Bill James' game score calculation may not be perfect—it rewards pitchers who work deep into games without allowing many runs or hits, while providing extra credit for dominance (strikeouts) and control (few walks)—but applying it to a scrum of pitchers can winnow a crowded field in a hurry. We can further shrink the list by sorting pitchers by prospect status. Presented here are the top 10 game scores from weekend series, April 6-8, by pitchers who appear in the 2012 Baseball America Prospect Handbook.
|TOP 10 GAME SCORES BY PROSPECTS IN THE MINORS • APRIL 6-8
|Bryan Mitchell||NYY||Charleston||South Atlantic||LoA||6||1||0||0||6||1||75|
|Jed Bradley*||MIL||Brevard Cty.||Florida State||HiA||6.1||3||0||0||7||1||74|
|Roman Mendez||TEX||Myrtle Beach||Carolina||HiA||6||3||1||0||9||0||73|
|Jose Campos||NYY||Charleston||South Atlantic||LoA||6||1||0||0||3||1||72|
|Dallas Keuchel*||HOU||Okla. City||Pacific Coast||AAA||6||2||0||0||3||0||71|
|*Lefthander. Chart considers only pitchers who appear in 2012 BA Prospect Handbook
A number of lefties already appear to be in midseason form. Seven of the 10 top game scores during opening weekend belong to southpaws, including 2011 draft picks Tony Cingrani (third round, Reds, from Rice) and Jed Bradley (first round, Brewers, from Georgia Tech) . . . Among the two righthanders to make the list are a pair of Yankees farmhands who are teammates in the Charleston rotation. Bryan Mitchell walked 4.5 batters per nine innings last year in the short-season New York-Penn League (and also missed time with an abdominal strain), but he has two plus pitches and is off to a great start this season. Jose Campos was part of the bounty New York received when it shipped Jesus Montero to the Mariners, and he's no stranger to success. He led the short-season Northwest League in strikeouts and ERA last season . . . Ben Badler blogged about Roman Mendez on Saturday, so check that out to learn more about a Rangers prospect with helium.
Other Top Outings By Prospects
Red Sox first-rounder Matt Barnes struck out nine and walked two over five shutout innings during his pro debut for low Class A Greenville . . . Royals righty Jake Odorizzi struck out eight, walked none and allowed just three hits in five shutout innings for Double-A Northwest Arkansas . . . Rays righty Chris Archer received a brief introduction to Triple-A ball at the end of last season, and that experience may have paid off with a dazzling 2012 debut: six innings, two hits, one run (on a home run), eight whiffs and three walks against Gwinnett . . . Marlins first-round righty Jose Fernandez joined Paxton and Indians Triple-A righty Corey Kluber as the only pitchers to record 10 strikeouts in a start over the weekend.
Top Performance By A Pitcher Outside His Team's Top 30
Righthander David Buchanan just missed making last year's Phillies prospect list, but he's already making a case for inclusion this season. The 2010 seventh-rounder from Georgia State proved instrumental in a 4-1 win by Double-A Reading against Portland. The 22-year-old Buchanan dealt seven shutout innings, allowing two hits while notching a 9-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
Worst Game Score By A Prospect
We have a four-way tie for last with a game score of 42: Mets Double-A righty Zack Wheeler (3 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 4 SO, 3 BB), Pirates Triple-A lefty Jeff Locke (4 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 4 SO, 0 BB), Diamondbacks high Class A righty Anthony Meo (4 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 SO, 5 BB) and Astros Double-A righty Ross Seaton (5 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 1 SO, 0 BB).
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