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Around the Farm: April 22, 2013

Around the Farm: April 22, 2013
April 23, 2013
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Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Indians prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.

Cedric Hunter: LF, Columbus Clippers: 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI:

The system is ripe with up-and-coming prospects, but part of the charm of minor league baseball are when guys like Cedric Hunter have a game that really makes a difference for their respective team. The Clippers have been struggling to put runs on the board, and Monday’s game was no different…until Hunter stepped to the plate in the seventh inning. He launched his first regular season home run with the Clippers, a two-run blast that was the difference-maker in their 3-0 victory. Hunter will likely never get a taste with the Indians, but here is where a guy like Hunter proves his value.

Cody Anderson: SP, Carolina Mudcats: W (3-0), 6 IP, 4 H, 0 R/ER, 2 BB, 3 K:

There are always guys in the system from year-to-year that make major moves with their performance, and while it’s early on in the season, you get the impression that Cody Anderson is one of those players. It’s always hard to judge a pitcher in Low or High-A, but that’s nearly always where the foundation is laid for guys to make their move. Anderson is there now, and has been everything that the Indians could want in a young starter. He’s got stuff that can be dominant, but knows how to pitch. The 22-year-old should easily find himself in Akron this year, and it could be earlier than anticipated if things begin to shake out ahead of him.

  • Mike McDade: 1B, Columbus: 3-for-3: McDade entered Monday’s game having gone 0-for-14 over his last four games, so I guess we can call this a slump-busting performance. It’s early yet, but McDade doesn’t seem to have the offense that the Indians were hoping for. Perhaps warmer weather will bring out some offense for the Clippers’ first baseman.
  • Joe Martinez: SP, Columbus: 6 IP, 4 H, 1 BB, 1 K: Martinez isn’t on the Indians’ radar as far as the starting rotation goes, but perhaps he should (I’m only being partially sarcastic). His overall ERA is 3.43, but that number is skewed a bit because of one of his four starts in which he gave up six earned runs. You can’t ignore starts, but Martinez has had a nice start to the year.
  • Matt Langwell: RP, Columbus: W (2-0), 2 IP, 1 H, 3 K: I’m fairly sick of hearing anything that insinuates that Langwell isn’t a major league pitcher. Does he have a bionic arm that can touch the upper 90’s? No. Does he have the ability to get people out? Yes. I’ve been his biggest supporter over the past three seasons,  and now he’s just dominating Triple A. In six appearances, going 10 1/3 innings, Langwell has only given up four hits and three walks, while striking out 10.
  • Preston Guilmet: Closer, Columbus: S (5), 1 IP, 1 BB, 2 K: Guilmet isn’t overpowering…but has that quirky, corkscrew delivery that I just love. I doubt he’ll ever be a closer in the bigs, although he’s been incredibly effective in the minors. Like Langwell, he’s never going to blow it by you, but he’s durable, effective, and I really think will find a Joe Smith-like niche once he gets his chance.
  • Luigi Rodriguez: CF, Lake County: 3-for-5, 1 R, 2 RBI: Rodriguez has been in a bit of slump, going 1-for-12 heading into Monday night’s ballgame, but the youngster managed his first multi-hit game since April 17th, and drove in half of the Captains runs. Consistency is elusive for Luigi, but needed before he moves up.
  • Jorge Martinez: LF, Lake County:  2-for-4, 1 R, 2 2B, 1 K: Martinez owned the Arizona League last year, but hasn’t mustered up much of that magic this year with any consistency. There’s promise there, but I’m not sure there’s enough to cover up his 17 K’s versus three walks.
  • Logan Vick: RF, Lake County: 1-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB: Vick’s hitting .333, but his OBP is over .450, and he has 12 walks against only eight K’s. Whenever you have that kind of approach, you can make yourself a major league commodity. This kid is a major sleeper in my humble opinion.
  • Francisco Valera: RP, Lake County: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 3 K: Valera was the only dominant pitcher for the Captains on Monday night, and has had a tremendous season early on in April.
  • Jeff Johnson: Closer, Carolina: S (3), 1 1/3, 1 BB, 2 K: How good has this guy been? This is his sixth game, and he’s given up one hit and gave up his first walk of the season on Monday night. In 6 1/3 innings, he’s struck out seven, and hasn’t given up a run yet.
  • Charlie Valerio: C, Carolina: 2-for-4, 1 2B: Valerio notched his third straight two-hit game, and has a five-game hit streak. He’s 6-for-11, with three runs and three doubles and a triple over the past three games. Have I mentioned that he’s had a double in five straight games?
  • Zach MacPhee: 2B, Carolina: 0-for-4, 1 K: MacPhee was added to the Mudcats roster to take the place of the injured Joey Wendle, and he managed an oh-fer. So, why the mention here in ATF? He was the only Muddy without a hit. Of course, Valerio was the only Muddy with multiple hits.
  • Quincy Latimore: LF, Akron: 2-for-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI: Latimore had back-to-back-to-back multi-hit ballgames on April 13-April 15. Since then, he’s gone 0-for-20…until Monday. Latimore seems to be a sorta poor-man’s Thomas Neal. He’s got skills, but perhaps Quad A type skills tops.
  • Jesus Aguilar: 1B, Akron: 2-for-5, 1 R, 2 K: Aguilar has four multi-hit games out of his past five, and is 8-for-20, with two runs, two doubles and nine RBI during that stretch. With the Indians making moves to address their corner infield slots, the spotlight has been off Aguilar a bit. Don’t forget about him though. If he figures things out, he could be a really good major leaguer.
  • Kyle Bellows: DH, Akron: 3-for-3, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI: Bellows is 5-for-11 this season, and has hits in all three of his games played. Bellows is a former fourth round selection that has gotten lost in the shuffle thanks to injury.
  • Bryce Stowell: RP, Akron: 1 2/3 IP, 2 H, 1 R/0 ER, 1 BB, 3 K: Stowell wasn’t lights out, but he did strike out three, and only gave up an unearned run in nearly two innings pitched. If he could just stay healthy, perhaps there is some light at the end of the tunnel for the former top minor league reliever.
  • Austin Adams: SP, Akron: 1 IP, 1 K: Adams missed 2012, but returned on the 19th. He got beat up a bit, but rebounded nicely in his inning of work on Monday.

Jim is currently the senior editor and Columnist, as well as  the host of IBI's weekly online radio shows, Smoke Signals and Cleveland Sports Insiders. You can follow Jim on Twitter @Jim_IBI, or contact him via e-mail at jpete@indiansprospectinsider.com.

User Comments

Carl Edney
April 23, 2013 - 2:04 PM EDT
actaully, Kyle Bellows has gotten lost in the shuffle because he sucks
Andy
April 23, 2013 - 11:38 AM EDT
I'm interested to see how he holds up in the early going and if he gets stretched out to 2-3 inning stints.

Packer still doesn't look all the way recovered from his shoulder injury. Hopefully fellow injured shoulder pitchers Clayton Cook and Sturdevant are more like Adams than Knapp in their recoveries.
Tony
April 23, 2013 - 7:54 AM EDT
Not sure what Adams' velo is at right now, but I hope to see him pitch soon or even ask about him. My assumption is he is back in the low-to-mid 90s at least.
Andy
April 23, 2013 - 7:43 AM EDT
It's encouraging to see Adams pitch effectively so soon after his return to game action, though consistency is the key as always. Any reports on if his fastball is back in the mid/upper 90s?

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