redsminorleagues.com http://redsminorleagues.com Wed, 29 Jul 2015 04:08:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 Reds Minor League Game Review – 7/28/15 http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/29/reds-minor-league-game-review-72815/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/29/reds-minor-league-game-review-72815/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 04:08:11 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13398 Robert Stephenson dominated over eight innings on Tuesday night for the Louisville Bats in a win.

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Louisville won 3-1. Box Score

  • Jermaine Curtis went 1-4 with a double.
  • Kyle Waldrop went 1-4 with a run.
  • Ramon Cabrera went 2-3 with a double, walk and a run.
  • Josh Satin went 2-4 with 2 RBI.
  • Juan Silva went 1-2 with 2 walks, a steal and a run.
  • Robert Stephenson threw 8 shutout innings with a walk and 10 strikeouts.

Game Notes

Tuesday night was the Robert Stephenson show in Louisville and  we were all invited, but only 7,735 showed up at Louisville Slugger Field to watch it. There was a pitchers duel for a while as Stephenson and Charlotte starter Erik Johnson both had shutouts going through four innings, but the Bats got the first run of the game in the top of the 5th when an error helped push the go-ahead run across for Louisville. That was all that Stephenson needed as he dominated for eight shutout innings with just one walk, to the first batter of the game, to go along with 10 strikeouts. In the bottom of the 8th inning the Bats padded their lead with two runs on a Josh Satin single that brought in Kyle Waldrop and Ramon Cabrera. Charlotte would score a run in the top of the 9th, but couldn’t complete the comeback.

Pensacola lost 8-3. Box Score

  • Bryson Smith went 1-2 with a steal.
  • Beau Amaral went 1-2.
  • Juan Duran went 2-4 with 2 doubles and a run.
  • Seth Mejias-Brean went 2-4 with a double, run and 2 RBI.
  • Wandy Peralta allowed a run in 3 innings with 2 walks and 2 strikeouts.
  • Kevin Shackelford threw a shutout inning with 2 walks and a strikeout.

Game Notes

Pensacola jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the 2nd inning when Seth Mejias-Brean doubled in Marquez Smith and Juan Duran. He scored later in the inning on a ground out. They held that lead until the bottom of the 4th and that’s when things got out of hand as the Lookouts scored seven runs and they added another run in the 4th, taking an 8-3 lead. Neither team would score moving forward as the Blue Wahoos dropped to 17-14 in the second half.

Daytona lost 8-4. Box Score

  • Junior Arias went 1-4 with a steal (25) and a run.
  • Alex Blandino went 1-4 with a double and a run.
  • Taylor Sparks went 3-4 with a double, home run (9), 2 runs and 2 RBI.
  • Joe Hudson went 2-4 with a double and an RBI.
  • Ronald Bueno went 1-4 with a double.
  • Nolan Becker threw 1.2 perfect innings with 2 strikeouts.

Game Notes

The game was a back-and-forth through the 5th inning as the Mets took a 1-run lead, then Daytona would tie it, then the Mets would gain a 1-run lead and Daytona would tie it. That changed in the bottom of the 5th when St. Lucie scored three runs. Holding a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the 8th, the Mets put the game away with a 3-run rally. Taylor Sparks had a big night, hitting a double and a home run as he continued a strong July.

Dayton lost 6-5. Box Score

  • Ty Washington went 1-4 with a double, walk, RBI and a run.
  • Garrett Boulware went 2-4.
  • Avain Rachal went 1-3 with a walk and a run.
  • Argenis Aldazoro went 3-4 with a double and a run.
  • Brennan Bernardino threw 2.1 hitless innings with a walk and 2 strikeouts.

Game Notes

Dayton grabbed an early 2-0 lead in the 1st inning. A bases loaded walk to Aristides Aquino brought in Ty Washington to make it 1-0. Cory Thompson scored on the next play thanks to a throwing error, making it 2-0. Fort Wayne would take the lead in the bottom of the 1st though, scoring three runs. The Dragons would take the lead back in the top of the 4th with a 3-run rally. Two runs scored on a a play where the pitcher threw to second on a pick off, but it went into center and then by the center fielder. A third run would score on a Ty Washington double. The TinCaps would come through with a 3-run rally of their own in the 6th and take a 6-5 lead. Neither team would score moving forward as Fort Wayne held on for the win.

Billings lost 3-0. Box Score

  • Kevin Garcia went 2-4.
  • Brantley Bell went 1-3.
  • Ty Boyles allowed 1 earned (2 total) in 7.2 innings with 7 strikeouts.

Game Notes

Great Falls scored an unearned run in the 1st inning off of Ty Boyles, but he clamped down from there and had the longest outing of his career as he allowed just one earned run over 7.2 innings. That lowered his ERA to 1.88 on the year. Unfortunately the Mustangs weren’t able to capitalize on the strong start as they managed just three hits on the night.

AZL Reds had the night off.

