We'll get to Franco shortly, but these updates could start getting quite long with Shortseason ball starting and a flood of new draftees to discuss. With Jaypoozle coming in and doing a great job with daily recaps I'll probably start discussing Starting Pitchers a little less, unless they had 2 start weeks or were particularly phenomenal. I was away last week in the tropics (though I still caught nearly every inning of the Collge World Series), so this will be a two week recap.
Maikel Franco - Maikel Franco has gone plaid. Since being promoted to Reading last week Franco has hit to a .471/.500/.941 tune with 2 HR, a 0% K rate and 5.6% BB rate. Clearly the walk rate is a problem (I'm kidding, it's 4 games worth of data. I don't expect he'll maintain the 0% K rate, .470 ISO or .400 BABiP either). Looking at his numbers across both levels he went .432/.476/.973 with 4 BB, 2 K, 1 triple, and a ridiculous 6 HR. That's a downright Barry Bonds early 2000's line. How long will his current hot streak last? A week seems realistic, though going another weekwith a jump to a much more advanced level would be a phenomenal accomplishment. I can't imagine many prospect followers would not have Franco as the Phillies top position prospect at this point. He's simply been too good to this point not to move well up rankings. The question is now whether he's simply our best overall prospect. The only thing holding me back is Biddle's more established success at the Double-A level, but if Franco can put up a line similar to his Clearwater line the rest of the way, then Biddle will have to turn into Dylan Bundy to stay on top for me. I'm a Franco-phile, but even I don't think he can maintain anything close to a .470 ISO, but anything in the ballpark of his work in Clearwater might make him a top 50 or better prospect by the Fall.
Zach Green - Speaking of hot Third Base prospects... the Short season New York Penn League (NYPL) got underway during the last two weeks as well and 2012 Third Round Draft Pick Zach Green is off to one hell of a start. For those unfamiliar with the NYPL, it is a strong Pitchers league and Offensive players typically struggle more and the league (especially the Crosscutters home park) supresses Home Runs. So what did Green do? He went .321/.387/.821 with 11 K, 3 BB, 5 doubles, 1 SB (0 CS) and 3 HR. One of those 3 HR was in the cavernous home park for Williamsport.The one cold spot is that Green is off to a rough start in the field where he has 3 errors in 7 games. Green's new to playing Third, so the growing pains can be expected. Just keep in mind that no matter how hot his bat may stay his glove may hold him back some from promotion, as he needs to focus on his defense and likely doesn't need a challenge at the plate this year beyond what he's getting already in the NYPL (of course if he starts fielding well, this becomes a moot point).
William Carmona - Carmona had a rather solid, BABiP fueled couple of weeks, going .457/.500/.629 with 8 K, 4 BB, 3 doubles and 1 HR.
Kelly Dugan - Personally, I think Dugan's about ready for a promotion to Reading as well. Last week's .281/.465/.406 line with 1 doubles, 1 HR, 7 K, a crazy 8 BB and 3 HBP was enough to get his season numbers to a .216 ISO, a 22.1% K rate and 10.3% BB rate. The BB rate is in line with his previous numbers, as is the K rate. The ISO is up, but it would not be unusual for a 22 year old to start tapping into his power more. Some may point to his .408 BABiP as unsustainable, but it's important to keep in mind that while probably a little too high, Dugan is also a very strong line drive hitter ( nearly 25% of his contact are Line Drives). Line drives have a naturally higher BABiP than other contact (unless you whack a LD roughly straight at a fielder, it's probably going to fall in). I could see Dugan maintaining something around a .360-.380 BABiP. If he can do that with a .200+ ISO, he'll become more than a future reserve outfielder. He still has a way to go, but the improved power and LD rates are very promising.
Carlos Duran - Duran is a 6'2" 170 lb CF/3B. It's his second year in the VSL and he's performing much better so far. Last week especially he went .375/.459/.656 with 1 double, 1 triple, 2 HR, 5 K, 4 BB and 1 HBP.
