Around the Farm: July 9
By Jim Pete
July 10, 2011
Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday's performances by Indians prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday's game.
Ezequiel Carrera: RF, Columbus: 3-4, 2 R: Carrera continues to make a case for a call-up with his outstanding offense so far this season. Considering many consider him the best outfielder in the organization, you do have to wonder when he'll replace some of the fodder in the Indians current outfield. No, he's not the power bat that the Indians necessarily need, but he certainly can be a spark to an offense that desperately needs it. Carrerra is 7-18, with five runs scored in his last five games, and he's hitting .300 with a .417 OBP and eight stolen bases in his last ten games.
- Jason Donald: SS, Columbus: 2-4: Donald certainly wasn't mashing the ball on Saturday night, but it is extremely interesting that he's hitting 4-8 in the two games since Luis Valbuena was called up. Perhaps it lit a fire under his butt, consider many thought he was the better defensive fit.
- David Huff: SP, Columbus: 6 IP, 5 H, 1 R/ER, 3 BB, 5 K: Huff pitched well, and although the three walks looks like he struggled with control, he just wasn't getting the calls. Huff left the game with the lead, but when Carrera and Donald were the only two players with hits of any kind last night, Columbus squandered the lead thanks to horrid relief pitching and even worse offense.
- Carlton Smith: RP, Columbus: 2/3 IP, 3 H, 2 R/ER, 1 BB, L (2-2): When the games not on the line, Smith has looked extremely good. But there's not middle ground for the right-hander, and you can't have that WHEN the game was on the line last night. His ERA over the past ten is 5.56...just not good enough.
- Zach Putnam: RP, Columbus: 1 1/3 IP, 2 H, 2 R/ER, 1 K: At one point this season, Putnam was a lock to join the Tribe's bullpen mafia. Now, there's absolutely no chance of it happening this year. In Putnam's last two games, he's gone a combined 2 2/3 innings, giving up six hits and five earned runs, while walking four and striking out four. In his past ten, he's given up runs in five of those games, and multiple runs in three. His overall ERA rose to 3.74, but in his last ten games it's nearly double that at 6.75.
- Juan Diaz: SS, Akron: 1-5, 2 R, 1 2B: Okay, 1-5 isn't really noteworthy, but his double in the sixth inning of last night game started the big six-run rally that gave the Aeros the victory. The hit also continued his six game hit streak, and while he's not shredding at the plate, he's teetering on figuring things out. I still say this kid, when it's all said and done, will be a solid major league contributor somewhere.
- Beau Mills: 1B, Akron: 1-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K: While Mills only recorded one hit, it was a big one. According to reports, including our very own Tony Lastoria who was at the game, the homer was a towering shot that cleared the bleachers. One hit is one thing, but one hit that exhibits a massive amount of power is another. This is a fantastic sign that Mills is on the trail back. It was his sixth blast of the season.
- Chun Chen: C, Akron: 2-4, 1 H, 1 RBI, 1 K: Chen continues to showcase an outstanding bat, raising his average to .280 for the season. He has hits in four of his last five games since his return from the DL. The Indians' management has really been safeguarding his health, pulling him out of his last few starts late in the game.
- Nick Weglarz: LF, Akron: 2-3, 1R, 1 BB: Weglarz just hasn't been around ATF much this year for anything positive. In 26 games since returning from injury, the big outfielder has hit only two homers. While his OBP is an incredible .429 during that span, his sole purpose isn't to walk a whole bunch. He needs to start hitting, and hitting with power. Perhaps he should have some lunch with Beau Mills.
- Ben Copeland: RF, Akron: 2-4, 1 R, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 1 K: Copeland sure does know how to fill a stat line, as he did last night. While he's cooled off since joining the organization from independent ball, he's still throwing out these big games. He's just roster-fill, but boy, if he keeps rolling out games like this, you have to wonder if he just might stick.
- T.J. McFarland: SP, Akron: 5 IP, 5 H, 4 R/ER, 3 BB, 5 K: A bit of a setback for the left-hander, who was last week's Eastern League pitcher of the week. Still, all the damage was done to McFarland in the 2nd inning, and he fought through it to keep the Aeros in the game. He really is returning to form, and last night's game actually proved it.
- Tyler Sturdevant: RP, Akron: 2 IP, 1 H, 2 K, W (2-1): On July 1, Sturdevant was rocked in his third outing with Akron. Past that, he's been absolutely awesome. In his other four games at Double A, he's gone seven innings, giving up only five hits and two walks, while striking out seven. This kid has an incredibly live arm, and could be a factor next season.
- Adam Miller: RP, Akron: 2 IP, 2 H, 2 R/ER, 1 BB: This was a rather small hiccup in Miller's feel good story of 2011. Miller hadn't given up a run in his previous nine games, and while you don't like to see a game like last nights', it certainly isn't a pattern. It's just a reminder that Miller's actually human, and is still on the path to consistency.
- Adam Abraham: 3B, Kinston: 1-4, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K: Mr. Abraham has arrived, and the power keeps showing up. The third baseman hit his second homer in as many nights, as he continues to move up the prospect ladder. His ten game stat line is .313/.436/.594.
- Anthony Gallas: LF, Kinston: 1-5, 1 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI: Gallas rocked one, but is still struggling in his foray into High A. I suspect that Gallas, unless he catches fire, will find himself back in Kinston to start next season off. He's only batting .169 since the call-up.
- Abner Abreu: RF, Kinston: 1-5, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 K: He still strikes out way too much, but Abreu also hit his second homer in two nights. Might he have regained his power stroke?
- Argenis Martinez: 2B, Kinston: 2-4, 1 R: I saw Martinez for the first time live on Friday night, and there is a lot to like about the way this kid plays. I hate cliche's, but he's got a motor that never stops, and was covered from head to toe in infield dirt during most of the doubleheader. The kid is a slick fielder, and he's got some offense to go with it.
- Steven Wright: SP, Kinston: 4 IP, 10 H, 10 R/6 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 4 HR: Well, after eight brilliant innings in relief last week, I made the comment that Wright passed his High A test. So much for that. While all the numbers stink, the scary number is that he gave up four homers. Granted, some days knuckleball just doesn't dance.
- Francisco Jimenez: RP, Kinston: 2 IP, 2 H, 3 K: Jimenez has been spectacular since the all-star break ended. He hadn't made an appearance since July 1, but continued that trend with another fantastic outing.
- Rob Bryson: RP, Kinston: 1 IP, 2 K: This is more like it from Bryson, who reverted back to his lock-down form after giving up his first run of his High A season on July 6th. Bryson may not be long for Kinston, and I wouldn't be surprised if he moves up after the Double A break.
- Carlos Moncrief: RF, Lake County: 2-5, 1 R, 1 3B, 2 K: Moncrief is stuck in a 7-37 slump even after last night's game. His numbers need to continue to improve, or his viability as a prospect (he's never hit over .250 in his career) will start to be questioned.
- Alex Monsalve: C, Lake County: 3-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K: Monsalve continues to impress with another three-hit performance, raising his overall average to .279. At 19-years-old, he has a long way to go, but what start. His ten game stat line is .333/385/.528.
- Jesus Aguilar: 1B, Lake County: 2-4, 1 BB, 2 K: Aguilar had gone 0-10 in his last three games, but regained his form last night with a couple of hits. He's still batting .285 on the year, and .314 over his past ten. I have a feeling that Aguilar's name will come up should the Indians start thinking about wheeling and dealing. He's a big kid with a ton of promise, and I'm sure opposing scouts have their eyes on him.
- Giovanny Urshela: 3B, Lake County: 2-5, 2 R, 1 2B: Urshela is only batting .232 for the season, but has five multi-hit games in his last ten.
- Bryce Stowell: RP, Lake County: 1 1/3 IP, 1 BB, 3 K: Stowell's big arm continued to make strides after rebounding from a poor outing on the fifth. He's still one of the top relieving prospects in the organization, with Rob Bryson.
- Tony Wolters: SS, Mahoning Valley: 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI: Wolters has really been showing off a hot bat thusfar in the Scrappers season. In his last eight games, he's gone 11-32, with five runs, two doubles, a homer and four RBI. He's walked four times and struck out six, showing some decent plate discipline as well. He's only 19, but it's clear that he has advanced offensive skills for his age.
- Danny Jimenez: SP, Mahoning Valley: 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R/ER, 3 BB, 1 K, W (1-0): The 2009 23rd round pick is making his first journey to Mahoning Valley an impressive one. While last night was his first win, he's only given up one earned run this season, and it was in his first outing of the season. Since then, he's gone 17 scoreless innings in both the starting and relieving roles. He does have a tendency to struggle with control, but he has plenty of time to fix that.
Follow Tony and the Indians Prospect Insider on Twitter @TonyIPI. Also, his latest book the 2011 Cleveland Indians Top 100 Prospects & More is available for purchase for $20.95 to customers in the US (shipping and handling extra).
Jim is currently the co-site editor, the ATF/Carolina Mudcats/Indians/General Site Columnist, and the co-host of IPI's weekly online radio show, Smoke Signals. You can follow Jim on Twitter @Jim_IPI, or contact him via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.