7/29/15 Game Preview

Team 1st half 2nd half Time (EST) Probable Box Score Listen Live Watch Live
Louisville 51-54 N/A 7:05pm TBA Here Here Here
Pensacola 25-43 17-14 7:15pm Adleman Here Here Here
Daytona 37-33 17-13 10:30am Garrett Here Here N/A
Dayton 39-31 16-16 7:05pm Antone Here Here Here
Billings 17-20 0-1 9:05pm Romero Here Here Here
Arizona 13-17 N/A 10:00pm Here N/A N/A

Top 25 Daily Rundown (Top 25 based on the Midseason Rankings)

Rank Player LVL Performance
1 Robert Stephenson AAA 8IP, 3H, 0ER, 1BB, 10K.
2 Jesse Winker AA 0-3, BB.
3 Nick Travieso A+ DNP – Injured
4 Yorman Rodriguez AAA DNP – Injured
5 Sal Romano A+ 5.1IP, 9H, 5ER, 1BB, 3K.
6 Amir Garrett A+ DNP
7 Raisel Iglesias MLB DNP
8 Tyler Stephenson BIL 0-2, 2BB, 2K.
9 Phillip Ervin A+ 1-4, 2K.
10 Alex Blandino A+ 1-4, 2B, run, 2K.
11 Jon Moscot MLB DNP – Injured
12 Aristides Aquino A 0-3, BB, RBI.
13 Kyle Waldrop AAA 1-4, run, K.
14 Jonathon Crawford A+ DNP – Injured
15 Mark Armstrong A DNP – Injured
16 Tyler Mahle A DNP
17 Junior Arias A+ 1-4, steal, run, K.
18 Tejay Antone A DNP
19 Nick Howard A+ DNP – Injured
20 Gavin LaValley A 0-4, BB, 3K.
21 Wyatt Strahan A 4IP, 8H, 3ER, 2BB, 5K.
22 Luis Gonzalez A DNP
23 Sebastian Elizalde A+ 1-4.
24 Seth Mejias Brean AA 2-4, 2B, run, 2 RBI, K.
25 Carlton Daal A+ DNP

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Just how valuable are hitting prospects in the game today? http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/28/just-how-valuable-are-hitting-prospects-in-the-game-today/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/28/just-how-valuable-are-hitting-prospects-in-the-game-today/#comments Tue, 28 Jul 2015 19:55:57 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13395 Has Major League Baseball front offices upped the value of hitting prospects with the new era of pitching taking over?

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Major League Baseball is in the final week of the trade deadline and while there has been a lot of rumors, there have only been four big trades made. Johnny Cueto and Ben Zobrist have gone to the Royals. The Rockies and Blue Jays swapped shortstops Troy Tulowitzki and Jose Reyes along with some prospects and LaTroy Hawkins. The Oakland Athletics sent Scott Kazmir to Houston. That’s it, at least as I began typing this article. In all four deals there were prospects that were moved. Let’s take a look at which prospects those were:

  • LHP Brandon Finnegan
  • LHP Cody Reed
  • LHP John Lamb
  • RHP Jeff Hoffman
  • RHP Miguel Castro
  • RHP Jesus Tinoco
  • RHP Daniel Mengden
  • C Jacob Nottingham
  • LHP Sean Manaea
  • RHP Aaron Brooks

Notice anything about that list? There’s one position player on it. Rumor after rumor we hear that teams simply aren’t trading top hitting prospects. Jacob Nottingham went to Oakland from the Astros in the Scott Kazmir deal. He’s a borderline Top 100 prospect at this point.

Baseball is in a period where it seems that everyone has pitching prospects and most big league teams have good pitching (the ERA of MLB is currently 3.80). With the advanced data out there it simply gives pitching a big leg up on hitters these days and it’s really shown up over the last few seasons. The trade deadline so far has played out that way as teams are more than willing to give up pitching prospects, but seem to be hoarding their hitters.

The Chicago Cubs and Houston Astros have, over the past few years, rebuilt their teams through the farm system by picking up and hoarding position players through trades and the draft. Both teams are now reaping the benefits of that approach at the big league level. There have been some growing pains along the way, but both are built with very young players on the offensive side of the ball. Sports are a copycat industry and it would appear that everyone wants to follow that plan now that we are in an era where very good hitters are tough to come by, while good pitchers are seemingly everywhere.

With all of that said, are we now in an era where position player prospects just hold more value than their pitching counterparts? I think you can say yes, but that we also don’t know just how long that will last. I do think that all of the technology in baseball certainly benefits run prevention than run production. I can’t recall who it was, but I want to say that it was one of the Pittsburgh Pirates coaches who said that a pitcher can go look at the data, and combined with the ability to shift the defense, if he can execute his pitches to a players weakness he’s going to win that battle and he can get that information in a matter of seconds and doesn’t have to change anything mechanically to do so. Where as a hitter can look at the data and find out his weaknesses in a matter of seconds, but it may take him months in order to fix the mechanical issue that is related to that weakness in order to fix it, if he’s even able to.

Baseball could make some changes to perhaps swing things a little bit more towards offense. Fixing the strikezone would be a big one. It keeps getting bigger, and it’s getting larger on the low end, resulting in less power. Automating the strikezone, while unlikely, could also help as it would allow batters to not have to constantly adjust to different strikezones for different umpires, pitchers or catchers. Lowering the mound has been done in the past, and while I think it’s unlikely to see it again, it’s certainly possible. Baseball could eliminate the shift, which would make a small dent in things, but would at least make things a little easier for left handed hitters compared to the almost inability to shift against their right handed counterparts. Changing the seams on the baseball worked wonders for college baseball this past season in improving offense.

Maybe none of those things happen, but even if they do, we are probably going to continue to see baseball leaning towards being more pitching friendly than not, which is going to make premium caliber hitters a rare breed and thus very valuable. There has been a shift in baseball and the idea of hoarding pitching simply isn’t as good of an idea as it used to be. It’s tough to put an actual value on any given prospect, but it seems that the front offices around Major League Baseball have certainly pushed the value of hitters up compared to just a few years ago if the trade deadline has shown us anything.

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KJ Franklin continues his 2015 turnaround for the Billings Mustangs http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/28/kj-franklin-continues-his-2015-turnaround-for-the-billings-mustangs/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/28/kj-franklin-continues-his-2015-turnaround-for-the-billings-mustangs/#comments Tue, 28 Jul 2015 14:00:12 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13382 Cincinnati Reds 2013 2nd round draft pick KJ Franklin has quietly put together a good 2015 season for the Billings Mustangs.

