Archive for May 27th, 2009

The Z-Meter: 5/27/2009 – Two For the Show

The Z-meter tracks the story arcs of 25 top prospects (or players we just like) on their way to the bigs. It is named after current Washington Nationals star Ryan Zimmerman, who made the transition from anchoring the University of Virginia to starring in MLB in one year.

Promoted:

Jordan Zimmermann: Syracuse Chiefs (AAA) to Washington Nationals (MLB)
Matt LaPorta: Columbus Clippers (AAA) to Cleveland Indians (MLB)
Daniel Bard: Pawtucket Red Sox (AAA) to Boston Red Sox (MLB)
Mat Gamel: Nashville Sounds (AAA) to Milwaukee Brewers (MLB)
Fernando Martinez: Buffalo Bisons (AAA) to New York Mets (MLB)
Matt Wieters: Norfolk Tides (AAA) to Baltimore Orioles (MLB)

Antonio Bastardo: Reading Phillies (AA) to Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (AAA)

Madison Bumgarner: San Jose Giants (A) to Connecticut Defenders (AA)

Odds are, I’ll find out that someone else got promoted this week, too, which will invalidate my “clever” title for this post. But I am going to wilfully ignore any such occurrence.

Two fast climbers on the Z-meter have reached the desired pinnacle – a ticket to the show. As OMDQ informed us earlier today, Fernando Martinez, who is not even old enough to drink legally in this country, has been brought up to the Mets to fill some injury holes. Matt Wieters, through sheer dint of his prowess, is making it to the show as a catcher, after just a touch more than one season in the minors. A hearty Bus Leagues welcome to them both!

We’ll be adding Jeanmar Gomez of the perfect game to fill one hole in the meter. Since OMDQ already wrote about him, all you need to do is follow the link to learn more. My other choice is 26-year-old outfielder Andrew Locke, who has been belting it for the Corpus Christi Hooks in double-A. He’s not exactly undergoing a meteoric rise to the top, but he’s definitely getting very hot, and may be worth a look from the Astros if he can keep it up.

Ah, yes. Here’s where the screw-up has occurred. There’s usually at least one like this, so I was waiting to find it. I had Ramiro Pena on the meter, despite the fact that he’s spent pretty much all season playing in New Yankee Stadium instead of Scranton-Wilkes Barre. Pretty big difference there (goes to show just how diligently I avoid following the Yanks). So he’s off the meter, and Yonder Alonso is on. Mostly because he’s good, but also because I can’t, under any circumstances, resist a power-hitter named Yonder. When your given name is also a good description of where you can hit ’em, you’re a Bus Leagues kind of guy.

Antonio Bastardo also went up a notch, pitching his way from Reading to Lehigh Valley. He’s shown skeelz as a starter and a reliever this season, so his promotion could lead to a future debut for the Phillies in either slot. The kid got a no-decision in six innings, and ended up with a 4.5 ERA after his first triple-A start. The good news is, he only issued 2 walks and notched a pretty stunning 11 Ks in that interval, so he’s definitely got the stuff to bring home some Ws.

For a look at Strasburg, check out televised coverage of the College World Series over the next few weeks.


The top level. These prospects are in AAA in the prime of their youth, waiting for the call that will change their lives.

Andrew McCutchen, CF – Indianapolis Indians (Pirates): .282 AVG – 35 R – 2 HR – 16 RBI – 15 BB – 9 SB – .459 SLG – .803 OPS

Wade Davis, RHP – Durham Bulls (Rays): 9 Games – 5W – 1L – 2.66 ERA – 23 BB – 30 K

Kila Kaaihue, 1B – Omaha Royals – .277 – 31 R – 8 HR – 25 RBI – 43 BB – 0 SB – .539 SLG – .978 OPS

Alcides Escobar, SS – Nashville Sounds (Brewers): .287 – 34 R – 2 HR – 14 RBI – 12 BB – 21 SB – .388 SLG – .722 OPS

Carlos Carrasco, RHP – Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (Phillies): 9 Starts – 0 W – 6 L – 5.81 ERA – 13 BB – 52 K

Austin Jackson, OF – Scranton Wilkes-Barre (Yankees): .358 – 23 R – 0 HR – 19 RBI – 19 BB – 8 SB – .446 SLG – .888 OPS

Antonio Bastardo, LHP – Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (Phillies): 1 Games – 1 Starts – 0 W – 0 L – 0 SV – 4.50 ERA – 2 BB – 11 K


These guys also have the potential to skip straight to the majors, but may get promoted to AAA first.

