May 26, 2018 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Keegan Thompson (HiA Mytle Beach – Chicago Cubs) 23 years old
6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 0 BB, 8 K, 3.61 ERA, Win 2-3

Nice bounce back outing from the 3rd round pick (2017) out of Auburn University. The former ace of the Tiger staff  is handling the jump to HiA well, especially after seeing only 19 innings at Short-Season Eugene in 2017. After allowing five earned runs during his previous start, the 6′ 0″- 193 lb right-hander threw a one-hit shutout over six innings last evening.

 
TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Cristian Javier (LoA Quad Cities – Houston) 21 year old
6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K, 1.85 ERA, Win 5-1

Javier was on my International Watch list prior to the 2016 season. That season, the 6′ 1″- 170 lb righty made his United States debut gliding across three rookie levels. He logged a 2.29 ERA in 13 appearances (6 starts) along with 66 K’s in 51 innings. Over his last four starts, the Dominican Republic native has spun a 0.95 ERA with 35 strikeouts and only 2 walks in 19 innings, including a career-high 10 K’s on May 16th. The Astros allowed Javier to spend a month with HiA Buies Creek to begin the 2017 (where he impressed in two relief appearances) before being sent to short-season Tri-City in mid-June to begin the short-season league.

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Under the Radar Hitters of the Day – May 26, 2018

National League – Top Hitter of the Day:

  • Buddy Reed, CF – HiA Lake Elsinore Storm (SD) – Cal League4-4, HR (8), 2B, 3R, 2SB (22,23) 
    • With stolen base number 23 last night, the 2016 – 2nd rounder out of the University of Florida pulls into a tie for second place for most steals in all the minors. He sits side by side with Angels prospect Luis Rengifo, yet has a ways to go to reach Houston Astros  prospect Myles Straw, who currently has 31 steals for Double-A Corpus Christi. 

American League – Top Hitter of the Day: 

  • Hunter Hargrove, 1B – LoA Beloit Snappers (OAK) – Midwest League4-5, 3 HR (1,2,3), 2B, 3R, 7 RBi
    • The 25th rounder out of Texas Tech University (2017) hit one more home run last night than he had all last season with the AZL squad and the Vermont Lake Monsters of the New York-Penn League. Hargrove’s performance yesterday was one of the biggest lines I’ve reported so far this season. 

National League: 

Notes on LAD’s McKinstry and Tampa Bay’s Gomez 

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May 25, 2018 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Sixto Sanchez (HiA Clearwater – Philadelphia) 19 year old
6 IP, 3 H,  ER, 1 BB, 10 K, 2.95 ERA, Win 3-3
  • The Phillies #2 ranked prospect is proving why he is the top arm in system. As one of the youngest pitchers at the HiA level (Adrian Morejon, Bryan Mata), Sanchez is finding his groove. Over his last three starts, the 6’0″ 185 lb right-hander has posted a 0.96 ERA over 18.2 innings with 24 strikeouts and only 2 walks. He is facing hitters that, on average, are 4 years older than the teenage Dominincan native. He’s limited those advanced bats to a paltry .191 average over that time, and .242 over his seven starts. Though he is the Phillies top prospect, Sanchez has kept himself “under the radar” here at UTRMinors. He’s made multiple mentions, but always came up short on being a UTR Organizational All-Star. He just missed in 2016 during his state-side debut due to limited innings, and his last season promotion to Clearwater hindered him last season. With some pieces currently at Triple-A (Ben Lively, Jake Thompson, Drew Anderson) and UTR stalwarts at Double-A Reading (Franklyn Kilome, Ranger Suarez), there is no need rush Sixto Sanchez to Philadelphia.
TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Matthias Dietz (LoA Delmarva – Baltimore) 22 year old
7 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, 2.74 ERA, Win 5-1
  • Dietz is on the other end of the spectrum of Sanchez. Top draft pick pick (2nd Rd – 2016) and ranked 24th in the Orioles system. He picked up his third straight win last night, as well as his longest outing as a pro. But like Sanchez above, Dietz’ last three starts have been lights out. He’s limited hitters to a .164 batting average while posting a 0.50 ERA with 10 hits, 17 strikeouts, and 5 walks over 18 innings. This is a far cry from his last stint at Delmarva from last season. The 6′ 5″ 220 lb righty went 3-10 with 4.93 ERA and 92 K’s / 50 BB’s in 129.2 innings in first shot a full season ball, after only seeing 18.2 at short-season Aberdeen.