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Last season the Cincinnati Reds send 2013 2nd round pick KJ Franklin to Billings to play for the Mustangs. To say that the season was a struggle would be an understatement. Franklin hit .211/.241/.325 with seven walks and 65 strikeouts.

There wasn’t much to look at, at least statistically, and find a bright spot. He walked in just 2.8% of his plate appearances. He struck out in 26.1% of his plate appearances. Neither of those rates were good. Power, supposed to be one of his calling cards, wasn’t there as he posted an isolated power (SLG-AVG) of just .114.

After a rough season it was back to the drawing board for Franklin. I spoke with him right as spring training was finishing up and he mentioned how good he felt and all of the work he had been putting in. It didn’t result in his promotion to Dayton and he remained back in extended spring training and when June rolled around, he was sent back to Billings.

The second trip through the league has worked wonders for the corner infielder, who has been splitting time between first and third base. Two weeks ago I wrote about some of the mechanical changes he has made for subscribers, so you should go check that out if you haven’t yet. Those changes and a better approach at the plate has led to his overall line jumping to a better than league average .268/.362/.451 through 94 plate appearances.

Let’s take a look at his peripherals compared between the two season:

BB K IsoP
2014 2.8% 26.1% 114
2015 9.6% 21.3% 183

His walk rate has more than tripled, going from a well below-average rate to an above-average rate. The strikeout rate has dropped 18%, going from a below-average rate to an average rate. His Isolated Power has gone up by 61% and in the process jumped from a below-average rate to an above-average rate.

Just about every statistical category that Franklin could improve in, he has. And he’s improved in them significantly. From June 27th through July 4th Franklin was out of the lineup. Since his return he’s been even better than his overall line, hitting .317/.377/.540 over those 18 games with 10 extra-base hits, six walks and just 12 strikeouts.

It’s still early in the season for Billings, as they are just finishing up the 1st half of their season. But the 1st half of the year has been a massive turnaround for the Cincinnati Reds former 2nd round draft pick. If Franklin can keep doing what he has been doing in the 2nd half with the Mustangs he’s going to really start to get back into the prospect conversation within the organization as he will rise back up the prospect lists.

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Reds Minor League Game Review – 7/27/15 http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/28/reds-minor-league-game-review-72715/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/28/reds-minor-league-game-review-72715/#comments Tue, 28 Jul 2015 06:13:09 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13392 Alex Blandino had three hits on Monday night for the Daytona Tortugas.

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Louisville lost 7-1. Box Score

  • Hernan Iribarren went 3-4 with a run.
  • Irving Falu went 1-3 with a walk.
  • Kyle Waldrop went 2-4.
  • Ryan LaMarre went 1-3 with a walk and a steal.
  • Donovan Hand allowed a run in 3 innings with a strikeouts.
  • Carlos Contreras threw a perfect inning with 2 strikeouts.
  • Collin Balester threw a perfect inning with a strikeout.

Game Notes

The game got out to a rough start for the Bats as Charlotte scored in the first four innings, taking a 5-0 lead. Louisville wasn’t able to recover as they fell to 50-54 on the season.

Pensacola had the night off.

Daytona lost 2-1. Box Score

  • Alex Blandino went 3-4 with 2 doubles.
  • Daniel Pigott went 1-3 with a walk.
  • Nick Routt allowed a run in 5.1 innings with a walk and 3 strikeouts.
  • Scott Brattvet threw a shutout inning.
  • Carlos Gonzalez allowed a run in 2 innings with a strikeout.

Game Notes

Daytona took a 1-0 lead in the top of the 2nd when Sebastian Elizalde scored on a sac fly by Junior Arias, but the lead didn’t last long as St Lucie responded in the bottom of the inning. The game remained tied until the bottom of the 9th when the Mets finally broke through with a walk-off win.

Dayton had the night off.

Billings was rained out. The game won’t be made up.

AZL Reds won 13-4. Box Score

  • Miles Gordon went 1-5 with a walk, steal and a run.
  • Jose Siri went 1-3 with a triple, run and 2 RBI.
  • Michael Beltre went 2-2 with 2 RBI and a run.
  • James Vasquez went 0-2 with 2 walks and a run.
  • Blake Butler went 2-5 with 2 runs.
  • Sammy Diaz (rehab) went 3-4 with a double, 2 runs and 3 RBI.
  • Montrell Marshall went 3-4 with a double, run and 2 RBI.
  • Francis Guerrero went 3-5 with a run and an RBI.
  • Alberti Chavez went 2-5 with a double, run and an RBI.
  • Francis Azcona went 1-1 with 2 runs.
  • Wendolyn Bautista threw 1.1 shutout innings with 3 walks and a strikeout.
  • Israel Cuevas threw 3 hitless innings with a walk and 3 strikeouts.
  • Miguel Aguilar threw a hitless inning with a walk and 2 strikeouts.

Game Notes

The Reds struck first, taking a 4-0 lead in the 2nd inning. The Indians would cut the lead in half in the top of the 3rd. In the 5th inning the Reds padded their lead with two more runs and they really put the game out of reach in the bottom of the 7th inning with six runs.