Lars Anderson, 1B – Portland SeaDogs (Red Sox): .228 AVG – 22 R – 6 HR – 25 RBI – 22 BB – 0 SB – .409 SLG – .739 OPS

Jhoulys Chacin, RHP – Tulsa Drillers (Rockies): 9 Starts – 3 W – 4 L – 3.49 ERA – 19 BB – 43 K

Carlos Santana, C – Akron Aeros (Indians): .303 AVG – 29 R – 7 HR – 28 RBI – 30 BB – 0 SB – .549 SLG – .985 OPS

Justin Smoak, 1B – Frisco RoughRiders (Rangers): .324 AVG – 26 R – 6 HR – 25 RBI – 31 BB – 0 SB – .500 SLG – .943 OPS
 
Andrew Locke, OF – Corpus Christi Hooks (Astros): .358 AVG – 25 R – 9 HR – 48 RBI – 14 BB – 0 SB – .593 SLG – .993 OPS
 
 
Madison Bumgarner, LHP – Connecticut Defenders (Giants): 3 Games – 2 Starts – 3 W – 0 L – .50 ERA – 4 BB – 21 K
 
Jeanmar Gomez, RHP – Akron Aeros (Indians): 5 Starts – 4 W – 1 L – 1.29 ERA – 3 BB – 30 K

These guys have vast potential but need to work out some kinks in A-ball before they can advance.

Ian Gac, 1B – Bakersfield Blaze (Rangers): .222 AVG – 9 R – 4 HR – 16 RBI – 8 BB – 0 SB – .404 SLG – .679 OPS

Mike Moustakas, SS – Wilmington Blue Rocks (Royals): .293 AVG – 29 R – 7 HR – 35 RBI – 9 BB – 2 SB – .488 SLG – .815 OPS

Pedro Alvarez, 3B – Lynchburg Hillcats (Pirates): .234 AVG – 21 R – 9 HR – 37 RBI – 26 BB – 0 SB – .449 SLG – .784 OPS

Che-Hsuan Lin, OF – Salem Red Sox: .211 AVG – 22 R – 1 HR – 13 RBI – 20 BB – 7 SB – .293 SLG – .614 OPS

Josh Vitters, 3B – Peoria Chiefs (Cubs): .359 AVG – 28 R – 11 HR – 28 RBI – 4 BB – 2 SB – .628 SLG – 1.016 OPS

Shooter Hunt (7-day Disabled List), RHP – Beloit Snappers (Twins): 7 Games – 5 Starts – 0 W – 1 L – 10.70 ERA – 33 BB – 18 K

Collin Cowgill, OF – Visalia Rawhide (Diamondbacks): .278 AVG – 33 R – 5 HR – 29 RBI – 19 BB – 6 SB – .463 SLG – .831 OPS

Mauricio Robles, P – West Michigan Whitecaps (Tigers): 9 Starts – 4 W – 2 L – 3.24 ERA – 18 BB – 67 K

Tim Beckham, SS – Bowling Green Hot Rods (Rays): .305 AVG – 18 R – 2 HR – 24 RBI – 12 BB – 1 SB – .422 SLG – .775 OPS

Ezekiel Spruill, RHP – Rome Braves (Braves): 9 Games – 8 Starts – 6 W – 2 L – 1 SV – 2.83 ERA – 8 BB – 42 K

Yonder Alonso, 1B – Sarasota Reds (Reds): .289 AVG – 19 R – 6 HR – 35 RBI – 19 BB – 0 SB – .493 SLG – .858 OPS


NCAA: Only used if a prospect in college shows really, truly, immensely, hugely inescapable potential.

Stephen Strasburg, RHP – San Diego State: 13 Starts – 13 W – 0L – 1.24 ERA – 19 BB – 180 K

Visit SDSU’s Strasburg Central for more.


Prospects chosen from Diamond Cutter’s Top 25, Baseball America, and our trademark irrational sense of whimsy.

Now Batting For The New York Mets…

On June 25, I am driving down to New York with my brother and my friends Chris and Billy to see the Mets and Cardinals play at Citi Field. The weekly countdown in my planner should be more than enough to convey how much I’m looking forward to the trip (which will also include stops in Baltimore, Pittsburgh, and Cooperstown; I might be filing daily dispatches from the road).

This is assuming, however, that anybody on the Mets is healthy by the time June 25 rolls around.  Jose Reyes?  Injured.  Carlos Delgado? Injured.  Carlos Beltran?  Might be injured.  Ryan Church, Brian Schneider, Oliver Perez?  Injured, injured, injured.  David Wright?  You are…safe.  For now.

If there is a silver lining to all this destruction, it’s that Fernando Martinez (who I’d like to call Redux, because he’s probably the most anticipated Fernando since Valenzuela; I don’t even think I’m using the word right, but trust me, it makes sense in my head) will get a chance to show what he can do at the major league level.

Martinez, the prized prospect the Mets refused to trade for Johan Santana before last season, is twenty-years-old.  He began the year in AAA Buffalo, where he was off to the best power start of his four-year career (eight homeruns and .552 slugging percentage in 178 plate appearances) before being called up to New York when Reyes was placed on the 15-day disabled list.  He made his major league debut earlier tonight, batting sixth and going o-3 with two strikeouts and an RBI groundout.

There’s no telling how long Redux (relax, I’m just trying it out) will be in the major leagues.  It probably depends on some combination of his performance and Beltran’s health (he has a bruise below his knee and an inflamed tibia, for what it’s worth).  Best guess is that he sticks for awhile, fills some gaps until everyone comes back, then heads back to Buffalo so he can get regular at-bats.

But hey, if he’s around on June 25, I won’t complain.