April 12, 2019 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

 
TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP  Alex Manasa (LoA Greensboro – Pittsburgh) 21 year old
5 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 0.93 ERA
  • This season seems to ring of a theme, this far. Manasa is another pitching convert (outfielder) that the Pirates took a flyer in the 11th round in 2017. The very projectable 6′ 4″ 195 lbs right-hander had very limited experience on the bump during his high school and college days. The work-in-progress Manasa is very athletic and Pirates noticed that he’s already a polished strike thrower that only needs future molding and refinement. Last night against the Yankees LoA club (Charleston), Manasa struck out 11 hitters (career-high) over 4.2 innings, tossing 70% of his pitches for strikes.

TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE

LHP Kris Bubic (LoA Lexington – Kansas City) 21 years old
6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 12 K, 3.27 ERA, Win 1-0
  • Bubic was one of many high-profile collegiate arms that the Royals took in the 2018 draft. The 6 ‘ 3 ” 220 lb left-hander was grabbed in the supplemental 1st round. He set the bar, not only in the Royal system, but in the minors overall, with 12 strikeouts in 6 innings. He struck out the side in 3 innings during his longest outing of his young pro career. Bubic uses a low effort delivery with deception to stature his sinking 90-94 mph fastball, that posted a 12.6 K9 rate last season in 38 innings. His true out-pitch would be the plus change-up that also features late sink.

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April 12, 2019 – Under the Radar Hitters of the Day

*Top Hitter of the Day*

  • Dylan Busby, 3B – Bradenton Marauders – Pittsburgh Pirates – 
    • – 3-3, 2 HR (1,2), 3R, 3RBi – 
      • – Busby came into last night’s game batting .063 in his first five games, but broke out of his 1-16 slump with three hits including his first two home runs on the season. 

California League: 

  • Austin Beck, CF – Stockton Ports – Oakland A’s – 
    • – 2-4, HR (1), 2B, 2R, 4RBi, 2K 

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April 11, 2019 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

 
TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Josiah Gray (LoA Great Lakes – Los Angeles Dodgers) 21 year old
5 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 0.93 ERA
  • In the window of time that I have been tracking pitching prospects, no pitcher has escalated from under the radar as quickly as Josiah Gray. Another arm from a very small college (NAIA – LeMoyne College, NY), the infielder/reliever hybrid showcased his then unnoticed pitching skills during the Summer Cape Cod League. Scouts took notice and the 6′ 1″ 190 lb right-hander went from anonymous, to the Cincinnati Reds 2nd round pick in 2018. In 12 rookie starts at Greeneville, Gray posted a 2.58 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, and striking out 59 over 52.1 innings, and quickly vaulted as one of the top five pitchers in the Reds system. During the off-season the Reds, needing to compete in the strong NL Central, pulled-off a 7-player deal with the Dodgers that included Yasiel Puig. Gray was among those from the Reds that was shipped to the left coast. The 21-year old now finds himself buried in a pitching-rich environment, but once again spotlighted himself yesterday by retiring every batter he faced over 5 innings, with 5 strikeouts. The Dodgers will take their time nurturing Gray, who may develop into a mid-rotation type or late innings reliever. Gray tosses a plus low 90’s fastball with a near plus slider that may suit him best in high leverage situations out of the bullpen.

TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE

RHP Ryne Inman (LoA West Virginia – Seattle) 22 years old
6 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, 3.60 ERA, Win 1-0
  • Seattle made the move with their LoA affiliate from Clinton, Iowa to West Virginia for 2019, and unfortunately  for Ryan Inman, he made the move too. The 6′ 5″ 215 lb righty is repeating LoA after a suboptimal 2018 campaign where he posted a 4-10 record and 4.57 ERA. Drafted from high school in the 15th round (2015), Inman is entering his age year 23 season and probably hoped for a shot at HiA Modesto in 2019, after this, his third LoA stint. It may still come, as last night he threw 6 innings of 2-hit shutout ball and striking out eight. It may be an uphill climb for Inman, as his progression through the system has not shown much improvement, stat-wise.

