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Around the Farm: April 28, 2012

Around the Farm: April 28, 2012
April 29, 2012
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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.

Matt LaPorta: LF, Columbus Clippers: 2-for-2, 3 R, 12B, 2 BB.

Alright, alright, alright, I get it. Matt LaPorta deserves a shot at another promotion. Listen, I don’t think that he’s anything more than a Quad-A player, but boy is he doing whatever he can to get another chance in the bigs. If you don’t realize how good he’s been playing, take a look at the basics. He is currently on an 11-game hit streak, and has hits in 18 of his 19 games. His overall line is .389/.458/.722, but it pales in comparison to his recent streak. Over his past ten games, he’s upped the ante with a .459/.556/.730 line, with six extra base hits, and eight RBI. His struck out nine times, which is a lot, but you can temper that with his eight walks. He’s even hotter over the past four games, all multi-hit affairs. During that stretch, he’s gone 10-for-13, with six runs, three doubles, two homers and eight RBI. Of course, he’s only hitting .353 against lefties. Only you say? LaPorta is hitting a ridiculous .421 against righties. With the Indians outfield in complete and utter disarray right now, it may be time to give LaPorta his chance. But let’s be straight about this: It will be LaPorta’s last stand. But wow, there’s no doubt that he’s earned it.

Will Roberts: SP, Lake County Captains: W (2-1), 7 IP, 4 H, 3 K.

When you think of “big-arms” in the Indians system, Will Roberts likely isn’t one that you think of, but he could be by the time this season is over, if he continues to progress off of his first few starts during the 2012 season. Roberts doesn’t have a cannon of an arm, but has an advanced approach and delivery that will ultimately be his calling card should he advance through the system. He was a fifth rounder last season out of Virginia, and had a solid first season in short season Mahoning Valley. He went 1-3, but only had a 3.27 ERA in nine appearances and 41 1/3 innings, while striking out 29 and only walking seven. He’s not the type of pitcher that’s going to blow it by you, but he does throw strikes, and he does get people out. This season, Roberts has made five starts, and in all but four of them, he gave up two runs or less. He’s walked eight, and only struck out 13 (seven in one earlier start), but maintains a solid 2.90 ERA.

  • Lonnie Chisenhall: 3B, Columbus: 2-for-4, 1 R: Chisenhall continues to hit the ball well, and while the splits aren’t the best (.250 vs. lefties/.367 vs. righties), he’s still hitting the ball extremely well. After a mild slump mid-month, Chiz has come on strong, going 6-for-16, with two doubles in his last four games. His eighth inning lead-off single started a three-run Columbus rally that eventually won the game.
  • Russ Canzler: 1B, Columbus: 2-for-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1K: Canzler started off the season hitting with a noodle, but has certainly picked up the pace over the past week. He’s had back-to-back two hit games, and three of his last four. He’s hitting .341 over his last 10 games, and is beginning to make himself a viable option for the Tribe, should injuries present themselves.
  • Beau Mills: DH, Columbus: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K: Mills blasted a two-run, eighth inning homer that gave the Clippers the winning runs in their 8-5 victory. Mills is clearly the forgotten man at Columbus after rolling out an impressive 2011 season. Not sure why he’s playing third  fiddle, but he’s doing what he can to stay relevant.
  • Kevin Slowey: SP, Columbus: 10 H, 4 R/ER, 1 BB, 2 K: I suppose I expected more from Slowey, who doesn’t even look like the best pitcher in Columbus, let alone the first pitcher to be called up. After two outstanding quality starts in his first two appearances, he’s been downright average since. He gave up nine hits and four earned runs in his first 14 2/3 innings, and given up 20 hits and 10 earned runs in his last 11 1/3 innings.
  • Jeremy Accardo: Closer, Columbus:  S (3), 1 IP, 1 K: Hagadone, Lee and now Allen have been the big-armed focus in Columbus, but Accardo has quietly been efficient as the Clippers primary closer. Accardo has gone 12 total innings, while walking four and striking out 11.
  • Tyler Holt: CF, Carolina: 2-for-3, 1 R, 1BB, 1 K: Holt continues to handle himself like a professional, as he’s apparently stuck in Carolina for a bit while the upper-levels straighten themselves out. He’s now had three straight games in which he’s had two-hits, and five of his last six. During that stretch, he’s 11-for-24, with eight runs, a double and two RBI and a stolen base. Last night, Carolina had three-hits, and Holt had two of them. He has to get promoted soon, right?
  • Jesus Aguilar: 1B, Carolina: 0-for-4, 2 K: Aguilar’s offense has dropped off the table over the past four games. He’s gone 0-for-12, with a run and six K’s. It appeared as though Aguilar had righted the ship a bit with regards to his approach, and at one point, had five walks and six K’s. Over the past ten games, his walked once, and struck out 12 times. Back to the drawing board.
  • Mike Rayl: SP, Carolina: L (2-3), 5 IP, 6 H, 3 R/ER, 2 BB, 3 K: Rayl’s start wasn’t bad, but the offense couldn’t get it going. He’s currently been the most consistent Carolina starter this season, so it will be interesting to see how he rebounds.
  • Shawn Armstrong: RP, Carolina, 3 IP, 1 H, 3 K: Armstrong has been dominant since making the move to Carolina. The East Carolina grad has given up five hits and six walks in 11 1/3 IP, with 15 K’s. Could he be the next reliever to talk about moving forward?
  • Luigi Rodriguez: CF, Lake County: 3-for-5, 1 R, 1 RBI: Rodriguez is just tearing it up over the past three days, going 9-for-14, with five runs, a triple, a homer and three RBI, while stealing two bases. Entering the streak, he had only one hit in his previous 16 at bats, so nice rebound for the fleet-footed centerfielder.
  • Francisco Lindor: SS, Lake County: 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 2 SB (8): Here comes Lindor, who had been in a mini-slump before his recent tear. He now has a four-game hitting streak in which he’s gone 8-for-17, with two runs, a double, an RBI, a walk, three K’s and two stolen bases. As Tony mentioned yesterday, his splits are crazy. He’s hitting an insane .462 against lefties, and.236 against righties.
  • Alex Lavisky: C, Lake County: 1-for-2, 2 R, 2 BB: Lavisky is fighting a return to the offensive woes of the past two seasons, I’ll give him that. While he’s not hitting the ball like he was at the beginning of the year, he’s still hitting the ball.
  • Jerrud Sabourin: 3B, Lake County: 3-for-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI: Sabourin continues to showcase a nice bat early in the season, and has four multi-hit games in his last ten. The left handed bat is crushing righties, to the tune of .357, but is hitting only .150 against lefties.
  • Cole Cook: RP, Lake County: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 K: Cook has been outstanding in his last two appearances, going four innings, giving up four hits and a walk, while striking out four.

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

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