Prospect Hot Sheet

    JAYPERS (IL): Your thoughts on 18-year old Edinson Rincon raking in the NWL, and did he get any consideration?

Matthew Eddy: Rincon earns a cautious thumbs-up from us. See: This Hot Sheet's Helium Watch. Signed out of the Dominican in 2007, he has power, a polished approach for his age and a couple productive seasons to his credit. He has positional questions and a ton of development in front of him, but Rincon is, at the very least, interesting.

    Dexter Carter's Clone (Kannapolis): You have GOT to be kidding me. I had a killer outing last night and am leading the minors in K's. What gives, Mr. Eddy????

Matthew Eddy: We can dig on Dexter Carter, but we want to see how the 22-year-old's stuff plays against older competition. We eagerly await his promotion to high Class A.

    Mike (New York): Was Neil Medchill considered for the hot sheet this week and what is his upside?

Matthew Eddy: He was, and he received strong consideration. A Yankees' 11th-rounder from Oklahoma State this year, Medchill homered in the four games leading up to our ranking. He's at .349/.380/.698 on the year, so it's more than an isolated storm. What works against Medchill and other short-season players is that their full-season counterparts have been grinding it out every day for three and a half months now. And that tends to count for more when we hash out these rankings. Plus the talent levels in the short-season leagues is very hard to ascertain, especially with so many top picks still unsigned.

    jason (Athens,Ga): i was wondering if astros pitcher jordan lyles is hurt? he hasnt in over a week. also do you see lyles and ross seaton moving up a level before the end of the season?

Matthew Eddy: Our records indicate that Lyles has not been placed on the DL. More than likely, the Astros are simply giving the 18-year-old a breather. With most organizations, one could expect maybe a bump to high Class A to close the year, but because Lancaster is the next step on the ladder, Houston may choose to keep Lyles and Seaton where they are.

    Travis (Omak, WA): Which Mariners prospect was the closest to being included in this weeks prospect hot sheet? Seems like I have seen very few Mariners on this list this season which is probably due to many of their best prospects being injured this season.

Matthew Eddy: Oh yeah. Injuries have derailed the Mariners' brightest Hot Sheet hopefuls. Michael Saunders missed a month; Greg Halman a couple weeks; Carlos Triunfel's out for the regular season; Jharmidy DeJesus was slowed by a balky shoulder and missed out on a full-season assignment; Dennis Raben's out for the year; Michael Pineda is battling elbow soreness. And that's just players from the Top 10. Now back in the short-season Northwest League, 3B Mario Martinez was probably the M's best chance this week. He batted .381/.458/.429 with a double and a pair of walks in 24 trips.

    Tom (Twin Cities): In Danny Rams' short sampling this season, at three different levels, he's absolutely crushed everything in sight! He's never been in the Twins' top-30 list, but at 20 and some experience already at hi-A earlier this season, will he be moving up? Is he a legit prospect? Thanks.

Matthew Eddy: He's a difficult joker to peg. Rams has youth and draft pedigree on his side (2nd round, 2007), but the catcher is in Rookie ball for the third straight year. The reason: He's stiff-bodied with a long swing and a predilection for swinging and missing at offspeed stuff. Also, reports on his throwing arm consistently register slow pop times and poor accuracy.

    Mike (Utica, NY): Have you heard anything new about Jenrry Mejia injury status? Also who would you take, Holt or Mejia?

Matthew Eddy: In a recent conversation with a Mets official, he indicated that Mejia would return sooner rather than later. He was noncommittal, though, when asked which pitcher was the organization's top pitching prospect. If only because of his physical, 6-foot4 build, I'd side with Holt. However, Mejia's three pitches may grade out a tick higher than Holt's. It's just that he may face a move to the bullpen if he reaches the big leagues.

    Jason (New York): Regardless if Jesus Montero stays behind the plate, who is going to be the better offensive player Jesus or Carlos Santana?

Matthew Eddy: I'm inclined to say Montero, because guys with this much power who also can hit for average are so difficult to find. On the other hand, Santana offers a switch-hitting bat and a good deal more athleticism. My vote: Montero.

    Matt Hahn (Rhode Island): Worries about Logan Forsythe being another Antonelli/Daric Barton/Sean Burroughs? How often do elite on base skills transfer from the minors to majors when they are accompanied by so little power?

Matthew Eddy: Sure, it's a concern. Forsythe appears to have a better feel for hitting than Antonelli and significantly more athleticism than Barton or Burroughs. I know those are just examples, and I don't mean to sidestep the question. Essentially, Forsythe projects to be, at worst, a good enough hitter to man third base for a second-division club or to fill in around the diamond (second base, outfield, too) for a good one.

    Stu Martin (Virginia): What was the logic of having Kyle Drabek over Mat Latos (and it is "Mat", right, not "Matt"?) in your recent top 25?

Matthew Eddy: We were split down the middle on this very question. I favored Latos because he has a similar repertoire to Drabek but never has had arm surgery. Others were scared off by concerns about Latos' maturity and dedication to the game. Looks like he's proving his critic wrong this season. We list Latos as Mat, as in Gamel. His given name is Mathew.

    dave (houston): I know that Bud norris is a sp in AAA, But does he have more value as a rp than sp. if i remember correctly Gerry hunsicker had billy wagner starting in the minors so that he could develop the extra pitch and sharpen his slider. could this be the same scenario for norris?

Matthew Eddy: This is absolutely the reason Norris continues to start for Round Rock, regardless of the future role the Astros have pegged for him. In addition to sharpening his slider against live competition, starting every five days gives Norris the advantage of working on finer details during off-day bullpen sessions, without facing pressure of game situations.

    Tony (Clearwater, Fl): Thanks for taking my question Matt, Eric Young Jr? Is he too old a prospect, his numbers have been great this year. Are the Rockies looking at him at 2b long term?

Matthew Eddy: At 24, E.Y. Jr. has not been counted out as a prospect. But unless his bat takes another jump forward, he probably lacks the defensive chops to hold down second base on an everyday basis. With his outfield experience, a utility fill-in role seems more likely. Maybe along the lines of Willie Harris.

    Alex (Kansas City, MO): Should I be worried about Mike Moustakas yet?

Matthew Eddy: Maybe just a touch. He's stayed healthy and gotten repetitions, but with a line of .258/.295/.419 in the Carolina League, it's safe to say more was expected out of the '07 second overall pick.

    Kevin (NY): Is Austin Jackson a future CF or will he be moved to a corner OF position? Could he play alongside Brett Gardner in the future?

Matthew Eddy: A lot of Jackson's value is tied to his being an average center fielder. Many evaluators project him to have average power once he matures, and at 22 he's still on the young side for Triple-A. On the scouting scale, average power equates to 15-19 home runs. While 13 is the most Jackson has hit in a minor league season, if he runs into a few more balls in the big leagues, he could profile as a RF for the Yankees. So, yes, he and Gardner may one day play side by side.