7/28/15 Game Preview

Team 1st half 2nd half Time (EST) Probable Box Score Listen Live Watch Live
Louisville 50-54 N/A 7:05pm Stephenson Here Here Here
Pensacola 25-43 17-13 7:15pm Wright Here Here Here
Daytona 37-33 17-12 6:30pm Romano Here Here N/A
Dayton 39-31 16-15 7:05pm TBA Here Here Here
Billings 17-20 0-0 9:05pm Boyles Here Here Here
Arizona 13-17 N/A OFF OFF Here N/A N/A

Top 25 Daily Rundown (Top 25 based on the Midseason Rankings)

Rank Player LVL Performance
1 Robert Stephenson AAA DNP
2 Jesse Winker AA 1-4, RBI, K.
3 Nick Travieso A+ DNP – Injured
4 Yorman Rodriguez AAA DNP
5 Sal Romano A+ DNP
6 Amir Garrett A+ DNP
7 Raisel Iglesias MLB DNP
8 Tyler Stephenson BIL DNP
9 Phillip Ervin A+ 0-4, K.
10 Alex Blandino A+ 3-4, 2 2B.
11 Jon Moscot MLB DNP – Injured
12 Aristides Aquino A 1-4, K.
13 Kyle Waldrop AAA 2-4.
14 Jonathon Crawford A+ DNP – Injured
15 Mark Armstrong A DNP – Injured
16 Tyler Mahle A DNP
17 Junior Arias A+ 0-2, BB, RBI, K.
18 Tejay Antone A DNP
19 Nick Howard A+ DNP – Injured
20 Gavin LaValley A DNP
21 Wyatt Strahan A DNP
22 Luis Gonzalez A 0-4.
23 Sebastian Elizalde A+ 0-3, run, BB.
24 Seth Mejias Brean AA 1-3, BB, run, K.
25 Carlton Daal A+ 0-4, K.

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Reds call up Kyle Skipworth, DFA Chris Dominguez http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/27/reds-call-up-kyle-skipworth-dfa-chris-dominguez/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/27/reds-call-up-kyle-skipworth-dfa-chris-dominguez/#comments Mon, 27 Jul 2015 18:36:35 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13386 The Cincinnati Reds have called up catcher Kyle Skipworth from Double-A Pensacola and designated Chris Dominguez for assignment.

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The Cincinnati Reds announced earlier this afternoon that they have called up catcher Kyle Skipworth.

There are actually two bits of information in there. The first is that the team called up Kyle Skipworth. Without the need for a starting pitcher for a few days, this move seems more like the Reds just adding a power bat on the bench than the speculation I’ve seen on twitter that it means Brayan Pena is about to be traded.

Skipworth homered in five straight games and six out of seven games from July 10th through the 19th. He’s gone 1-18 since with 13 strikeouts, so the team isn’t exactly calling up a hot bat at this point. He does bring the threat of going over the fence if you bring him off of the bench, but he’s also struck out 47% of the time he’s stepped to the plate in Double-A.

The second part of the tweet from John Fay, I believe happened yesterday but he (nor I) reported it, was that Chris Dominguez has been designated for assignment.

Dominguez has spent most of his 2015 with the Louisville Bats, but has spent very limited time with the big league club. With the Bats he hit .216/.264/.368. He showed solid pop in his bat, but that was about all as he struggled to hit for average and he walked just 10 times in 221 trips to the plate. In the big leagues he hit .261/.261/.522 with 12 strikeouts in 23 plate appearances.

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What they’re saying about the Johnny Cueto trade http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/27/what-theyre-saying-about-the-johnny-cueto-trade/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/27/what-theyre-saying-about-the-johnny-cueto-trade/#comments Mon, 27 Jul 2015 13:00:05 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13379 What is the national media saying about the Cincinnati Reds trade of Johnny Cueto?

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard that the Cincinnati Reds traded Johnny Cueto to the Kansas City Royals for three left handed pitchers. You can read my analysis on the deal, nearly 1000 words of it that includes scouting reports and thoughts on the players and the deal overall, right here. You should obviously start with my analysis, but what is everyone else saying about the deal? Let’s take a quick trip around the internet and see what some of the national writers had to say (be sure to check out the links – I’m just posting a quote or two from their analysis).

Jim Callis | MLB.com

All three of the lefties acquired by Cincinnati have a chance to be big league starters.

The Reds weren’t going to be able to re-sign Cueto, so turning him into three promising southpaws makes more sense than taking a first-round pick as compensation.

JJ Cooper | Baseball America

The Reds expected to lose Cueto to free agency, so the opportunity to cash in their best pitcher was too good to pass up. What they get in return are two power arm lefties who could blossom into mid-rotation starters or at worst should be useful bullpen pieces and a third lefthander who is ready to jump right into the back of their rotation if needed.

Matthew Trueblood | Baseball Prospectus

It really depends on what one makes of Finnegan. Lamb’s prospect sheen is long gone, though his value is on the rebound this year as he establishes health and command. Reed was a second-round pick in 2013. If Finnegan becomes a dominant reliever or a mid-rotation starter, that’s a nice return. If his uneven usage in his pro career to date dooms him to inconsistent development or pushes him into a relief role to which he never truly takes, it’s a soft return. Time will tell.

Keith Law | ESPN.com

There’s a good chance the Reds end up with two mid- to back-of-the-rotation starters from this trade, and possibly a good reliever, too, assuming all three guys stay healthy. That feels like a solid return for 11 starts from Cueto.

Quinn Barry | Minor League Ball

Overall, I think this is a fair trade for both sides. Kansas City received the true ace they will need in a short series. Cincinnati gets three solid prospects, all with starting potential and a high floor. The most intriguing part of this deal will be to follow the Reds’ development choices with Finnegan. The organization clearly regards him highly, but they must be careful to avoid another Neftali Feliz situation.