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April 11, 2019 – Under the Radar Hitters of the Day

*Top Hitter of the Day*

  • Luis Robert, CF – Winston-Salem Dash – Chicago White Sox – – 3-5, HR (5), 3B, 3R, 2RBi, K – – Ok, this is getting a bit insane. Robert earns another Top Hitter of the Day honor and who can blame us for choosing him. The guy has been absolute fire since opening pitch of opening day, and last night was no exception, as he rapped out another three hits versus Potomac (WAS) pitching. Robert hit his first triple of the year along with his fifth homer, which ties him with Houston Triple-A prospect Yordan Alvarez and Padres AA slugger Brad Zunica for the overal minor league lead. He leads the Carolina League in homers, total bases and slugging percentage; and it’s only a matter of time until the organization promotes him to Double-A. Not only because of what Robert is doing at the plate, but what Birmingham hitters aren’t. The Barons currently sit at 3-4 on the season, have a .179 team batting average and the entire roster has one solitary home run, which belongs to 26-year-old journeyman catcher Yermin Mercedes

California League: 

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April 10, 2019 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

 
TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Alvaro Seijas (LoA Peoria – St Louis) 20 year old
6 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, Win 1-1
  • Peoria gets another pitcher for the top UTRMinors performer of the day. Seijas has only found his name called on these pages twice since becoming an International signee in 2016, August 2017 and April 2018. A closer review as to why, finds that the 6′ 1″ 175 lbs right-hander should have remained in the DSL to gain innings, before arriving in the United States. This is uncharacteristic for the Cardinals’ organizational, but in their defense, Seijas was touted amongst other pitchers in his International class. In his state-side debut with Johnson City, the right-hander posted a 4.97 ERA and 11.2 H9 rate, but promising 2.8 BB9 and 9.0 K9 rates as an 18-year old. The next season saw those bad peripherals remain steady and the sharp decline where he excelled while in the Appy League, including a 39.9 % groundball rate. One would have looked for a demotion to State College, when the short-season kicked off in June, but the Cards struck with the young Venezuelan native, to provide him a full season at Peoria. Lessons learned perhaps, as Seijas threw six shutouts innings late night with six strikeouts, the most since late July 2018. Sejias is still listed as one of the youngest arms in the Midwest League…so patience is in order.

TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE

RHP Michael Baumann (HiA Frederick – Baltimore) 23 years old
5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 10 K
  • Baumann enjoyed a breakout season in 2018 and was nearly perfect during his HiA debut. The 6′ 4″ 225 lbs right-hander was my 2018 Orioles #2 UTR Organizational All-Star and, at the time of its writing, I thought the 23 year-old would crack Baltimore’s Top 10 prospect list. Baseball America lists him at the #21 slot and MLBPipeline at #26, on the top go-to sites. Its evident that his lack of control is the missing component. Baumann matched his career-high last night with 10 K’s over 5 innings, and only allowing one hit. The 3rd round pick from 2017 possesses a mid 90’s 4-seamer with sink and command.
LoA Mentions – Starters
 
RHP Hans Crouse (LoA Hickory – Texas) 20 years old
5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K, Win 1-0  
 
RHP Clay Chandler (LoA Beloit – Oakland) 24 years old
6 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K 
 
LHP Ryan Weathers (LoA Fort Wayne – San Diego) 19 years old
6 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 8 K, Win 1-0 
 
LHP Adam Wolf (LoA West Michigan – Detroit) 22 years old
6 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K
 
RHP Josh Roberson (LoA Clinton – Miami) 23 years old
5 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 K
 
RHP Ryan Weiss (LoA Kane County – Arizona) 22 years old
4 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K

HiA Mentions – Starters
 
RHP Tyler Phillips (HiA Down East – Texas) 21 years old
7 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, Win 1-0
 
RHP Spencer Howard (HiA Clearwater – Philadelphia) 22 years old
6 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, Win 1-1
 
LHP Tarik Skubal (HiA Lakeland – Detroit) 22 years old
5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K

 
National League – Relief
 
RHP Nick Mears (LoA Greensboro – Pittsburgh) 22 years old
2 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K
 
American League – Relief
 
RHP Shawn Semple (LoA Charleston – New York Yankees) 23 years old
 4 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 11 K
  • The Charleston rotation is currently full with 6 pitchers making starts thus far. Semple has made two appearances and has posted this line: 9 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 21 K, 1-0, 1.00 ERA. The 11th round pick from 2017 made 10 starts in 2018 across 3 levels.

