The third minor league hitting prospects breakdown is up and recently things have been looking well in the minors. The four full-season ball teams have gone a combined 15:8 over the last 6 and 30:19 over the last 13 days. Especially the strong pitching over the last 6 days can be credited for this excellent spurt. The overall ERA decreased from a weak 4.37 to a better (while still not good) 4.14. The hitting prospects as a group have improved as well. They - led by Josh Sale and the Bowling Green Hot Rods - increased their OPS to .698.
OPS-CH and ERA-CH stands for the OPS and ERA change since the last minor league breakdown.
Prospects stats overview
All of a sudden, the rightfully criticized last three draft years are looking better. Just take a look at the prospects on the rise-section below. Keep in mind that I use FanGraphs as source and therefore all of yesterday's (in a lot of cases excellent) performances are not taken into account yet (e.g.: Ryan Brett going 5 for 5, Drew Vettleson 2 of 3 with 2 walks, Mahtook, Dietrich, Allen, Nommensen and Rogers rocking in Port Charlotte's victory, ...). Here is the data:
(click on the image for a better view)
Prospects on the rise
- Joshua Sale ... Who really expected such a jump? And according to Sale himself, "only" some simple mind-approach changes have been the trigger for the jump in quality. See the result: 18.9 BB%, 15.1 K%, .536 wOBA, 1.266 OPS, .425 ISO and not even a really high BABIP (.321) are mind-blowing. Despite the small sample size, the improvement in his approach seems to be legit.
- Jeff Malm ... He continues to produce. He hits for some power and for a solid average, has an okay approach at the plate and is trending upwards. A 1.002 OPS and .427 wOBA over the last 50 PA's are very good. The BABIP is high, though.
- Mayobanex Acosta ... With an OPS of nearly .900 (.391 wOBA) between Port Charlotte and Durham on the season, he is one of the bright spots behind the plate in-between all those injuries.
- Mikie Mahtook ... Even without yesterday's performance (5 PA, 2H, 1st HR of the season, 1BB, 0K), things are trending upwards. A .411 wOBA and .911 OPS over his last 44 PA's are excellent.
- Derek Dietrich ... Dietrich is another of yesterday's top performers with 1 HR and 2 Doubles. But, even without yesterday, he consistently improves (.752 OPS after 59 PA's, .780 OPS after 128 PA's and .804 OPS after 173 PA's) during the season.
Prospects to be falling
- Reid Brignac ... Have we already seen the last AB of Reid Brignac in the majors? While his defense is good, he needs to not just tinker or adjust, but fully rearrange his approach.
- Taylor Motter ... While his plate discipline is okay, much more was expected out of Motter after an exceptional '11 season in short season ball.
- Hak-Yu Lee ... While his MIF-partner Tyler Bortnick is slowly turning it around (.389 wOBA in his last 53 PA's), the consensus pre-season Top 100 MiL-Prospect Hak-Yu Lee doesn't get going. A wOBA below .300 is not what we expected out of him.
- Tyler Goeddel ... While still having solid numbers overall, he couldn't sustain his early season success streak. A .541 OPS and .281 wOBA since the last MiL-Hitting Breakdown are not good. Nevertheless, with such a young prospect, struggles are to be expected. His BB/K ratio - at least - is slowly but steadily improving.
All of the stats provided above are excluding the stats from the previous day. I preferrably use FanGraphs as source for the stats. Click on each stat for its explanation: