Around the Farm: May 21, 2014
Paulino's transition to the outfield, Naquin's continued hot streak highlight night on the farm
Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Cleveland prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.
Note that Columbus was off Wednesday.
Dorssys Paulino (LF, Lake County): 3-for-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 CS
It has been so far, so good on Paulino's transition to the outfield as the 19-year-old has hits in all three games since returning to Lake County. Time will tell how Paulino takes to the outfield and whether his defense ends up below-average, above-average, or perfectly average, but that hardly matters right now. Paulino will need reps to become good in the outfield, but the most important thing is to see him hitting again. The bat has always been the thing that made Paulino stand out, which is why the struggles at the plate were the real issue that necessitated the position change. Taking Paulino off of shortstop and moving him to an easier position on defense could free up the 19-year-old's bat. Three games is not enough to say that has happened for sure, but there is no denying the early returns are encouraging.
Tyler Naquin (CF, Akron): 2-for-5, 1 R, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1 SO
Naquin's big day pushed his season line to .286/.342/.405, though that line still comes with the sustainability caveats that have been plaguing the outfielder so far this season (44 strikeouts in 42 games, .368 BABIP). The outfielder has a strong line-drive swing that will help him post great BABIPs, but expecting it to stay this high is a little too much. The outfielder is working on not being late to the ball -- as you can read about in Tuesday's edition of Coach's Corner, featuring Akron RubberDucks manager Dave Wallace -- something he started working on a few weeks into the season that could help Naquin cut down on those strikeouts. Removing Naquin's rough first two weeks of the season shows the outfielder's improvement, but while his .544 OPS has increased to .747, it also comes with a .380 BABIP and 27 strikeouts in 29 games. Naquin's 2014 is very encouraging and he can be a good major leaguer, but it is important to realize there are still adjustments and improvements for the outfielder to make to reach that ceiling.
- Joseph Colon (SP, Akron): W (3-2), 5.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 SO. Strikeouts have been hard for Colon to come by in 2014, but the right-hander set a new season-high with seven on Wednesday. Days like this will help Colon improve the 36:22 SO:BB he owns in 49.2 innings.
- Tyler Sturdevant (RP, Akron): S (5), 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 SO. Sturdevant is not a major league option right now after missing all of last year, but if he keeps up the 21:5 SO:BB and 1.31 ERA he has through 20.2 innings, the 28-year-old will soon change that.
- Bryson Myles (LF, Akron): 2-for-4, 2 2B, 1 RBI. A .376 BABIP is doing some work in holding up Myles' .292/.368/.445 line on the season, but the outfielder's .153 isolated power and strong on-base skills are encouraging in his first exposure to Double-A.
- Ronny Rodriguez (DH, Akron): 2-for-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 SO. The power has returned for Rodriguez in the month of May (.253 isolated power in 18 games), and while his on-base percentage is still a paltry .268 on the month, that is largely influenced by a .254 BABIP. Rodriguez is on the way back, though it has not all clicked yet.
- Francisco Lindor (SS, Akron): 1-for-3, 1 R, 2 BB, 1 SO. Nothing about Lindor's peripherals scream that his first 42 games in 2014 are due for some regression (.331 BABIP, .142 isolated power, 29:21 SO:BB) as the shortstop owns a legitimate .290/.373/.432 line to pair with his plus defense. Just your daily reminder of how special Lindor is and that he will be in the major leagues for a long time.
- Michael Peoples (SP, Carolina, Game 1): L (2-4), 1.0 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO, 2 WP. Peoples had been spending a fair amount of the season walking the tightrope and finally fell off here. The good news for the right-hander is that while his ERA sits at 6.48, his FIP is a much nicer 4.07 through 33.1 innings.
- Jacob Lee (RP, Carolina, Game 1): 4.0 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 SO. You obviously cannot pick and choose which outings count, but if you take out Lee's six-run appearance on May 8, the right-hander's ERA goes from 4.39 to 2.63. Just another example of how much one bad outing can color a reliever's season statistics.
- Grant Sides (RP, Carolina, Game 1): 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 0 SO, 1 WP, 1 HBP. Everybody gets one. This was Sides' first time allowing a run since April 27 and only his second time overall this season. The right-hander still owns a 1.59 ERA and 14:6 SO:BB in 17.0 innings on the season.