Jeff Sullivan | Fangraphs

The Kazmir trade looked light at first, because we’re all biased by what we thought about guys before the year. It’s similar here. Before the year, Finnegan looked talented, but it wasn’t clear if he was a starter, and Lamb and Reed were mostly nothing. Now, there are still questions about Finnegan, but Lamb’s got a real shot and Reed’s got a real shot, so this trade goes deeper than one guy with question marks. It makes the Royals feel good, because if they can help Lamb and Reed, maybe they can help other guys in the organization to replace them. And it makes the Reds feel good, because while it always sucks to lose a Johnny Cueto, there are three pitchers coming back, two who could help soon, and another whose stock is rising. The Reds are unlikely to be good again for a bit, but they should be able to avoid the deepest depths of rebuilding misery.

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Reds Minor League Game Review – 7/26/15 http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/27/reds-minor-league-game-review-72615/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/27/reds-minor-league-game-review-72615/#comments Mon, 27 Jul 2015 09:07:03 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13377 The Billings Mustangs won a double header as KJ Franklin had a big night in the win.

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Louisville lost 4-0. Box Score

  • Brennan Boesch went 2-4.
  • Chris Berset went 1-4.
  • Josh Satin went 2-4.
  • Juan Silva went 1-3.
  • Drew Hayes threw 3 shutout innings with a walk and 3 strikeouts.

Game Notes

Indianapolis scored a single run in the 2nd and 3rd inning and padded their lead in the 4th with two more runs. The Bats were never able to score as they fell to 50-53 on the season.

Pensacola lost 10-2. Box Score

  • Zach Vincej went 1-2 with a double, run and 2 walks.
  • Jesse Winker went 1-4 with an RBI.
  • Marquez Smith went 1-4 witha  double.
  • Seth Mejias-Brean went 1-3 with a walk and a run.
  • Ryan Wright went 1-3 with an RBI.
  • Jimmy Mran threw 1.1 shutout innings with 2 walks.
  • Kyle McMyne threw a shutout inning.

Game Notes

Biloxi scored a run in the top of the 1st inning, but Pensacola got the run back in the bottom of the inning on an RBI single by Jesse Winker that brought in Zach Vincej. The Shuckers would regain the lead in the 3rd with a 3-run inning and they would add to it with two more 3-run innings the rest of the way as Pensacola dropped to 17-13 in the second half.

Daytona won 16-4. Box Score

  • Phillip Ervin went 2-5 with a steal (20), 2 runs and 2 steals.
  • Alex Blandino went 2-6 with a home run (7), 2 runs and 3 RBI.
  • Sebastian Elizalde went 3-5 with a walk, home run (9), 3 runs and 3 RBI.
  • Daniel Pigott went 3-6 with a run and 2 RBI.
  • Taylor Sparks went 3-5 with 2 doubles, a walk, 2 runs and an RBI.
  • Joe Hudson went 3-4 with 2 doubles, a walk, 2 runs and an RBI.
  • Joe Mantoni threw 2 perfect innings with a strikeout.
  • Evan Mitchell threw a perfect inning with a strikeout.
  • El’Hajj Muhammad threw a shutout inning with a walk and a strikeout.

Game Notes

Both teams would score a run in the 1t inning, but Daytona would jump out to a lead in the 2nd with a 4-run inning highlighted by Sebastian Elizlade’s 2-run homer.  The Tortugas would pad the lead over the next two innings to jump ahead 7-3, including a solo home run to lead off the 4th inning by Alex Blandino. They would put the game away in the 6th inning with a 5-run rally that made it 12-4. Two 2-run innings followed as Daytona went on to win 16-4.

Dayton lost 2-1. Box Score

  • Jimmy Pickens went 1-4 with a solo home run (5).
  • Chad Tromp went 1-2 and was hit by a pitch.
  • Jake Paulson allowed 2 runs in 6 innings with 4 strikeouts.
  • Jake Ehret threw 2 shutout innings with 3 strikeouts.

Game Notes

Dayton got on the board in the 1st inning with a Jimmy Pickens solo home run. Lansing would tie things up in the bottom of the inning. Jake Paulson settled in after that, keeping the game tied until the bottom of the 6th inning when the Lugnuts broke through for a second run. Neither team would score again as the Dragons fell 2-1.

Billings won 6-5, 5-3 in a double header.

Game 1: 6-5 win. Box Score

  • Blake Trahan went 2-4 with a run and an RBI.
  • Kevin Garcia went 2-3 with a double, 2 steals and a run.
  • KJ Franklin went 2-3 with 2 doubles, an RBI and a run.
  • Tyler Stephenson went 1-3 with a run.
  • Ed Charlton went 1-3 with a home run (3) and 3 RBI.
  • Jonathan Martijn went 1-1 with a walk, steal and a HBP.
  • Shane Mardirosian went 1-2.
  • Jose Lopez allowed 2 runs in 5 innings with 7 strikeouts.
  • Jimmy Herget threw a perfect inning.

Game Notes

The Mustangs got out to an early lead when KJ Franklin doubled in Kevin Garcia. Ed Charlton would hit a 3-run homer later in the 1st to make it a 4-0 game. Great Falls got a run back in the 2nd and another one in the 5th to cut the lead to 4-2. In the top of the 6th the Voyagers took the lead with a 3-run inning. Billings would tie the game up on a Blake Trahan single in the bottom of the 6th and an error would bring Trahan in later to give them the lead. Jimmy Herget came out for the 7th inning and picked up the save to end the first game of the double header.

Game 2: 5-3 win. Box Score

  • Hector Vargas went 2-3 with a double and a run.
  • Kevin Garcia went 1-3 with 2 runs.
  • KJ Franklin went 2-3 with 2 doubles and 3 RBI.
  • Dalton Carter went 1-2 with a walk.
  • Zach Shields went 2-3 with a double and a run.
  • Soid Marquez threw 5 hitless innings of relief with a walk and 6 strikeouts.

