks are on a steep decline.
Since June 1st, his BB:K ratio is an ugly 11:42. Krauss is hitting .330 with RISP and .339 in 121 AB against LHP. Rated amongst the top prospects in the Diamondbacks organization, his bat is not far off. A lack of agility in the outfield could hold him back.
Francisco Peguero, OF San Francisco Advanced A Line—.300 BA, 4 HR, 46 RBI
The 22-year old Peguero was selected to play in the Futures Game during All Star Weekend where he went 1 for 2 at the plate.
He's followed up a strong 2009 campaign (.353 between NOR & SAL) with an impressive 2010 in the CAL. In his fifth minor league season he's already matched his high-water mark for RBI in a season with 46 and shattered his previous highs in triples (11) and stolen bases (33).
Peguero is not exactly a picture of patience at the plate, drawing just eight walks in '09 and 12 walks in 77 games in '10. He's batting .359 in 92 AB since the break with 15 RBI. He can rake and he can run, but the question is, can he get on base enough to be top of the order fixture?
Derek Norris, C Washington Advanced A Line—.230 BA, 5 HR, 26 RBI
After batting .317 in May, Norris' average has taken a monumental nosedive. He hit .220 in June, and through 14 games in July is hitting a putrid .175.
Worse yet, the power he displayed in 2009 in the SAL with 23 HR and 30 doubles has disappeared. He's slugging .370 with five HR and eight doubles in 2010. However, as disconcerting as those figures may be, he's maintained his tremendous batting eye and plate discipline.
Norris has drawn 47 BB against 46 K, and, amazingly, is sporting a .407 OBP. With his refined approach it's hard to imagine that this is more than a blip on the radar—but his fast track progress will be a little halted.
Nick Franklin, SS Seattle A Ball Line—.289 BA, 17 HR, 43 RBI
In his first full season of pro ball, Franklin is showing the full repertoire. Not projected as a power stick, the switch-hitting shortstop is slugging .528 with 36 extra base hits.
He's also flashing his speed with six triples and 18 stolen bases. Not too shabby for a player whom scouts describe as "lacking tools."
He accepted just two free passes in 63 AB between the Rookie League and NOR in '09, but his OBP is improving. He's already drawn eight walks in 13 July games, matching his high for any month.
The Mariners have two other top prospects at SS (Gabriel Noriega and Carlos Triunfel), which means a move to 2B could be in the cards.
Henry Rodriguez, 2B Cincinnati A Ball Line—.288 BA, 9 HR, 55 RBI
Weighing in at 160 pounds, Rodriguez has compiled five HR and 69 RBI in three prior minor league seasons. Through 86 games in 2010, he's already jacked nine bombs and driven in 55 runs.
He's also ripped 28 doubles, obliterating his previous career high of 14. This upgrade in pop has really come from out of nowhere.
The switch-hitting Rodriguez is definitely more comfortable from the left side, hitting .305 with seven HR, 23 doubles and 42 RBI. He's batting .233 from the right side, but has struck out only five times in 86 AB.
Rodriguez has swiped 17 bags in 23 attempts. Only 20 years of age, he could make for a very interesting fantasy package as he continues to develop.
Randall Delgado, RH SP Atlanta Advanced A Line—4-6, 2.85 ERA, 111 K
What do you know? Another young arm in the lower ranks of the Braves system. In his fourth minor league season, Delgado is a polished 20.
He's surrendered 85 knocks in 110 1/3 innings with opposing batters hitting a meager .213 against him. Right-handed hitters are below the Mendoza line at .198.
His command has been sharp, issuing only 31 BB. Even in the face of massive strikeout numbers (second in the CAL), he continues to get ground balls at a proficient rate with a 1.41 GO/AO.
Delgado features a sinking fastball in the low 90's, a "now you see it, now you don't" change-up, and 12-6 curveball. Somewhat limited ceiling, but on the fast track.
Brad Hand, LH SP Florida Advanced A Line—5-5, 3.19 ERA, 97 K
Hand has gone through phases of absolute domination this season. He's thrown two complete game shutouts and posted a 1.14 ERA in five June starts.
But since his other 11 games started, he's been touched up a bit. He's allowed 101 hits in 98 2/3 innings with lefties hitting a too comfortable .258 against him.
Command has been a bugaboo at lower levels, and that continues to be the case in the FSL where he's walked 34 batters. His fastball is not overpowering (sits at 93) but he has a live arm and sneaky gas up in the zone. Hand's secondary offerings need work.
Nick Barnese, RH SP Tampa Bay Advanced A Line — 7-4, 2.83 ERA, 87 K
Barnese has been one tough cookie to square up. In 74 2/3 innings in the SAL last season he allowed just 56 hits, and in 98 2/3 innings this season he's allowed 91 base knocks.
Left handed hitters are batting .206 against him. He's been nearly impossible to take out of the park, yielding a ludicrous seven HR in 275 2/3 minor league innings. His GO/AO ratios have been stellar (2.09, 1.32, 1.44, 1.27) but he's still giving up his fair share of fly outs—just not with authority.
His control has been excellent, issuing just 20 walks (under two per nine innings). His out pitch is a slurve with good late break. From all accounts, Barnese is a bulldog on the mound.
Jarred Cosart, RH SP Philadelphia A Ball Line—7-3, 3.79 ERA, 77 K
He's a 38th round pick in the 2008 amateur draft out of high school as a two-way player. Cosart has been downright filthy on the mound. In 71 1/3 innings he's allowed only 60 hits and struck out 77.
He's holding opposing hitters to a .224 BA. He's been a ground ball machine with a 1.93 GO/AO ratio and a staggering 6.25 ratio against left handed hitters. He's exhibited terrific command of the strike zone, walking just 16.
As you can see, it's difficult to find a weakness in the stats— so how is his ERA 3.79? Quite simply, he hasn't learned how to work his way out of trouble. The opposition is hitting .314 against him with RISP.
His curveball and change-up are well-seasoned offerings to go along with a low 90's heater. Cosart is currently on the DL with an elbow strain.
Matt Hobgood, RH SP Baltimore A Ball Line—3-7, 4.68 ERA, 48 K
The number five overall selection in the 2009 draft, Hobgood is an absolute ox at 6'4'' 245 pounds. He throws a four-seam fastball that boars in on right handed hitters and a two-seamer that runs away from left handed hitters.
His 2.00 GO/AO ratio is very encouraging. He's given up 72 hits in 75 innings and only five long balls. With that said, his control has been shaky with 34 walks, and he doesn't miss bats (48 K).
His curveball is touted as a devastating breaker, but hasn't acted as one, yet. Before O's fans hit the panic switch, he won't turn 20 until August.
Notable Promotions to AA:
Eric Hosmer 1B-KC, Drew Cumberland SS-SD, Alexi Amarista 2B-LAA, J.D. Martinez OF-HOU, Michael Main SP-SF, Chris Dwyer SP-KC, Chris Archer SP-CHC.
...And the Whiff:
Everett Williams (SD) and Max Stassi (OAK) are on earth shattering strikeout paces in the Midwest League. Williams has K'd 94 times in 65 games (253 AB) and Stassi 98 times in 73 games (282 AB).
Article by Adam Ganeles exclusively for TheFantasyFix.com. Check back weekly for Adam's excellent fantasy insight and analysis.
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