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Around The Farm: November 12, 2013

Around The Farm:  November 12, 2013
November 13, 2013
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Around the Farm (ATF) takes a quick look at some of the daily performances by Indians prospects. This is a special fall and winter ball version of ATF that recaps all the offseason action by Indians players in the Arizona Fall League and the Caribbean Leagues.  The positions listed below are where the player was playing in the game.

ARIZONA FALL LEAGUE (AFL)

Joe Wendle (Surprise Saguaros, 2B): 2-for-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 BB, 1 K. Besides the gaudy numbers you see listed here, he was also involved in turning two double play for the Saguaros.  The only downside to this outing was that Joe grounded into a double play himself.  He is now batting .298 with twelve RBI in 15 AFL games so far.

Tony Wolters (Surprise Saguaros, SS): 0-for-3, 1 BB, 2 K. Wolters slips below the Mendoza Line once again (now .186 in 13 AFL games) as his offensive difficulties in the AFL continue, though he was involved in both of Surprise's defensive double plays on the night. He's had some sporadic playing time which may be contributing to his down numbers, though has a nice 9:10 walk to strikeout ratio.

Shawn Armstrong (Surprise Saguaros, RP): H (2), 1 IP, 1 BB, 1 K.  Armstrong has another solid outing as he picks up his second hold of the Arizona Fall League season as the Saguaros continue their march to Saturday's Championship Game at Scottsdale Stadium.

PUERTO RICO WINTER LEAGUE (LBPRC)

Carlos Moncrief (Gigantesde Carolina, RF): 2-for-5, 1 RBI, 2 K.  Moncrief picks up his first multi-hit night in seven LBPRC outings this offseason and raises his slash line to .262/.346/.261.  Hopefully, this is a sign of him beginning to shake off the rust from the long break between the end of the minor league regular season and the Puerto Rican campaign, which starts later than the other winter ball leagues.

Joseph Colon (Cangrejeros de Santurce, SP): 4 IP, 6 H, 3 R (all earned), 1 BB, 4 K.  Colon's second outing of the winter season doesn't go quite as well as his first, to say the least.  Like anyone else in the Puerto Rican League right now, the sample size is too small to allow for "big picture" insights to be gleaned from them just yet. He had a good first outing and a poor second outing, so they just cancel each other out. It is as simple as that.

Bryce Stowell (Criollos de Caguas, RP) - H (1), 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB - A solid relief effort from Stowell in his 2013-1014 LBPRC debut.  Hopefully, this is a preview of how he will perform all winter in the Caribbean.

DOMINICAN WINTER LEAGUE (LIDOM)

Erik Gonzalez (Leones del Escogido, SS): 2-for-2, 2 R, 1 3B, 1 BB.  Gonzalez continues to hit well in LIDOM as his slash is now at a very healthy .392/.416/.500 with four extra-base hits and eight RBI in 20 Domincan League appearances this winter.  Hopefully he can keep this up as the LIDOM  regular season nears its halfway mark.

VENEZUELAN WINTER LEAGUE (LVBP)

Jesus Aguilar (Leones del Caracas, 1B): 0-for-4.  The RBI Machine is showing some serious signs of wearing down.  He has been playing baseball since March and the length of his season seems to be taking its toll on him as he is only posting a .220/.256/.390 slash line in his last ten games (including Tuesday night).  He has shown some glimpses of power production in the last two weeks, but hasn't shown any consistency or ability to hit for contact when he doesn't crush it.

User Comments

Chip
November 15, 2013 - 7:07 AM EST
Any succuss Chisenhall might have has nothing to do with hand eye coordination or strength, he has plenty of both. What he does need is a better mental approach and pitch recognition skills. If he should happen to develop those in the slightest you will see him take off as a player. He has the physical ability to be one of the best offensive 3rd basemen in the game, but the same could be said about Jason Davis' pitching ability. If, and that is a big if, Chisenhall does develop a better mental approach and pitch recognition skills, then 280/25/90 is easily attainable for him.
Andy
November 13, 2013 - 11:25 AM EST
Hiram,

Your projections for players are just way too wishful. I don't think you understand how rare a .280, 25-90 guy is in the league right now. Go look at the stats from last year and see how many people put up numbers equal to or greater than that! Chisenhall has shown glimpses of being a quality Major Leaguer, but there's no way you could see what he's done in the league so far and just assume he could be a .280, 25-90 guy. Much like your projections for Naquin - I don't think you realize that those numbers would make them two of the best players in all of Major League Baseball.
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 11:22 AM EST
Thanks,

Tony
Tony
November 13, 2013 - 11:11 AM EST
No one is being unfair, they are being realistic. Lonnie definitely has a pretty swing, but it doesn't matter how good it looks if the player's hitting ability just does not translate. I have in no way given up on Lonnie, but I also understand that right now history and odds are stacked against him. Maybe he is a late bloomer. In any case, the Indians would be wise to limit his exposure to left-handed pitching so that he can build confidence and rake against righties like he has for most of his career.

