April Phillies Prospect Roundup

What do you mean I'm easily replaceable by several minor leaguers? - Jason Miller

Well, I think we know who had good weeks, but it's time to look back and realize there's a growing forest of data to take in.

Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs

Cody Asche - Asche is basically holding his own so far in Triple-A. A .265/.330/.361 line with 1 HR, .096 ISO, a 23.4% K and 8.5% BB. The K rate is too high for a relatively light hitting corner infielder, but the walk rate is respectable enough. His BABiP is reasonable, so any rebound to be expected would have to be from Asche adjusting to the level of play, which he has done before. If this is his line September 1st, do we welcome Michael Young back on a 2 year deal this winter? Too early for that probably, but we'll need to see what improvements Asche makes in the coming months.

Leandro Castro - I've never been a big fan of Castro. He looks like a AAAA guy to me, but maybe he has enough power to be a 5th OF. Even there, he'd be better served if he could play Center consistently. The Phillies have plenty of other guys coming up in the outfield ranks, so that I don't see much future for a guy who walks less than Delmon Young.

Josh Fields - Fields is basically a break in case of emergency guy in Triple-A. If he gets called up, things have likely gone catastrophic for the Phillies on the DL. Fields is basically the classic AAAA player, really good power (.278 ISO) really bad K rate (32.2%), he will take some walks and has positional flexibility though, so he isn't totally useless. I imagine if pressed into action we'd get something between Kratz and Brandon Moss for a while before the wheels come off.

Tyson Gillies - Gillies has a 15% BB rate. And, that's the end of the good news. Gillies is reworking his swing to generate more power (read: any power whatsoever), it's a mixed bag with a barely .500 OPS thus far. Speed seems to be back though, and the walk rate is awesome. If he can get better luck on his contact (.170 BABiP), by bringing the LD rate up a bit, perhaps he could have a future in the Majors. I'm taking a wait and see approach, he's doing major reconstruction, so no red flags yet.

Cesar Hernandez - A few more Walks would be nice and a .432 BABiP is probably 60-70 points higher than he can sustain, but that's nitpicking. He has a .375/.417/.500 line, for a 23 year old, glove first middle infielder in Triple-A that's mighty good. Preseason I thought he had a shot as a backup MI in the majors. I'm not going to move from that yet, but he's only 23 and maybe this could be a breakout year and he can become an average starter. Weirder things have happened.

Tommy Joseph - The good? How about a .220 ISO and a .220 BABiP that suggests positive regression? The bad? How about everything else? Small sample size warning abound, but Jospeh's CS rate is way down from last year, his K rate is high and his walk rate is Delmonian. It's only a month, but Joseph has some work to do yet. The Avg and OPS don't bother me.

Jermaine Mitchell - Basically the outfield version of Josh Fields. If we see him things have likely gone quite badly in the OF. Still .250/.340/.477, .227 ISO, 16% K, 10% BB sounds pretty good for an emergency plan. Better than running Mini-Mart out there.

Darin Ruf - Ruf just started heating up the last week of the month. His line of .267/.319/.512, .245 ISO is good. A 25% K rate is high, but for a bench bat with power or short term injury replacement at 1st or in Left, you could do much worse.

Justin De Fratus - I haven't mentioed De Fratus yet this season (I rarely mention any relievers unless things have gone horribly wrong), but that's not because he wasn't doing well. He's a bit of a middle reliever (oddly) for the Iron Pigs with 7 K/9and 2.6 BB/9. It would be nice to see the K rate go up, but the BB rate is what you want. Sample size in only 14 innings, so big ol' grain of salt here.

Jake Diekman - An absolute disaster of a month. 11.5 BB/9, 5.7 K/9. And he had a favorable .290 BABiP against and 58% GB. On to May.

Ethan Martin - Another pitcher with some control issues. 8 BB/9, 9.3 K/9. Plenty of time to turn it around.

Adam Morgan - Morgan doesn't seem to be fooling hitters as much in Triple-A. He sports a 5.9 K/9 and a 2.6 BB/9. The control is there, at least, but he isn't get=ting enoug swings and misses. A 4.48 SIERA and a .239 BABiP against with a very low 37% GB suggests he's been very lucky to this point in the season.

Joe Savery - Savery's been lucky, but also dominant with 13 K/9, 1.9 BB/9, 63% GB, a 0.92 FIP and 1.34 SIERA. It's a really small sample size, but anytime a guy strikes out 40% of the batters he's facing, he's doing well. Also, in LHV, at least, his Splits are non-existent. Maybe he's having JC Romero's 2008, maybe it's a blip and he's due for regression, but I'd rather see him than Durbinplayruns (h/t Phrozen for that gem) and he can't do much less than Valdes has to this point.

Only Prospects from here on out. Reading Phillies (I don't care that they renamed, I reject your reality and substitute my own)

Cameron Rupp - The Captain of the Seasbrooke is suffering from a low BABiP (low CrabiP, were I stick with the Deadliest Catch pun?), but has a rather good BB rate at nearly 10%. I'm s bit bullish on Rupp, but even I see him as a future Brien Schneider type. He could be a really nice bench piece in a year or two. (admit it, you google photos of Rupp after the first sentence)

Sebastian Valle - 35% K rate, 6.7% BB rate (that's actually kinda good for Valle), .212 BABiP, .160 ISO. The Power is there, he should rebound from an awful BABiP, but make no mistake, this is a bad start. He's splitting plate time fairly evenly with Rupp and maybe, like Pat Burrell, he doesn't handle the DH role and time off well.

