I was originally going to run this on Friday, but with the Dusty Baker firing I decided to just let that news run the day so that the stuff here wouldn’t just go relatively unnoticed.
Thursday Baseball America released the California League Top 20 prospects list. There was only one Red on the list, Yorman Rodriguez. Rodriguez came in at #13 on the list. Reading the scouting report there are some things in there that I don’t doubt were correct, but I would also love to see how those comments stack up with what scouts saw when he was with Pensacola. Rodriguez seemed to turn on a switch (not at will, but something just clicked, so to speak) on June 8th. From the 8th-16th he tore apart the California League and was promoted after that last game to AA. He held his own there as well. If you look at his season pre-June 8th and post June 8th it is like looking at two completely different players.
In the California League chat (subscription required) Carlos Contreras was addressed briefly as a future back end of the bullpen reliever with plus velocity. Sounds in line with what most expect from him. I would honestly like to see him looked at as a starter against next year, but it doesn’t seem like there is much thought about him as a future starter.
Earlier this week John Sickels began looking at the rookies from each playoff team and he covered the Reds here. He was most impressed with Tony Cingrani, but looks a little bit at each guy.
On Wednesday I wrote about speedsters in the minor leagues for 80grade.com. I looked at the rate of which players with at least 45 steals (Billy Hamilton and Junior Arias made the cut among Reds players) turned infield groundballs and bunts into hits. Hamilton, despite all of his speed, didn’t rank at the top of the list in either category or in the combined category. He was above-average in both though. Junior Arias was among the best on infield hits and hit bunt for a hit average was 0.02% below average. Overall with the two rates combined Hamilton was 3rd and Arias was 5th among qualified batters.