Minor-League Update: April, Part II

Part One

(11) 1B Stephen Head
     A+: 103 AB, .243/.322/.379, 13 BB, 10 SO
     Trend: Down

    The peripherals are pretty good, but it seems he's making a lot of "weak contact," ie, pop ups or weak grounders. With Michael Aubrey healthy, he'll be sharing time at 1B/DH.

(12) LHP Chuck Lofrgen
     A+: 32.1 IP, 1.67 ERA, 24 H, 33 SO, 7 BB
     Trend: Up

     For a 20-year-old, those are outstanding numbers. In Lofgren's last start, he pitched seven innings, allowing one hit and one walk, and striking out 9. He's on a roll.

(13) 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
     AA: 84 AB, .417/.462/.524, 12 SO, 6 BB
     Trend: Up

     He's had trouble staying on the field, but thus far he's had no trouble once he gets there. He's blocked at third with Marte in Buffalo.

(14) 1B/OF Ryan Mulhern
     AA: 121 AB, .298/.328/.512, 39 SO, 6 BB
     Trend: Down

     Why am I trending that batting line down? Because Mulhern has struck out in just over a third of his at-bats. His SO/BB ratio is over 6; that's not going to translate into success at higher levels.

(15) RHP JD Martin
     DNP
     Trend: Level

     Martin is out after having elbow surgery last season.

(16) LHP Tony Sipp
     AA: 21.0 IP, 2.14 ERA, 15 H, 31 SO, 6 BB
     Trend: Up

     Sipp recently went on the DL with an oblique strain, but prior to that was outstanding in a starting role. On Deck Baseball rated him second in pitching in the Eastern League (behind Gio Gonzalez, and ahead of Adam Miller). Even if he does become a reliever, his stock is going way up.

(17) RHP Nick Pesco
     AA: 28.0 IP, 4.82 ERA, 27 H, 24 SO, 13 BB
     Trend: Slightly Down

     The strikeouts are there, but he's having trouble with control. With the pitching depth currently in the organization, he might get lost in the shuffle.

(18) RHP Jake Dittler
     AAA: 29.0 IP, 5.58 ERA, 31 H, 7 SO, 14 BB
     Trend: Down

     He's on the 40-man roster, but how long will he stay there? He may move into the bullpen if this keeps up.

(19) RHP Andrew Brown
     AAA: 18.2 IP, 2.41 ERA, 10 H, 15 SO, 17 BB
     Trend: WTF?

     The bizarre stat line of the bunch. Brown's kept the ERA under control, but the amount of walks have been a real problem. Perhaps some of that is due to replacement umpires in the minors, but relievers need to be able to come in and throw strikes, and Brown hasn't been doing that.

(20) OF Ben Francisco
     AAA: 105 AB, .267/.330/.448, 15 SO, 9 BB
     Trend: Level

     If Todd Hollandsworth gets hurt, I'd think that Francisco is the first player up. I doubt the Indians would want Franklin Gutierrez sitting on the bench, and Jason Dubois isn't that flexible positionally.

(21) OF Brian Barton
     A+: 72 AB, .333/.432/.597, 25 SO, 8 BB
     Trend: Level

     Barton really shouldn't be in the Carolina League at this point, but there's a logjam of outfielders ahead of him.

(22) RHP Bear Bay
     AA: 31.0 IP, 3.77 ERA, 36 H, 28 SO, 11 BB
     Trend: Level

     Pesco and Bay are Akron's third and fourth starters, which tells you a lot about the organization's pitcher depth. Rafael Perez, the other starter in Akron, made a brief appearance in Cleveland last month.

Next: Players who didn't make the list.

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