Jesse Biddle - 31 innings, 1.74 ERA, 2.20 FIP, 2.43 SIERA, .172 BABiP (so there's that to consider), 37.9% GB (on the low side), 11.6 K/9, 3.5 BB/9, 4.8% HR/OFB. Regression is probably coming, but the K rate is awesome, the BB rate is okay. Another month like this and LHV may be on the horizon when rosters shuffle around draft time.

Brody Colvin - Colvin missed a few starts in April and struggled when he did pitch with a 3.2 K/9 and 4 BB/9. Too little data to say much of anything. Colvin still has a good ceiling, but he's struggled more than succeeded the last few years. We'll have to see how things develop and hopefully we aren't lookin at any major injury growing here.

JC Ramirez - Excellent in relief at Reading, less so in LHV, so far. Need to see a larger sample, but if he can settle somewhere between the 2 extremes he could be a usefull reliever.

Clearwater Threshers

Aaron Altherr - I'm pretty bullish on Altherr who ends April with a .228 ISO, 6 SB, 10.6% BB rate, 0 CS. He also ends the month with a 20% K rate and a rather unsustainable .420 BABiP. Altherr's career BABiP is .100 lower, but his LD rate and OFB rate are up, so it's reasonable that his BABiP could trend up some (though not a hundred points). If the power surge is for real, then I can live with a 20% K rate and an average below .300 (but preferrably closer to .280-ish) if his BB rate is for real (and it has trended up every year he's been in the minors). Another guy who could move up when rosters get shuffled in a month and a half.

Maikel Franco - Seriously, if you live anywhere near any place the Threshers play, go see them. This is a very good offense. Franco especially, Dig this line, which he has somewhat quietly assembled without huge weeks, but with consistently very solid ones. .292/.342/.547, 5 HR, .255 ISO, 14.9% K, 6.1% BB, .310 BABiP (so it's not all luck). I don't know how long Franco will be a Third baseman, there have been rumblings he may grow into a First baseman (be a damned shame to waste his arm there), but until he can't hack it anymore he's someone to be excited about. Once again, could see Reading before the summer heat really sets in.

Cameron Perkins - Kind of a fringy prospect without a position, he doesn't walk enough, but he doesn't K very often and does sport a .202 ISO, seems to be a solid enough contact hitter.

Percy Garner - Look Percy Garner had a few kind of awful starts this month, but on the macro level, his month looks pretty good. 8.36 K/9, 3.86 BB/9, 53 % GB rate, 2.57 ERA, 3.52 FIP, 3.71 SIERA. All of those are improvements over last year. It would be great if he was more consistent, but those numbers are solid.

Hoby Milner - Hoby's ERA looks awful (6.97), but he's had bad luck, as evidenced by a 4.46 FIP, 3.23 SIERA, 9.6 K/9, 2.6 BB/9, .418 BABiP against, and a cray cray 22.2% HR/OFB. I expect he'll regress, but he's probably a back end starter or bullpen guy as a ceiling. He could get there fairly quick though.

Lakewood Blueclaws

Art Charles - This is the guy Schwimer got us. I may have undersold this trade. Check it out: .226 ISO, 4 HR, .333 BABiP, 22.7% K, 10.3% BB, .286/.361/.512. Send this young man to Clearwater.

Chace Numata - .268/.300/.357. .089 ISO, 18.3% K, 5% BB, .326 BABiP. Defense needs some work. Somewhat crowded position, he could get squeezed out by Lino, Rupp, Ludy, etc.

Brian Pointer - Pointer has some work to do. He's repeating the level, so I would expect his line to be better. Still, a low BABiP, suggest it may get better. Still K rate and BB rate are out of whack.

Roman "Candle" Quinn - The candle is currently in the freezer. Sporting a .202/.253/.303 line with .101 ISO, .262 BABiP, 27.1% K rate, 4.2% BB rate, 10 SB, 1 CS. Speed is great, but not if you can't get on base. Also, if you're going to strike out 27% of the time you better be hitting 30-40 homers a year. Big shift down from last year. Hopefully it's an adjustment issue, Roman's BB rate is half what it was last summer, his K rate is way up (even last year it was a little high). It's early, so don't panic.

Carlos Tocci - A two level jump was very aggressive and to say Tocci is young for the level would be almost like saying Doogie Howser was young for Medical school. Everything is down from last year, but if you adjust his BABiP to a more reasonable level, the numbers would look nearly identical. Tocci's one red flag for me is the low walk rate, small sample, but it would be better if it were to double the next few years.

Mitch Walding - Not enough power for Third, but a .277/.348/.373 line is respectable enough. His BABiP isn't crazy high, so most of that line is sustainable. A near 10% BB rate is a good sign. Nothing to get hugely excited about, but it's a perfectly good start.

Kevin Brady - 8.87 K/9, 5.24 BB/9. That walk rate sucks, but everything else in his line is good enough (though the K rate is down a bit). His FIP is 3.69, so if his ERA were to regress everything might look better, but you can't walk 5 guys per nine and get very far for very long, so that needs to change dramatically.

Yoel Mecias - See comment above. Almost exactly the same issue with a 8.8 K/9, 5.7 BB/9. There is a nice 57% GB rate that would be nice if sustained. Yoel's only 19, so he's got plenty of time to get his control in order.

Shane Watson - Different issue here with a 6.1 K/9 and 2.2 BB rate control is less of an issue, but the K's need to come up. Shane's been the victim of a insane 23% HR/OFB (normal is less than half that). A .236 BABiP suggests he's been otherwise lucky. Watson can pitch, so we'll have to wait and see how he adjusts to full season ball.

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