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2003 Wrapups: Milwaukee Brewers

With the 2003 season coming to a close, we will be providing a brief wrapup of the season for all 30 minor league teams. In each report, we will take a look at how the team's Top 10 Prospects performed, identify some emerging prospects and organizational leaders, and report on the performance of their top draft pick.
Complete index of Team Wrapups               2003 League Wrapups

By Kevin Goldstein
October 16, 2003

Season Results

Level Team League W L PCT
AAA Indianapolis International 64 78 .451
AA Huntsville Southern 75 63 .543
A+ High Desert California 42 98 .300
A Beloit Midwest 75 61 .551
R Helena Pioneer 48 28 .632
R AZL Brewers Arizona 18 37 .327
TOTAL 322 365 .469


Performance of Top 10 Prospects

Here's how our top 10 prospects entering this season performed in 2003.

1. Brad Nelson, 1b/of      Age: 20
Missed two months of the season early on with a broken hamate bone, and the injury sapped Nelson of his power all season long. Nonetheless, he was still productive at High Desert, but struggled following a promotion to Double-A.
TEAMG AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG
High Desert (Low Class A) 41 167 23 52 9 1 1 18 12 22 2 .311 .363 .395
Huntsville (Double-A) 39 143 15 30 12 0 1 14 11 34 2 .210 .274 .315

2. Mike Jones, rhp      Age: 20
Pitched very well in the first half, but made just one appearance after June 28th because of an elbow sprain, and still felt pain at the end of the season, keeping him out of Arizona Fall League action.
Team W-L SV ERA G IP H R ER BB SO
Huntsville (Double-A) 7-2 0 2.40 17 97.2 87 35 26 47 63

3. Prince Fielder, 1b      Age: 19
Showed up this spring in the best shape of his brief career and established himself as one of the top power prospects in baseball, winning Midwest League MVP honors while leading the league in RBIs and finishing in the top three of the other Triple Crown categories. Hit .339-12-34 in July.
TEAMG AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG
Beloit (Low Class A) 137 502 81 157 22 2 27 112 71 80 2 .313 .409 .526

4. Ben Hendrickson, rhp      Age: 22
Curveball specialist also suffered from elbow soreness, which limited him to just six starts in the first three months of the season. Was healthy and effective in the second half, putting up a 2.52 ERA in his final 10 games.
Team W-L SV ERA G IP H R ER BB SO
Huntsville (Double-A) 7-6 0 3.45 17 78.1 82 35 30 28 56

5. Corey Hart, 3b      Age: 21
Won Southern League MVP honors, pacing the circuit in hits, doubles and RBIs. Despite his size (6-6, 220), he's a surprising threat on the basepaths, with 52 stolen bases in the last two seasons. You'd be hard pressed to find a scout who believes he can stay at third base.
TEAMG AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG
Huntsville (Double-A) 130 493 70 149 40 1 13 94 28 101 25 .302 .340 .467

6. J.J. Hardy, SS      Age: 21
Was running neck-and-neck with Hart for Southern League MVP consideration before falling into a late season slump, hitting just .241-3-15 in his final 50 games. Still made dramatic strides offensively (particularly in power and plate discipline), and is one of the better defensive shortstops around.
TEAMG AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG
Huntsville (Double-A) 114 416 67 116 26 0 12 62 58 54 6 .279 .368 .428

7. David Krynzel, of      Age: 21
A tale of two halves for Krynzel, who was hitting .300 with 53 runs scored on July 31st, but hit just .188 the remainder of the season, including a miserable .137 (13-for-95) in August. Home runs decreased from 13 to two and he was caught stealing 21 times.
TEAMG AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG
Huntsville (Double-A) 124 457 72 122 13 11 2 34 60 119 43 .267 .357 .357

8. Manny Parra, lhp      Age: 21
The highest rated draft-and-follow prospect from the 2001 Draft, Parra did not disappoint in his full season debut. Went 8-0, 2.37 in his final 13 starts, but didn't pitch after mid-August because of a strained pectoral muscle.
Team W-L SV ERA G IP H R ER BB SO
Beloit (Low Class A) 11-2 0 2.73 23 138.2 127 50 42 24 117

9. Ben Diggins, rhp      Age: 24
Pitched very well in eight starts for Huntsville before going down with elbow soreness. An MRI revealed a partially torn ligament, and when it did not respond to rehabilitation, he had Tommy John surgery in August. Career could be at a crossroads for the Dodgers' 2000 first-round pick.
Team W-L SV ERA G IP H R ER BB SO
Huntsville (Double-A) 3-2 0 2.36 8 45.2 41 18 12 16 32

10. Matt Ford, lhp      Age: 22
Rule 5 draftee stuck on the Brewers' roster, and pitched very well despite a pair of stints on the DL with elbow soreness. Had a 2.15 ERA as a reliever, but made four starts late in the season, where he went 0-3, 8.79.
Team W-L SV ERA G IP H R ER BB SO
Brewers (MLB) 0-3 0 4.33 25 43.2 46 23 21 21 26


Top Draft Pick:

Rickie Weeks, 2b    Southern U.   Bonus: $3.6M
The all-time NCAA leader in batting average and second-overall pick, Weeks was an offensive machine at Beloit and gave Milwaukee a brief glimpse of the future with a late-season callup. The jury is still out on whether or not he can stay at second base.
TEAMG AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO SB AVG OBP SLG
AZL Brewers (Rookie) 1 4 0 2 0 0 0 4 0 2 1 .500 .600 .500
Beloit (Low Class A) 20 63 13 22 8 1 1 16 15 9 2 .349 .494 .556
Brewers (MLB) 7 12 1 2 1 0 0 0 1 6 0 .167 .286 .250


Emerging Prospects:

Luis Martinez, lhp: Somewhat of an enigma entering the season, Martinez finally pitched to his talent this season, beginning the year by not allowing an earned run in his first four starts, striking out 33 in 23 innings while allowing just seven hits. Repeated the performance at Triple-A in the second half (26.1 scoreless innings in his first four starts), but was unable to get the trifecta, as he was pounded in four outings at the major league level (0-3, 9.92).
Dennis Sarfate, rhp: A 2001 ninth-round selection who was limited to just 38 innings in the past two years because of elbow surgery, Sarfate stayed healthy all year and went 12-2, 2.84 for Beloit with more than a strikeout per inning.


Statistical Leaders

Batting Average Jason Belcher .320
Home Runs Prince Fielder 27
Runs Batted In Prince Fielder 112
Stolen Bases Chris Morris 67
Earned Run Average Luis Martinez 2.13
Wins Derek Lee 13
Strikeouts Luis Martinez 162
Saves Roberto Giron 15

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