TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE RHP Dustin Beggs (LoA Greensboro – Miami) 23 years old 6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K Season Stats: 1-1, 1.80 ERA, 15 IP, 9 H, 3 ER, 4 BB, 13 K in 3 starts
- Beggs was drafted by the Marlins in the deep rounds (32nd) back in 2015, but decided to return to the University of Kentucky to complete his Senior season. What a great decision, as the right-hander had a breakout season. He made 14 starts going 9-2 with a 3.01 ERA, 0.95 WHIP and posted very good control numbers (1.4 BB/9). The Marlins came calling again in 2016 and took Beggs in the 16th round. His debut season was spent as a reliever in the Marlins rookie leagues, with Beggs making 17 appearances (3 starts). Although he got hit-around (12.4 H/9), Beggs again displayed stellar control limiting 5 walks over 32 innings, with 20 strikeouts.
- The Cubs top pitching prospect (#4) faced two over the minimum before being pulled after six innings; his longest outing since being drafted in the 6th round in 2015.
- Fernandez gave Beggs a run for the top spot, but coming in as the Cards #21 prospect dropped him to this mention. Fernandez threw 8 scoreless innings and retired the first 19 batters he faced. It was almost a year to the day (April 23, 2016) since the 6′ 1″- 180 lb. righty went into the 8th inning. The 2015 and 2016 UTR Organizational All-Star comes with high upside and can hit triple digits on the gun.
- Mills qualifies as an Under the Radar-type and no doubt put together an outing deserving to be ranked on top. Taken in the 2014 draft (18th round), the lefty has improved his peripherals over the last 3 seasons, especially his walk rate. McKenzie is off to a great start in his first taste of full-season ball.
- The 18th round pick in 2015 is beginning to turn heads, as he is becoming a regular here.
TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE LHP Bernardo Flores ( LoA Kannapolis – Chicago White Sox) 21 years old 6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K Season Stats: 2-1, 3.45 ERA, 15.2 IP, 16 , 6 ER, 4 BB, 14 K in 3 starts
- It’s McCormick Field, it’s 70 degrees, it’s night, with first pitch at 7:08pm, and I’m wearing sunglasses. Well Ok, I wasn’t there and it’s doubtful that Flores was wearing his thick framed shades. But researching this kid…I have to see him in-person when he does. And why not, he’s was drafted out the University of Southern California, so the swagger is there. Check Scout.com for a nice scouting report along with an action pic when he was taken in the 7th round last June. He had a nice breakout during his pro debut with the AZL Sox and Great Falls in the Pioneer League. The tall lanky lefty possesses a strong, quick arm that can reach his fastball in the upper 90’s, but best controlled in the low to mid 90’s. He posted a 60% groundball rate last season and a 7.2 K/9 rate with his swing-and-miss change-up.