Game Notes

The Mustangs and Voyargers both scored a run in the 1st and 2nd innings, but Great Falls took the lead in the top of the 3rd with another run. They held the 3-2 lead until the bottom of the 5th inning . Zach Shields doubled to lead off the inning and he’d score on a sac fly to tie the game up. Hector Vargas and Kevin Garcia followed with singles and both would score on a KJ Franklin double that made it a 5-3 game for Billings. Soid Marquez finished out the final two innings like he threw his first three innings, without allowing any hits as he fired five hitless innings of relief.

AZL Reds lost 9-2. Box Score

  • James Vasquez went 1-4 with a double.
  • Blake Butler went 2-3 with a walk, solo home run (1) and 2 RBI.
  • Raul Wallace went 1-4 with an RBI.
  • Alberti Chavez went 1-2.
  • Bernardo Moreta threw a perfect inning with a strikeout.
  • Ian Kahaloa allowed a run in 3 innings with 2 strikeouts.

Game Notes

The Reds grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the 2nd inning on Blake Butler’s first career home run. The Indians would tie things up in the next inning, and the game would stay tied until the bottom of the 7th. That’s when the Indians put the game away with a 7-run rally.

7/27/15 Game Preview

Team 1st half 2nd half Time (EST) Probable Box Score Listen Live Watch Live
Louisville 50-53 N/A 7:05pm Cingrani Here Here Here
Pensacola 25-43 17-13 OFF OFF Here Here Here
Daytona 37-33 17-11 6:30pm Routt Here Here N/A
Dayton 39-31 16-15 OFF OFF Here Here Here
Billings 17-20 N/A 9:05pm Boyles Here Here Here
Arizona 12-17 N/A 10:00pm TBA Here N/A N/A

Top 25 Daily Rundown (Top 25 based on the Midseason Rankings)

Rank Player LVL Performance
1 Robert Stephenson AAA DNP
2 Jesse Winker AA 1-4, RBI, K.
3 Nick Travieso A+ DNP – Injured
4 Yorman Rodriguez AAA DNP
5 Sal Romano A+ DNP
6 Amir Garrett A+ DNP
7 Raisel Iglesias MLB DNP
8 Tyler Stephenson BIL 1-3, run.
9 Phillip Ervin A+ 2-5, 2 runs, 2 RBI, steal.
10 Alex Blandino A+ 2-6, HR, 2 runs, 3 RBI.
11 Jon Moscot MLB DNP – Injured
12 Aristides Aquino A 1-4, K.
13 Kyle Waldrop AAA 0-4.
14 Jonathon Crawford A+ DNP – Injured
15 Mark Armstrong A DNP – Injured
16 Tyler Mahle A DNP
17 Junior Arias A+ 1-6, 3B, run, 2 RBI, K.
18 Tejay Antone A DNP
19 Nick Howard A+ DNP – Injured
20 Gavin LaValley A DNP
21 Wyatt Strahan A DNP
22 Luis Gonzalez A 0-4.
23 Sebastian Elizalde A+ 3-5, HR, BB, 3 runs, 4 RBI.
24 Seth Mejias Brean AA 1-3, BB, run, K.
25 Carlton Daal A+ 1-6, 3 runs.

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Reds trade Johnny Cueto to Royals for 3 left handed pitchers http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/26/reds-trade-johnny-cueto-to-royals-for-3-left-handed-pitchers/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/26/reds-trade-johnny-cueto-to-royals-for-3-left-handed-pitchers/#comments Sun, 26 Jul 2015 19:36:04 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13372 The Cincinnati Reds have traded Johnny Cueto to the Kansas City Royals for left handed pitchers John Lamb, Cody Reed and Brandon Finnegan.

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The Cincinnati Reds have reportedly dealt Johnny Cueto to the Kansas City Royals for prospects Brandon Finnegan, Cody Reed and John Lamb. All three are left handed pitchers that are currently in the minor leagues.

Brandon Finnegan

The Royals picked Finnegan with the 17th overall pick in the 2014 draft and before the season was over, he was in the big leagues and dominating in a small sample of time. He is the only player to ever pitch in the College World Series and the Major League Baseball World Series in the same year.  He’s never made a start in the big leagues, but the 22-year-old has made 12 starts in the minor leagues with the Royals.

Scouting reports are split on whether or not he can start in the future or not. He’s got three pitches, but he’s had some struggles with control as well. In 2015 he’s walked 6.3 batters per 9 innings pitched at the minor league level in 27.0 innings and 4.8 batters per 9 innings in the big leagues over 24.1 innings this season.

Past reports have him as a starter, sitting in the Low 90’s, but as a reliever he’s averaged 95 MPH and topped out at 98 MPH this season. He also mixes in a slider that’s above-average and a change up that he hasn’t used too much since college, as most of his time has been spent relieving.

Career Stats

Year Lev ERA IP H HR BB K WHIP
2014 A+-AA 1.33 27.0 20 3 4 26 0.89
2014 AA 2.25 12.0 15 2 2 13 1.42
2014 KCR 1.29 7.0 6 0 1 10 1.00
2015 AA 2.77 13.0 10 1 12 13 1.69
2015 AAA 7.07 14.0 17 1 7 19 1.71
2015 KCR 2.96 24.1 16 3 13 21 1.19

Cody Reed

A second left handed pitcher in the deal, Cody Reed was selected in the 2nd round by the Kansas City Royals in 2013. After struggling in 2013 and 2014, Reed has broken out in the 2015 season. The 22-year-old had a 2.53 ERA between Advanced-A and Double-A over 96.0 innings with jus 26 walks and 84 strikeouts.

