Adam Haseley Proves He Can Hit Good Pitching
Outfielder Adam Haseley improved each week in his first full pro season. Drafted No. 8 overall out of Virginia in 2017, he hit .305/.361/.433 with 11 home runs in 118 games at high Class A Clearwater and Double-A Reading.
The lefthanded-hitting Haseley showed strong contact skills at both stops, while doubling his walk rate, from 5 percent to 10 percent, when he moved to Double-A.
"He has an advanced hitter’s mind,” Reading manager Greg Legg said. "One of his first games, they came in on him and he popped to third base, and the next at-bat they came in again and he homered to right on almost the same pitch. He barrels up two or three balls a game. He’s fun to watch.”
With the help of Clearwater hitting coach John Mizerock and hitting coordinator Andy Tracy, Haseley adjusted his stance and became more upright. That helped his leverage and produced results.
"He hits good pitching,” one frequent observer said.
Triple-A Lehigh Valley lefthander Cole Irvin put himself on the doorstep of the big leagues with a strong season that earned him International League pitcher of the year honors. The 24-year-old led the league with a 2.57 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP while striking out 131 and walking 35 in 161.1 innings.
Club officials laud Irvin, a 2016 fifth-round pick out of Oregon, for the studious preparation he brings to each start and the way he commands four pitches, particularly an average fastball with movement and a plus changeup.
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Low Class A Lakewood lefthander Will Stewart has added strength and velocity since joining the organization as a 20th-round pick out of an Alabama high school in 2015.
It all started to come together for the 6-foot-2, 175-pound southpaw this season. He went 8-1, 2.06 in 20 starts with 90 strikeouts and 21 walks in 113.2 innings.
"Our strength and conditioning people have done a great job with him,” minor league pitching coordinator Rafael Chaves said. "He’s very efficient. He makes the hitter swing early with his two-seam (fastball). He can get it up to 95 (mph), and his changeup and breaking ball are really developing.”