Edinson Volquez pitched five innings in a rehab start for Triple-A Louisville yesterday, but the more interesting development is the man who came in to pitch two innings of relief: Aroldis Chapman. The Reds lefthander had made 13 starts for the Bats before making his first appearance out of the bullpen yesterday, allowing one run, one walk and striking out three.
Chapman has come as advertised, a power-armed 22-year-old with a fastball that can sit in the mid-to-high 90s and climb over 100 mph on occasion. He's struck out 79 in 67 2/3 innings, though scouts' concerns about his command and have proven to be valid, as Chapman is averaging 5.5 walks per nine innings due to some difficulties repeating his mechanics.
There is talk within the organization that Chapman's best chance to contribute at the big league level this year is as a reliever. That doesn't rule out Chapman returning to the rotation at some point—and for roughly $30 million, the Reds presumably don't see him as a permanent reliever—but he figures to spend more time in the bullpen for the near future.
Perez At His Best
With Stephen Strasburg ascending to the big leagues, there can now be a debate about who is the top pitching prospect in the minors. Coming into the year, Rangers lefthander Martin Perez seemed like a good bet to ascend to that throne as a 19-year-old not just starting the year in Double-A but returning to the level after making the jump to Frisco at the end of the '09 season.
It hasn't been as easy this year for Perez, who is sporting a 5.67 ERA in 54 innings. Yesterday, however, was Perez's best outing of the year—seven shutout innings, three hits, one walk and six strikeouts at Midland. Given that Perez's peers are mostly in low Class A or short-season ball, Perez should be fine.
Piñeda Debuts In Triple-A
The Mariners bring in talent from across the world as well as any team in the game, and Michael Pineda figures to be the next international addition to Seattle's big league roster in the near future. Pineda, a 2005 signing out of the Dominican Republic, made his Triple-A debut yesterday for Tacoma and held Salt Lake to one hit over six shutout innings with three walks and five strikeouts. As he's filled out his 6-foot-5 frame, Pineda has continued to add a few extra ticks to his fastball—a pitch that now regularly touches the mid-90s—to become Seattle's top pitching prospect
Back To The Start
To the joy of many Mets fans, Jenrry Mejia is back in the minor leagues to continue his development as a starter. Pitching for Double-A Binghamton yesterday, Mejia allowed one run in 2 1/3 innings with two walks and three strikeouts. Whether Mejia is a better fit as a starter or coming out of the bullpen remains to be seen, but returning him to a starting role at least leaves the option open and will give Mejia more experience and more opportunity to polish his secondary stuff and his command.
No Second Thoughts
If there is going to be a road block for Jason Kipnis, he hasn't hit it yet. The Indians' 2009 second-rounder moved from the outfield to second base this season, but he's still hitting like he's a corner outfielder. Kipnis raked for high Class A Kinston and has done the same since his promotion to Double-A Akron two weeks ago. The 23-year-old Kipnis went 2-for-4 with a home run yesterday, his third homer in 10 games with the Aeros to bring his overall numbers up to .307/.394/.506 in 64 games. Calling a player one of the top second base prospects in the minors is usually faint praise, but with Kipnis, that's certainly not the case.
• Indians righthander Alexander Perez will miss the remainder of the 2010 season to have Tommy John surgery. Perez, 20, made just two starts this year for Kinston.
• Tigers lefthander Casey Crosby is making his way back from a left elbow injury that has prevented him from pitching this year. Crosby, 21, made a rehab appearance in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League on Tuesday and allowed two runs (one earned) in four innings with one walk and five strikeouts. Crosby's health is something to keep an eye on, as he missed nearly the entire 2008 season due to Tommy John surgery after signing in '07 as a fifth-round pick.
• Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas has had an unbelievable season for Double-A Northwest Arkansas, although last night was not his finest moment. Moustakas was ejected in the third inning by third-base umpire Alex Ortiz, then appeared to get very close—maybe too close—to the umpire to express his disagreement.
Comments will be monitored prior to being added to the site. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be rejected. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed.
We have chosen to open up commenting to everyone, so comment away! We want to hear from each and every one of you! Leave a comment.
About This Blog
Syndicate This Blog
Search This Blog