TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE RHP Pedro Vasquez (HiA Bradenton – Pittsburgh) 21 years old 7 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, Win Seasons Stats: 5-3, 1.97 ERA, 59.1 IP, 53 H, 13 ER, 10 BB, 44 K in 11 appearances with 10 starts
- Vasquez was one of the final pieces in a Seattle trade with Pittsburgh for Arquimedes Caminero, with Jake Brentz the other player named. Not sure how that deal broke down or why would the Mariners want to part with Vasquez. The 2015 UTR Organizational All-Star has been solid since coming from the DSL in 2016. He got a taste of LoA Ball after five AZL Mariner appearances (4 starts), posting a 5-4 record with a 2.26 ERA and 52 strikeouts/9 walks. Those numbers were on-par with his DSL stats in that he held a 7.0 K9 and 1.0 BB9 rates over 91 innings in 15 starts. The Pirates evidently liked what they seen in the 6’4″ 190 lb right-hander with a HiA Bradenton assignment, his first season with the club. Vasquez is having a breakout season thus far and could jettison up the organizational rankings, if he could just miss more bats. Maybe that trend is beginning with his 8 strikeouts last night, the most since coming to the U.S. He had 9 K’s over 5.2 innings in a 2015 DSL start. Of Vasquez’ 11 appearances, his name has appeared on my daily spreads 8-times and this is first NL Pitcher of the Day. After getting stretched out to begin the season, the Dominican native has only once allowed more than 2 earned runs in any start, going at least six innings in 6 of his 10 starts.
- The Mets UTR Top Prospect Pitcher for April gave up some hits last night, but posted a personal best 10 K’s.
- The 2014 UTR Organizational All-Star is beginning to catch fire. In his last 3 starts, Gonzalez has only allowed 3 earned runs in 20 innings.
TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE RHP Anthony Castro (LoA West Michigan – Detroit) 22 years old 7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 12 K, Win Season Stats: 4-1, 2.60 ERA, 45 IP, 33 H, 13 ER, 18 BB, 47 K in 9 starts
- In back-to-back starts, Castro has been the UTR AL Pitcher of the Day, thanks to 24 strikeouts over his last 13 innings. He matched his career-high 12 K’s last night against Great Lakes (LAD). Castro could be starting to his stride after missing the 2015 season and spending the last two seasons in the Gulf Coast League. Castro has been attacking the zone and throwing strikes early in getting hitter behind the count. The 6’0″ 174 lb right-hander had plus velocity before having Tommy John surgery in 2015 and it might be on its way back. Despite his thin frame, Castro has an easy, repeatable delivery and throws a heavy fastball (low 90’s) with late life. He also has a near plus breaker that, in addition to racking up the K’s, has assisyed in generating a 55% groundball rate. Going back over his last 24.2 innings, Castro has only allowed 4 earned runs.
- Hickman was taken in the 7th round in 2015 from the University of Iowa and made his pro debut last night. Missed all that time due to Tommy John surgery and went back to school to complete his degree. The White Sox are all-in with 6’5″ 225 lb righty. They nurtured Hickman through their ACE program (Amateur City Elite) when the Chicago native was between 12-17 years old.
- Wells returns from a short DL stint
- Another hard luck loss for the once 2014 UTR Organizational All-Star. Thorpe has missed the last two seasons due to injury.
- Second start by Burrows where he went last least 6 innings, allowing only one earned run, and taking a loss. Burrows has made two AL Pitcher of the Day mentions – April 16th & April 21st. Those secured him a spot as the UTR Top Pitching Prospect for April. The 2016 UTR Organizational All-Star has only allowed 4 ER over is last 6 starts (31 IP).