There were some past concerns about whether or not he was able to start because of his control problems. In 2015 those problems have been put behind him and more and more people are believing he’s a future starter, though some still believe he’s a future reliever. His fastball is in the 90-93 MPH range and he’s touched 96 this season. He will mix in an above-average slider and a change up.

Career Stats

Year Lev ERA IP H HR BB K WHIP
2013 Rk 6.07 29.2 31 0 23 25 1.82
2014 A 5.46 84.0 105 5 36 58 1.68
2015 A+ 2.14 67.1 62 3 18 65 1.19
2015 AA 3.45 28.2 26 3 8 19 1.19

John Lamb

The third left handed pitcher of the trade, John Lamb was the Royals 5th round pick in the 2008 season. He was a former top prospect, ranking inside the Top 20 overall for both Baseball America and Baseball Prospectus after the 2010 season, but he underwent Tommy John surgery and it took him some time to regain his form as he fell down prospect lists.

Like Reed, Lamb has broken out in 2015. The 24-year-old has spend the entire year in Triple-A, posting a 2.67 ERA in the PCL. He cut his walk rate significantly from the year prior, though it just went back to career norms and he’s struck out more batters than innings pitched.

Lamb is now sitting in the low 90’s with his fastball and he’s touched 96, routinely hitting 95 in his starts. His curveball can flash itself as a good pitch but still struggles to find consistency. He’s also throwing a cutter/slider and a change up.

Career Stats

Year Lev ERA IP H HR BB K WHIP
2009 Rk 3.70 41.1 33 4 11 46 1.07
2009 Rk 3.95 27.1 24 4 9 25 1.21
2010 A 1.58 40.0 26 2 17 43 1.08
2010 A+ 1.45 74.2 59 1 15 90 0.99
2010 AA 5.45 33.0 37 2 13 26 1.52
2011 AA 3.09 35.0 33 3 13 22 1.31
2012 Rk 7.36 7.1 9 2 2 8 1.50
2012 Rk 6.35 5.2 6 0 2 6 1.41
2013 A+ 5.63 92.2 109 13 19 76 1.38
2013 AAA 6.75 16.0 15 1 7 10 1.38
2014 AAA 3.97 138.1 137 19 68 131 1.48
2015 AAA 2.67 94.1 80 7 29 96 1.16

Overall Thoughts

The Reds landed two of the Royals Top 10 guys, if you want to assume that Finnegan were eligible for prospect lists (which he’s barely not eligible for anymore). Cody Reed ranked as the Royals 9th best prospect in the Baseball America Midseason Update. They also grabbed a third arm of note with John Lamb who on that same midseason update was a player on the rise. With the strength of the Cincinnati Reds system being starting pitching, it’s strange to see them trading for three pitchers. The Reds do lack left handed pitching in the system, but for me, the only time a pitchers arm he throws with matters is if he’s a loogy, and if that’s what a guy is going to be, they aren’t important given that they throw 35-45 innings a season.

Brandon Finnegan absolutely, without question, must be tried as a starter by the Reds for this trade to be viewed as a success. Finnegan is the leading part in the deal and if he’s going to be used as a reliever, it’s a failure, regardless of how good he can actually be. If he eventually winds up in the bullpen, but is tried as a starter for a while first, then things change a little bit. But you have to at least give it a shot before going with him in the bullpen. The Reds have time to try it. They aren’t competing in 2015 or 2016. See what he can do if he’s given a chance to actually start.

Both Cody Reed and John Lamb look like they could be guys who fall into that #3-5 starter range depending on just how well things work out for them moving forward, but both guys also look like they could be relievers as well. There’s plenty of upside with this trade as the Reds could have just landed three starting pitchers that could help out as soon as the middle of 2016. But at the same time there’s a chance they just traded for three relievers. With prospects there’s always going to be some risk involved, and while Finnegan technically isn’t a prospect by definition, he is one for all intents and purposes. He’s a Major League arm, no question about it, but personally, I expected one guy to be a little more of a sure thing in a deal for Johnny Cueto.

Update

Here are some notes from Fangraphs Kiley McDaniel:

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Is today the day that the Reds trade Johnny Cueto? http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/26/is-today-the-day-that-the-reds-trade-johnny-cueto/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/26/is-today-the-day-that-the-reds-trade-johnny-cueto/#comments Sun, 26 Jul 2015 14:49:01 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13370 Saturday night nearly saw Johnny Cueto traded by the Cincinnati Reds, but things fell through. Is today the day things are completed?

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Last night in Colorado the Cincinnati Reds had Johnny Cueto scheduled to start the game, but shortly before  the game started, Michael Lorenzen began to long toss on the field – something he does to begin warming up on days he’s going to pitch. It’s not something he, or any pitcher would do the day before they are actually scheduled to pitch. Thus began the speculation around the baseball world, except on Fox Sports Ohio, that Johnny Cueto was about to be traded.

Well, that didn’t happen. At least last night. Cueto made the start and threw eight shutout innings. After the game reports began to come out that he was indeed almost traded, to the Kansas City Royals, but something kept the trade from going through immediately.

Ken Rosenthal reported that it was a player failing the medical part of the trade that caused it to fall through. Dave Gershman reported that it wasn’t a medical issue at all, but that neither side had their demands met.

There were a few names thrown around by the media, but I’d rather not sit around and speculate on who had the right names, the wrong names and how good or bad those players are. There’s not enough time in the day to do all of that kind of research for every rumor that pops up.