 

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April 10, 2019 – Under the Radar Hitters of the Day

*Top Hitter of the Day* 

  • Luis Campusano, C – Lake Elsinore Storm – San Diego Padres – – 4-5, HR (1), 2B, 4R, 4RBi (Game 1) – Although catchers Austin Hedges, Francisco Mejia and Austin Allen may get the lion’s share of attention, Campusano’s performance so far in the Cal League is turning that spotlight a bit more in his direction. The 20-year-old Augusta, Georgia native leads the Cal League in hits (14), total bases (20), on-base percentage (.594) and has posted one more walk than strikeouts this far (5:4). What has the organization and prospect hounds most excited is the raw power and arm strength Campusano brings to the table, but he possesses much more, and he has the overall skills to rocket up catching prospect boards. Place him on all UTR catcher watch lists. 

California League: 

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April 9, 2019 – Under the Radar Pitcher Performances

A long road trip today to the southern tier of New York kept me away from the boxscores this morning, so thanks for your patience for the late posting.
 
 
TOP NL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE
 
RHP Tommy Parsons (LoA Peoria – St Louis) 23 year old
8 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, Win 2-0
  • We write quite often about kids being drafted from high school or perennial college powerhouses, and all tend to have potential high ceilings. With the season in its infancy, I have already touched on a pitcher from a D-II school and an undrafted free agent. Parsons hits the rare daily double by being an undrafted free agent, coming out from a D-III school (Adrian College, MI). The 6′ 4″ 185 lb right-hander, seeing his first full season, received a mention on opening day and now gets top billing for his second start of 2019. The 23 year-old marked a career-high with 8 innings last night, and hasn’t allowed an earned run in 13 innings over his two starts. Dating back to his last three starts from 2018 at Johnson City (Appy League), Parsons has only allowed 2 earned runs in 33 total innings, with 2 walks and 23 strikeouts. This isn’t uncharted waters for Parsons, as he posted a 10.4 K/BB ratio (260 K in 269.2 IP) and a paltry 0.83 BB9 rate (25 walks) while at Adrian College. He commands a 3-pitch mix with a focus on his low 90’s fastball and change-up, which is his best offering.

TOP AL UTR PITCHING PERFORMANCE

RHP Ljay Newsome (HiA Modesto – Seattle) 22 years old
5 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 11 K
  • Newsome reaches double-digit K’s for the first time in his pro career ( 5 seasons). I was surprised to see the 26th round pick in 2015 receiving a HiA assignment to begin the season. The 2-time UTR-OAS recipient (Legit UTR) had a strong 2018 season at Modesto, despite posting a 11.0 H9 and 1.6 HR9 rates in 26 starts. The 22 year-old even saw an early season start at Triple-A Tacoma. The soft-tossing righty has excellent command and is moving the ball around the zone, nibbling at the corners. Last night’s start backs-up his opening day outing where he struck out nine over five innings. Newsome can’t be found on any publication’s top 30 list for the Mariners, a system that’s on the weak side in regards to pitching. My system likes him and his 6.89 K/BB ratio in 354.2 career innings, and he shouldn’t be long for a test with Double-A Arkansas.
LoA Mentions – Starters
 
RHP Logan Gilbert (LoA West Virginia – Seattle) 21 years old
5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K, Win 1-0  
 
RHP Chase Cohen (LoA Beloit – Oakland) 19 years old
6 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 6 K 
 
RHP Alan Strong (LoA Bowling Green – Tampa Bay) 22 years old
6 IP, 2 H, 0 ER,  BB, 9 K, Win 1-0 
 
LHP Braeden Ogle (LoA Greensboro – Pittsburgh) 21 years old
5 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
 
RHP Ofelky Peralta (LoA Delmarva – Baltimore) 21 years old
3.2 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 10 K

HiA Mentions – Starters
 
RHP Riley O’Brien (HiA Charlotte – Tampa Bay) 24 years old
7 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 8 K, Win 1-0
 
RHP Casey Mize (HiA Lakeland – Detroit) 21 years old
6 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K
Logan 
RHP Rony Garcia (HiA Tampa – New York Yankees) 21 years old
5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K

 
National League – Relief
 
RHP Kyler Stout (HiA Visalia – Arizona) 24 years old
2 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K
 
American League – Relief
 
RHP Connor Law (LoA Lansing – Toronto) 24 years old
 2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K

 

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