Larry Greene - Fudgie started swinging the last few weeks. While it did no favors to his walk or K rates (14 K and 2 BBs in 43 PA), it did help his overall line as he went .300/.326/.425 with 2 doubles and 1 HR (his first on the year).
Gabriel Lino - Lino's calling card is his power, his weakness is passed balls. He's starting back a level this summer, though he's age appropriate for the NYPL. He went .333/.379/.481 with 9 K, 1 BB, 1 HBP and 1 HR. That's a lotta K's for 30 PA, but it's also only 30 PA. He also had his first PB of the year.
Justin Parr - Parr was the Phillies 8th Round pick in this year's draft. He was a College Senior and signed quickly for, quite literally, just a few thousand dollars. He got off to a mighty fine start, and for at least this week I'll avoid bad golf jokes. He started off .333/.417/.381, 1 double, 2 SB, 4 K, 3 BB and a Valdezian 4 DP hit into.
Logan Pierce - The 15th Round pick this year went from ruling Troy to dominating the NYPL. Going .300/.364/.500, 1 doubles, 1 HR, 4 K and 2 BB with 1 SB in 22 PA.
Darin Ruf - .333/.407/.489 with 2 HR, 16 K, 7 BB and for some reason 1 CS. With all the injuries he's bound to get called up at some point, isn't he?
Chris Serritella - .394/.444/.545 with 5 K, 3 BB, 2 doubles, 1 HR in 36 PA. Glad to see the walks in addition to the power.
Steve Susdorf - I doubt Susdorf will ever get promoted, though I think he'd be decent enough as a bench bat. Susdorf got his first HR of the season along with a .385/.469/.538 line with 4 K, 3 BB and 2 HBP. People will point to his high BABiP, but it's worth noting that very few guys have better LD rates than Susdorf's 27.4% and his career BABiP is well above what most players maintain, his current .379 BABiP may only be a few points higher than he can maintain. Susdorf's drawbacks are that he's a subpar fielder and has only slightly more power than Ben Revere, sans Revere's plus-plus speed.
Carlos Tocci - Well, Short Season leagues have started and Tocci is still in Lakewood. In a vacuum that's pretty impressive for a 17 year old. Obviously, the Phillies brass have been impressed enough with his play in the SALLY where, as the youngest player in the league, he has posted solid numbers, to keep him there for the duration. If he can keep up his play the last 2 weeks, he'll make the team look quite smart for keeping him there. He went .296/.394/.370 with 2 doubles, 4 K, 3 BB, 2 HBP and 2 CS the last 2 weeks.
Sebastian Valle - Valle is thriving with more playing time going .293/.310/.463, 1 double, 2 HR, 8 K, 1 BB in 43 PA. I still wish he'd draw more walks, but I also wish I was 7'3" with a killer skyhook and Brad Pitt's looks. Sometimes you work with the hand you're dealt and if Valle can maintain the power and any kind of average close to .260-ish he'll be a pretty decent backstop.
Mitch Gueller - Gueller made 2 starts for Williamsport going 10.0 IP, 6 H, 8 K, 3 BB, 1 HR, 2 ER. Those are very respectable numbers in a league Mitch is age appropriate for. Nice way to start the year.
Yoel Mecias - Honestly, I wasn't sure where to list Mecias, as he had 2 short appearances with a lot of pitches. They were pretty damned effective pitches though as he went 2 S, 8.2 IP, 6 H, 15 K, 3 BB, 3 ER.
Notable cold players:
Roman Quinn - Good and bad here as Quinn went .159/.208/.182, 8 K, 3 BB, 3 SB (1 CS) in 48 PA. He also this last 2 weeks surpased last seasn's Error total with ~50 fewer chances
Tommy Joseph - Remember him? Joseph got a concussion in early May and has been mostly on the DL since. He came back 3 weeks ago to Clearwater and played a handfull of games before symptoms reappeared. He then sat the last week and a half and played for the GCL Phillies over the weekend. Don't read anything into any of this as demotions. The Phillies' concussion specialists and largest training staff are in Clearwater and Tommy may well bounce back and forth between the 2 clubs some until he's fully healthy again. Frankly, there's a Catcher logjam in the GCL team, so once he actually Catches, as oppossed to DH's he's likely to do that in High-A. Stats aren't worth rehashing, as it's only 2 games.
