The Rockies have found a free agent gem in All-Star Greg Holland, but they have had issues getting the lead to Holland. So on Wednesday the team went out and acquired Pat Neshek for a trio of South Atlantic League midseason all-stars.
None of the trio of Jose Gomez, Alejandro Requena and J.D. Hammer cracked the Rockies' preseason Top 30 Prospects list, but all three have impressed this year with a combination of tools and performance at the lower levels of the full-season minors. They will be joining an already deep Phillies farm system.
Pat Neshek, RHP
For Philadelphia, the decision to trade Neshek was an easy one. He's a free agent at the end of the year and he's in the midst of the best season of his lengthy career. Neshek has been outstanding, posting a 1.12 ERA in 40.1 innings while posting one of the best strikeout rates (10.0 K/9) and walk rates (1.1 BB/9) of his career. Neshek's ability to locate his fastball and attack hitters with his plus slider has continued to make him an effective relief option.
Jose Gomez, SS/2B
Gomez is an bat-first middle infielder who has hit wherever the Rockies have sent him. An all-star in the Pioneer League last year, he was also a South Atlantic League all-star this season. He's a career .316 hitter who has impressed both amateur and pro scouts with his feel for the game and excellent hand-eye coordination.
Gomez's range is a little lacking which leads scouts to expect to see him slide over to second base more consistently as he ages. But he does have an above-average arm that plays well at either spot.
|Alejandro Requena, RHP
Requena was one of the hottest pitchers in the South Atlantic League in the first month of the season. He allowed one earned run in his first four starts of the season, thanks to a little luck (he gave up five unearned runs) and a lot of strike-throwing. While he's cooled down a little since he's survived the very tough pitching environment of Asheville by staying ahead of hitters and attacking with his fastball. The righthander fills the zone with 88-93 mph fastballs and can locate his curveball for strikes or bury it when he's ahead in the count. His changeup shows flashes as well, with some evaluators preferring it to his curveball.
|J.D. Hammer, RHP
Hammer has proven to be a late-round find. A 24th-round pick in 2016 out of Marshall, where he served as the team's Sunday starter, Hammer's fastball has gained a couple of ticks thanks to the Rockies' development program and a move to the bullpen. The South Atlantic League all-star now will touch 97 mph and sits in the mid 90s.
Unfortunately considering his name, Hammer does not have a curveball that puts hitters away. Instead he has a below-average slider that he's working to improve to match his already impressive fastball. Hammer's fastball gets some swings and misses already and he does a good job of locating it.