Rodriguez would likely stay at Akron with Lindor and play 2B. That's the other position he profiles at and has played. Third base is an option, but that's just the way I see it.....Rodriguez definitely wouldn't pay 3B in Columbus and Urshela is still the everyday 3B in Akron, so Rodriguez would only play a little 3B anyway. Will be interesting to see what they come up with because last year they had this same problem and then moved Wolters to catcher.....so a trade or position move for someone may be coming.

Also, it is important to note that the Indians are going to sign 7-12 minor league free agents to fill in and have more depth. They don't have much depth right now at all at Columbus or Akron. This is something you will see when the depth chart is posted soon, I'm finishing it up now.
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 10:44 AM EST
Tony,

Thank You. I think you're being a little harsh on Lonnie but this year we'll see who is correct. I do understand why some have the opinion that they do have but, I think his swing is gorgeous and see what Tito see's in a .280, 25-90 guy. He needs to put it together but, in saying that I think some are too impatient and at times a little unfair, JMO.

Just an Idea. If Ramirez is sent to AAA would it be a thought to give Ronny Rod a shot at 3rd base regularly because if he goes to AA, Wendle becomes utility player and then Wendle knocks back Urshela ??
Tony
November 13, 2013 - 10:14 AM EST
Gaining strength won't help Chisenhall better square up balls. He might just be what he is....that's something that comes with hand-eye etc. He just needs to keep refining his swing mechanics and work on that hand-eye and see what happens. Some guys just get it at the ML level and most others don't. Hopefully he is eventually the former.

Rodriguez would go to Columbus ONLY if Ramirez makes the Indians opening day roster, which is 50-50 and again depends on what the Indians do this offseason. If Ramirez is in Columbus he is the shortstop and Rodriguez would have to go to Akron again and probably be the regular at second base while Wendle would have to split time at 2B, 3B and DH. Rodriguez is the priority player so he would bump Wendle out of everyday 2B role (Rodriguez would also play a little SS to spell Lindor, maybe even some 3B).
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 10:03 AM EST
Tony,

I think Lonnie needs to put on about 5-10 lbs of muscle to drive the ball when he gets his pitch. Any way of finding out what he's doing this offseason to correct this flaw instead of popping up? It's times where he gets a ball straight down the middle in the happy zone and does nothing with it. His swing is too good and bat too quick for this to continue to happen.
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 9:54 AM EST
Tony,

Where does Ronny Rodriguez start the season?? His AA season was only ok but AA already has Wendle and Lindor as DP combo
Tony
November 13, 2013 - 9:01 AM EST
Armstrong and Stowell are the two that are 50-50 for Columbus. Without looking at it deeper, I expect both to open in Akron.
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 8:58 AM EST
Tony,

is it safe to say that the pitching staff in Columbus could consist of the following: Bauer, House, Packer, Cloyd, Tomlin and Armstrong, Adams, Soto, Stowell, Sturdevant, Hynes and others??
Tony
November 13, 2013 - 8:57 AM EST
Tejeda is up in the air for AAA like the others. I'd think he opens in Akron. Hard to really know until I do the depth chart and also see who they sign and such. The depth chart will be fluid based on the offseason moves....
Tony
November 13, 2013 - 8:55 AM EST
Stowell unfprtunately is stuck in the rut where he's lost priority and has been in AA the past few years for a wide range of reasons. Guys keep jumping over him. If there is a spot open for him, then he could open at AAA.....but it depends on who the Indians sign this offseason and who does and does not make the big league pen. I think there is a decent chance he opens in Akron again. I'm not aware how hard he is throwing right now, but know his velocity this year has not been like it was 3 years ago.
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 8:54 AM EST
Tony,

With 33 appearances in AA does Enosil Tejeda begin the year in AAA Columbus??
Tony
November 13, 2013 - 8:53 AM EST
Gonzalez has raised his stock this season for sure, but that's going from an unranked guy to maybe a top 40-60 prospect in the system. Until that plate discipline improves, it is hard to believe he will have much success at the plate beyond High-A or Double-A and definitely can't be a ML regular. He's still a utility guy in the making right now, but there is certainly upside to be more.

Also, while the offseason performances are weighed into things, the regular season still matters most. A guy like Armstrong is probably still going to open in AA. Remember, the Indians are going to have so many holders from the big league pen in the AAA pen and probably 2-3 guys they sign to minor league deals.

I might work up the depth chart for the system today if I have time.
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 8:50 AM EST
Tony,


Looking at his numbers Bryce Stowell is very impressive(I known Numbers aren't everything) but can you tell me how hard he's throwing and do you anticipate him being in AAA??
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 8:43 AM EST
Tony,

with Shawn Armstrong's performance in the AFL, do you think he's erasing the negatives that he had during the season with the injuries and inconsistency, does this put him in AAA, back on track to join the Indians if needed during the '14 season??
Hiram
November 13, 2013 - 8:41 AM EST
Tony,

Is Erik Gonzalez moving up the prospect rankings with is performance in both the reg season and AFL and is he possibly changing the opinion of being a utility player to being a possible regular down the road??

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