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Under the Radar Hitters of the Day – May 25, 2018

National League – Top Hitter of the Day: 

  • Drew Waters, CF – LoA Rome Braves (ATL) – Sally League 2-3, HR (5), 2B, R, 4RBi
    • The 2017 – 2nd rounder out of Etowah HS (GA) has collected a hit in 13 out of his last 15 games and is currently riding a seven-game hit streak where he’s batting .400 (12-30). Waters may not be named Acuna, Riley or Pache, but do not sleep on him. The 6’2″- 185 lb. switch-hitter was tabbed the purest bat and the speediest prospect of the Braves 2017 draft class by Baseball America. In 29 games so far this season, Water’s has already surpassed his home run and triples total from 2017 (with the GCL and Rookie Danville) and should meet or exceed career highs in every other statistical category as well. 

American League – Top Hitter of the Day: 

  • Ryan Costello, 1B – LoA Clinton LumberKings (SEA) – Midwest League3-3, 2 HR (6,7), 2R, 2RBi

National League: 

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May 24, 2018 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Matt Swarmer (HiA Myrtle Beach – Chicago) 24 year old
6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K, 2.38 ERA
  • Swarmer returned to form last night spinning six scoreless innings and strikeing out seven. Last night’s outing was a bounce-back start, with Swarmer allowing 8 earned runs over his last 12 innings.  The 19th round pick in 2016 out of Kutztown University (PA.) charged out of the gate to begin 2018. The lanky (6′ 5″ 175 lb) right-hander posted a 1.32 ERA with 33 strikeouts and 3 walks in 27.1 innings during his first five starts. That earned him the Top UTR “Minors” National League Pitcher for April 2018.
TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Cristian Alvarado (HiA Frederick – Baltimore) 23 year old
7 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, 3.57 ERA, Win 5-3
  • This is the year for Alvarado to make an impact, and needs to quickly get to Double-A Bowie. He’s repeating at HiA Frederick, where he’s showing slight improvement stat-wise, but more work needs to be done. The 6′ 3″- 175 lb. righty could make a nice back-end rotation type for Baltimore, but needs to strip back his propensity for the fly ball; a rate that currently stands at 60%, and it’s alarming since he allowed 16 home runs last season.  Here at UTRMinors, Alvarado has built an impressive resume. He’s been a UTR Organizational All-Star for three straight seasons (2015, 2016, 2017) and was my “One to Watch” during the 2016 season. I labeled him a “Legit UTR” and “Solid Stash”, but I may pull back on the latter until he can string some consistent starts together for the Keys.

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Under the Radar Hitters of the Day – May 24, 2018

National League – Top Hitter of the Day: 

  • Jared Oliva, CF – HiA Bradenton Marauders (PIT) – Florida State League4-5, HR (5), 3R, 3RBi, 2 SB (10,11) 
    • The 2017 – 7th rounder out of the University of Arizona skipped directly over LoA  and into the pitcher-friendly Florida State League this season after posting a respectable debut for the Short Season West Virginia in 2017. The 6’3″- 187 lb. came out of AU with plus-plus speed, great range in center field and above average power upside. He batted .266 with 30 runs scored, 17 RBi and 15 stolen bases for the Black Bears, but went homerless. This season, Oliva has shown improvement in all facets of this game. In 16 less games, Oliva has already equalled his doubles total from last season, has his first five home runs of his career and is on pace to steal 37 bases. A very under-the-radar prospect who failed to make any mainstream top prospect lists last off-season. 

