Friday, July 6, 2012

Minor League Breakdown: The Pitching Prospects

Sorry for being a day late but I couldn't find any time for it yesterday. I do want to point out that - as I did last week with the hitting prospects - I'm not considering the stats of players from short season ball this week. The sample size simply is WAY too small. I'll start to consider them next week.

Overall state of the farm

Despite not even considering yesterdays - for a large part - bad pitching performances, the system as a whole doesn't look very good on the pitching side. The other side of the ball - though - does look quite promising with an encouraging .712 OPS throughout the system.

 OPS-CH and ERA-CH stands for the OPS and ERA change since the last minor league breakdown. Overall ERA and OPS are from ALL affiliates (including DSL, VSL and short season ball affiliates)

Prospects stats overview

Prospects on the rise
  1. Chris Rearick ... Throughout the last 1.5 seasons he hasn't shown any weakness. Over this season: 31.7 K%, 7.9 BB%, 1.88 ERA, 1.66 FIP, .208 AVGagainst. 
  2. Chris Archer ... He showed that he might be ready for the majors. Some more work on his command is needed, though.
  3. Theron Geith ... 1.88 FIP (2.38 FIP on the season), 10.7 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9 over his last 14.1 IP. 
  4. Andrew Bellatti ... Constistently strong performances in medium-to-long relief put him on this list. His last 24.1 IP: 2.49 FIP, 10 K/9, 2.2 BB/9.
  5. Parker Markel ... He is still very inconsistent, but showing higher strikeout-rates as of late.
  6. Honorable mentions:  Brandon Gomes, Bryan Augenstein, Merrill Kelly, Alex Colome, Jacob Partridge, Jason McEachern
Encouraging signs from short-season ball: Geisel De la Cruz (He finally was moved state-side and, despite his mediocre 2nd start, shows much promise), Taylor Guerrieri, Jeff Ames, Blake Snell (44.4 K%!!!),

Prospects to be falling
  1. Braulio Lara ... His last 26.1 IP: 5.1 K/9, 6.8 BB/9, 6.04 FIP.
  2. George Jensen ... His June was horrendous: 13.1 IP, 27 H (!!!), 22 ER, 13 BB, 9 K.
  3. Joseph Cruz ... Once a pitcher with clearly above average control, he can't find the strikezone anymore. 
  4. Neil Schenk and Scott Shuman ... The major league prospects of both of them are quickly fading. One doesn't have enough fire power for the higher levels and the other can't control his fire power.
Discouraging signs from short-season ball: Kevin James (Drafted in '09 with lots of promise, over his pro-career has 39 BB in 40.2 IP).

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:


  1. Very disappointed in Alex Torres this year. Not quite sure what these numbers are saying about him. Could you comment?

    1. I'm very disappointed in him as well. At the bottom of each post you can find the links to the explanations of each stat, but here is some number explanation:

      BB% (average of PA's which end in a walk; average is about 8.5 %) ... 19.2% is very, very high.
      K% (average of PA's which end in a strikeout; average is about 18.5 %) ... 26.8% is very good. The stuff is there, "only" the control is problematic to say the least.
      FIP ... (tries to evaluate a pitching performance alone without the defense behind a pitcher. This statistic has lots of value, but it is not without flaws as it doesn't include the cooperation of a pitcher with his defense ... pitching according to your defense; league average is about 4) ... 4.59 (WAY too high)
      E-F ... (Kind of a factor for luck as well as the team defense and its interaction with the pitcher; It's the difference between the ERA and FIP; average is about 0) ... 1.93
      BABIP ... (The batting average of balls in play against Torres; league average is 0.3) ... 0.364 (He was a tad unlucky; may it be below average defense or simple luck)

    2. Thanks for putting that together for me. As you can see from my game observations of him there's the occasional flash, but subjectively this year is worse than last year. Third hand chatter, Broadcaster Kinas from coach Allen, is that there's some mental issues. But I wonder. He's been on a low pitch count for the last two games (75) which he exceeded in one and was under last night. So possibly some physical issues as well. Sad fact is that the only Bull who shows any promise for the Rays this year would be Archer (among the starters, that is).

    3. You could also count Cobb, who started the year in Durham. But other than that, you are right.

  2. What's the scouting report on Geisel De la Cruz stuff wise?

  3. Season ticket holder for the crabs and I know the numbers are bad for Jensen but he has played in a lot of mop up roles. Heck the crabs are so bad at times that Tinoco an outfielder has pitched.