- LeVon Washington (LF, Carolina, Game 1): 3-for-4, 1 R, 1 3B, 1 RBI. Another electric outing pushes Washington's OPS to .985 in 12 games this season as the outfielder looks to reestablish himself after missing a little more than a month with an oblique injury.
- Jeremy Lucas (1B, Carolina, Game 1): 2-for-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB. There is just no stopping Lucas. With a .184 isolated power, a .359 on-base percentage, and 24:21 SO:BB in 39 games, Lucas is living up to his scouting report and simply hitting the ball.
- Anthony Gallas (DH, Carolina, Game 1): 1-for-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 SO. Gallas has cooled a little bit of late, but the 26-year-old is still showing some nice power (.230 isolated power in 41 games) as he keeps the pressure on the Akron outfielders.
- Luigi Rodriguez (RF, Carolina, Game 1): 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 SO, 1 SB. Rodriguez is still looking for some consistency 23 games into his season as the talented outfielder is yet to put it all together at the plate after missing so much time (.205/.302/.325 line, 21:12 SO:BB).
- Clayton Cook (SP, Carolina, Game 2): ND, 5.2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 SO, 1 BK. Making his season debut after missing all of 2013 and most of 2012 (his last game before this was on April 17, 2012), Cook put together a very solid outing. It is great to see the right-hander back out there after such a long recovery road.
- Louis Head (RP, Carolina, Game 2): BS (1), L (0-2), 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 SO. Cook had put the Mudcats in a position to get the win, but a rare blowup from Head sealed Carolina being on the wrong end of a doubleheader sweep. These were the first runs allowed by Head since April 14 and the right-hander still owns a 28:6 SO:BB in 16.2 innings.
- Logan Vick (CF, Carolina, Game 2): 1-for-3, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 SO, 1 SB. Vick's BABIP regression continues to come along slowly, as the outfielder's mark is now at .247. That regression has helped Vick's line increase (.190/.340/.284 in 35 games), though he still has some way to go.
- James Roberts (3B, Carolina, Game 2): 1-for-2, 1 R, 1 BB. Roberts continues to get hits and get on-base with this single and walk (.397 on-base percentage in 39 games), though his three extra base hits and .025 isolated power on the year continue to be a concern.
- Yhoxian Medina (SS, Carolina, Game 2): 1-for-2, 1 R, 1 BB. This season has not been kind to Medina as he owns a .215/.261/.231 line in 18 games, but of course, that is far too small of a sample to make any real determination on the 24-year-old.
- Robbie Aviles (SP, Lake County): W (1-1), 7.0 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 SO, 1 HR. Another solid outing from Aviles improved his ERA to 1.65 and his SO:BB to 29:5. The right-hander does not overwhelm hitters, but that control -- along with a tick up in strikeouts -- is something that should get a shot in Carolina later in the year.
- Paul Hendrix (SS, Lake County): 3-for-4, 2 R, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB. Lake County's new shortstop continued his season-long tear as he improved his line to .331/.432/.565 in 35 games. Though he will eventually cool off at least a little, the power Hendrix is showing makes the 22-year-old interesting to follow.
- Claudio Bautista (2B, Lake County): 3-for-3, 1 R, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB. On May 16, Bautista owned a .483 OPS and .228 BABIP. Over the last five games, the second baseman is seeing some positive regression first-hand, as his five-game hitting streak has increased his OPS to .614 and his BABIP to .280.
- Clint Frazier (CF, Lake County): 2-for-4, 2, R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 SO, 1 SF. Frazier continues to learn and adjust at the Low-A level, as his .342 on-base percentage is not bad, but the 44 strikeouts with only 10 extra base hits through 32 games will need improvement.
- Grant Fink (3B, Lake County): 1-for-4, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 SO. Strikeout #61 in 42 games came Wednesday, but Fink's well-timed single scored two. It has not been the ideal season for Fink, but it has been a solid one to date (.745 OPS, .133 isolated power).
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I think it was shoulder surgery. Honestly, don't remember...but maybe a BOR arm if he develops. Not sure where is stuff is at right now, but he was more of a pitch to contact guy.
Robbie Aviles with another solid outing on the mound, it really looks like he has gotten his career back on the rails and is gaining momentum.
Paul Hendrix's strong season is encouraging, maybe he becomes a legit UTL prospect long term.
Paulino's bat has been as advertised with the move to LF, maybe for him and Carlos Santana it's all about keeping it simple.