American League – Top Hitter of the Day:

  • Jo Adell, CF – HiA Inland Empire 66ers (LAA) – Cal League2-4, HR (1/7), 2B, 2R, 2RBi, BB, 2K 

Notes on Wall, Reed….

National League: 

  • Ray-Patrick Didder, SS – HiA Florida FireFrogs (ATL) – Florida State League1-3, HR (2), 2R, 2RBi, BB
  • Garvis Lara, 3B – LoA Greensboro Grasshoppers (MIA) – Sally League2-2, HR (2), 2B, R, RBi, BB, SB (4) 
  • Andres Gimenez, SS – HiA St. Lucie Mets (NYM) – Florida State League3-3, 2B, 2R, BB, 3 SB (13,14,15) 
  • Tres Barrera, C – HiA Potomac Nationals (WAS) – Carolina League2-3, HR (2), 2R, 2RBi, BB
  • Edwin Lora, 2B – HiA Potomac Nationals (WAS) – Carolina League2-3, 2B, 2R, RBi, BB, SB (3) 
  • Luis Garcia, 2B – LoA Hagerstown Suns (WAS) – Sally League3-4, HR (2), 2R, 2RBi
  • Jake Scudder, 1B – LoA Hagerstown Suns (WAS) – Sally League1-3, HR (1), R, 3RBi
  • Taylor Trammell, LF – HiA Daytona Tortugas (CIN) – Florida State League1-3, HR (6), 2R, RBi, BB
  • Weston Wilson, 1B – HiA Carolina Mudcats (MIL) – Carolina League3-5, HR (5), 2B, 2R, 4RBi 
  • Luis Aviles Jr., SS – HiA Carolina Mudcats (MIL) – Carolina League2-5, HR (2), 2R, 2RBi, SB (13) 
  • KJ Harrison, 1B/C – LoA Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (MIL) – Midwest League2-5, HR (2), 2B, 2R, 4RBi, 2K 
  • Tyler Gaffney, LF – HiA Bradenton Marauders (PIT) – Florida State League2-5, 2 3B, 3RBi, 3K 
  • Jason Delay, C – HiA Bradenton Marauders (PIT) – Florida State League3-5, 2 2B, 2R, 2RBi, K 
  • Johan Mieses, RF – HiA Palm Beach Cardinals (STL) – Florida State League1-3, HR (6), 2R, RBi, BB, K 
  • Luis Silverio, RF – HiA Visalia Rawhide (ARI) – Cal League3-5, 2 2B, 2R, 2RBi
  • Forrest Wall, CF – HiA Lancaster Jethawks (COL) – Cal League1-5, 2R, 2K, SB (20) 
    • Normally I wouldn’t place a line such as Wall’s on my daily list, but the Jethawks vs. Lake Elsinore matchup from last night featured two of the top base stealers in not only the Cal League, but in all the minors. Wall stole his 20th base last night and it’s a testament to a kid who never stopped hitting after making a full position shift from second base to centerfield after the 2016 season. This move helped open up his natural speed and as a fairly new defender in center, he’s actually posting a better fielding percentage (.974) than previously at second base (.948). Wall’s 25 steals in 2015 is a personal high, but this year he’s on pace to steal over 60.  
  • Manuel Melendez, LF – HiA Lancaster Jethawks (COL) – Cal League4-5, 2B, R, 3RBi, K
  • Ryan Vilade, SS – LoA Asheville Tourists (COL) – Sally League2-3, HR (1), R, 3RBi, BB, K 
  • Buddy Reed, LF – HiA Lake Elsinore Storm (SD) – Cal League1-3, 3B, 2R, RBi, 2BB, K, 2 SB (20,21) 
    • In the aforementioned blurb on Rockie center fielder Forrest Wall, Reed was/is the fellow top-base stealer in Lake Elsinore’s matchup with Lancaster (in which the Jethawks won 10-7). The 2016 – 2nd rounder out of Florida has already eclipsed his personal season high in steals of 15 (in his debut season with Tri-City of the Northwest League) and is on pace to steal 70, which would match Colorado’s Wes Rogers Cal League total from 2017, one below Travis Jankowski‘s 71 from the 2013 season, yet far from the record-setting 104 bags the Reds Billy Hamilton stole in 2012. 
  • Tirso Ornelas, RF – LoA Fort Wayne TinCaps (SD) – Midwest League3-4, 3B, 2 2B, R, RBi 
  • Sandro Fabian, RF – HiA San Jose Giants (SF) – Cal League3-4, HR (4), 2 2B, 3R, RBi 