What yesterday tells us though, is that the Cincinnati Reds and someone, with the rumors all pointing to Kansas City, were so close to making a trade that the Reds began warming up another pitcher. Jim Bowden reports that the Reds and Royals are still discussing a deal this morning. With Cueto not scheduled to pitch again until Thursday, there’s no rush to complete a deal today, but with as close as it apparently was, don’t be surprised if today is the day that the Reds ship the best Reds starter since Jose Rijo to another team.

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Reds Minor League Game Review – 7/25/15 http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/26/reds-minor-league-game-review-72515/ http://redsminorleagues.com/2015/07/26/reds-minor-league-game-review-72515/#comments Sun, 26 Jul 2015 05:08:21 +0000 http://redsminorleagues.com/?p=13368 Tyler Mahle pitched another gem for the Dayton Dragons on Saturday night as Dayton picked up the win.

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No game notes tonight. It’s late and I’m beat.

Louisville won 4-2 in 10 innings. Box Score

  • Brennan Boesch went 1-4 with 2 RBI and a walk.
  • Ramon Cabrera went 1-2 with a walk and an RBI.
  • Ryan LaMarre went 1-3 with a solo home run (6) and 2 RBI.
  • Donn Roach allowed 1 earned (2 total) in 6.1 innings with 3 strikeouts.
  • Sam LeCure threw 2 shutout innings.
  • Carlos Contreras threw a hitless inning with 3 walks.

Pensacola lost 4-2. Box Score

  • Bryson Smith went 1-4 with a double and an RBI.
  • Jesse Winker went 1-4 with a solo home run (7).
  • Juan Duran went 1-3 with a walk.
  • Juan Perez went 1-2 with a double, walk and a run.
  • Josh Smith allowed 2 earned (3 total) in 6 innings with 3 walks and 3 strikeouts.
  • Kevin Shackelford threw a perfect inning.
  • Miguel Celestino threw a shutout inning.
  • Zack Weiss was charged with an unearned run in an inning of work.

Daytona was postponed again. No make up date as of now.

Dayton won 4-3. Box Score

  • Cory Thompson went 1-4 with a run.
  • Jonathan Reynoso went 2-4 with a triple and 2 runs.
  • Paul Kronenfeld went 2-4 with a run.
  • Aristides Aquino went 2-4 with 3 RBI.
  • Argenis Aldazoro went 1-4 with a double.
  • Tyler Mahle was charged with an unearned run in 6 innings with a walk and 2 strikeouts.
  • Michael Sullivan threw a shutout inning with 2 strikeouts.

Billings won 9-6. Box Score

  • Blake Trahan went 2-5 with a double, 2 RBI and 3 runs.
  • Hector Vargas went 3-4 with 2 doubles, a walk, a triple, 3 RBI and 2 runs.
  • Kevin Garcia went 1-4 with a walk and an RBI.
  • Brantley Bell went 2-5 with a double and an RBI.
  • Mitch Trees went 1-3 with a walk and 2 runs.
  • Tanner Rainey allowed 2 runs in 5 innings with 3 walks and 2 strikeouts.
  • Sarkis Ohanian allowed a run in 2 innings with a walk and 2 strikeouts.

AZL Reds won 7-0. Box Score

  • Miles Gordon went 3-5 with 2 doubles and 2 RBI.
  • Sammy Diaz went 1-3 with a run.
  • Jon Matthews (rehab) went 1-2 with a run.
  • Jake Turnbull went 0-1 with 2 walks and 2 runs.
  • Raul Wallace went 3-4 with a triple, run and 2 RBI.
  • Leandro Santana went 1-4 with a double.
  • Montrell Marshall went 2-4 with a double and 2 runs.
  • Alberti Chavez went 1-4 with 2 RBI.
  • Alfredo Mena threw 4 shutout innings with a walk and 3 strikeouts.
  • Adrian Rodriguez threw 4 shutout innings with 3 strikeouts.
  • Andrew Jordan threw a perfect inning with a strikeout.

7/26/15 Game Preview

Team 1st half 2nd half Time (EST) Probable Box Score Listen Live Watch Live
Louisville 50-52 N/A 1:35pm Buschmann Here Here Here
Pensacola 25-43 17-12 5:05pm Astin Here Here Here
Daytona 37-33 16-11 4:00pm Brattvet Here Here N/A
Dayton 39-31 16-14 2:05pm Paulson Here Here Here
Billings 14-20 N/A 7:05pm TBA/TBA Here Here Here
Arizona 12-16 N/A 10:00pm TBA Here N/A N/A

Top 25 Daily Rundown (Top 25 based on the Midseason Rankings)

Rank Player LVL Performance
1 Robert Stephenson AAA DNP
2 Jesse Winker AA 1-4, HR, K.
3 Nick Travieso A+ DNP – Injured
4 Yorman Rodriguez AAA DNP
5 Sal Romano A+ DNP
6 Amir Garrett A+ DNP
7 Raisel Iglesias MLB DNP
8 Tyler Stephenson BIL DNP
9 Phillip Ervin A+ DNP
10 Alex Blandino A+ DNP – Injured
11 Jon Moscot MLB DNP – Injured
12 Aristides Aquino A 2-4, 3 RBI.
13 Kyle Waldrop AAA 1-4, K.
14 Jonathon Crawford A+ DNP
15 Mark Armstrong A DNP – Injured
16 Tyler Mahle A 6IP, 5H, 0ER, 1BB, 2K.
17 Junior Arias A+ DNP
18 Tejay Antone A DNP
19 Nick Howard A+ DNP – Injured
20 Gavin LaValley A 0-4, 2K.
21 Wyatt Strahan A DNP
22 Luis Gonzalez A 0-4, 2K.
23 Sebastian Elizalde A+ DNP
24 Seth Mejias Brean AA 0-3, BB, K.
25 Carlton Daal A+ DNP

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