Chace Numata - Numata went .179/.250/.250, 2 doubles, 6 K, 3 HBP in 32 PA.
Brian Pointer - .194/.366/.258, 2 doubles, 7 K, 6 BB, 3 HBP, 1 SB (2 CS) in 41 PA.
Cameron Rupp - Rupp has struggled since being promoted to Triple-A. He went .222/.243/.278 with 2 doubles, 10 K and 1 BB in 37 PA. I expect he'll adjust as he stays there. Probably to something close to his Reading numbers.
Brody Colvin - 2 appearances, 7.2 IP, 8 H, 6 K, 6 BB, 2 HBP, 1 HR, 8 ER. Well, at least there were 6 K's. Lemonade.
Ethan Martin - 2 Starts, 12.0 IP, 8 H, 9 K (good), 7 BB (bad), 2 HR, 5 ER. Really need to get the walks under control.
Hoby Milner - Well you can't be on the hot list forever. 2 Starts, 12.0 IP, 9 H, 7 K, 3 BB, 1 HBP, 8 ER.
Mauricio Robles - 5.2 IP, 6 H, 1 K, 5 BB, 3 ER. Robles has the stuff, but no one can ever know where it's going, including Robles.
Ethan Stewart - Ugly line: 2 Starts, 6.2 IP, 6 H, 11 BB (!!!), 3 K, 10 ER.
Everyone else of note:
Aaron Altherr - .219/.342/.438, 2 HR, 16 K, 5 BB, 1 HBP in 38 PA. Were it not for the 2 HR, I'd have put him on the cold list. It's also worth noting his K rate is now going quite solidly in a very bad direction, breaking 30% on the season this week. That needs to come way down, by about 10% points to ~20-ish.
Cody Asche - .261/.333/.435, 2 doubles, 2 HR, 13 K, 4 BB, 1 HBP, 2 SB (0 CS) in 51 PA.
Dylan Cozens - .150/.346/.150, 4 K, 6 BB, 4 SB (1 CS) in 26 PA. Not the line I'd expect from Cozens.
Tyson Gillies - .250/.325/.417, 1 double, 1 triple, 1 HR, 10 K, 4 BB, 1 SB (1 CS). More power and speed, though at this point I have no idea what to make of him.
Cesar Hernandez - .256/.333/.349, 2 doubles, 1 triple, 15 K, 5 BB, 6 SB (1 CS). That's a helluva lot of K's in 48 PA. Still, an overall decent line for the young Second Baseman.
Anthony Hewitt - Speaking of prospects I don't know what to make of, the Phillies former Top pick had a .195/.283/.512 line with a great 4 HR. Add on to that a respecatble 9 K and 5 BB in 46 PA with 3 SB (1 CS). Hewitt's on the old side for AA, He's still a work in progres in many areas. Frankly, he may always be a work in progress, but at least now there's actual progres in that work. Perhaps he still has hope as a reserve OF in a few years. Crazier things have happened.
Andrew Knapp - The Phillies 2nd rounder this year went .263/.348/.368, 2 doubles, 7 K, 2 BB, 1 HBP in 23 PA for Williamsport.
Jesse Biddle - 2 Starts, 11.0 IP, 11 H, 12 K (Excellent), 9 BB (certainly not ideal), 2 HR, 6 ER. 20 baserunners and 2 HR in 11 Innings, 6 ER seems pretty fortunate there.
Seth Rosin - 3 Starts, 18.0 IP, 12 H, 14 K, 7 BB, 1 HBP, 1 HR, 6 ER.