American League: 

  • Preston Palmeiro, 2B – HiA Frederick Keys (BAL) – Carolina League2-4, HR (8), R, 3RBi, K 
  • Seamus Curran, DH – LoA Delmarva Shorebirds (BAL) – Sally League2-5, HR (8), 2R, 3RBi, 2K 
  • Jean Carrillo, C – LoA Delmarva Shorebirds (BAL) – Sally League3-4, 2B, 4RBi, K 
  • Charlie Madden, C – LoA Greenville Drive (BOS) – Sally League1-2, HR (1), R, RBi, 2BB
  • Ronaldo Hernandez, DH – LoA Bowling Green Hot Rods (TB) – Midwest League2-3, HR (3), R, RBi, BB
  • Chris Betts, C – LoA Bowling Green Hot Rods (TB) – Midwest League2-3, HR (1), R, 2RBi, BB, K 
  • Tyler Friis, 2B – LoA Lake County Captains (CLE) – Midwest League1-3, HR (2), R, RBi, 2BB
  • Oliver Nunez, 2B – HiA Wilmington Blue Rocks (KC) – Carolina League3-4, HR (1/1), 2R, RBi
  • Travis Jones, LF – LoA Lexington Legends (KC) – Sally League2-5, 2B, 2R, 2RBi, 2K 
  • Nick Pratto, 1B – LoA Lexington Legends (KC) – Sally League1-5, HR (7), R, 3RBi 
  • Shane Carrier, DH – LoA Cedar Rapids Kernels (MIN) – Midwest League1-3, HR (4), R, 2RBi, BB, 2K 
  • Dairon Blanco, LF – HiA Stockton Ports (OAK) – Cal League2-4, 3B, 2RBi, BB, 2 SB (15,16) 
  • Ariel Sandoval, DH – LoA Clinton LumberKings (SEA) – Midwest League2-4, 2 2B, R, 2RBi, BB, K 
  • Austin O’Banion, LF – LoA Hickory Crawdads (TEX) – Sally League2-4, HR (4/5), R, 2RBi, BB, 2K 
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May 23, 2018 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Odalvi Javier (LoA Rome – Atlanta) 21 year old
6 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 10 K, 3.77 ERA, Win 2-1
  • The 2018 “One to Watch” pick for the Braves sets a career-high in strikeouts. Javier is in his first full season after spending three seasons in the rookie leagues.
TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
LHP Zac Lowther (LoA Delmarva – Baltimore) 22 year old
6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 10 K, 1.16 ERA, Win 3-1
  • Lowther was the Top Prospect “Minors” American League Pitcher for April 2018. With his 10 K’s last night, the 2nd round pick from 2017 has already reached double-digit strikeouts in half of his starts this season. Sending batters back to the bench is nothing new for the bulky 6′ 2″ 235 lb lefty. He posted a 12.4 K/9 rate last season (75 K in 54.1 IP) and currently holds a 14.8 rate (51 K in 31 IP) for 2018. An astonishing stat this season is Lowther has only allowed 12 hits thus far in his 6 starts.

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