Around the Farm: July 1
Ben Copeland: LF, Akron: 3-5, 2 R, 2 HR, 2 R, 1 K:
Welcome to Akron, Mr. Copeland. The Aeros leftfielder was signed by Cleveland when Matt McBride was called up to Columbus on June 28th, and Akron hasn't missed a beat. Copeland was mashing the ball for the Lancaster Barnstormers, an independent playing in the Atlantic League. He was hitting .331, with four homers and 19 RBI as their starting centerfielder, and lead-off hitter. The 27-year old has continued his hot-hitting in Akron, and apparently added power to his game with this two-homer performance.
Adam Abraham: 3B, Kinston: 3-4, 2 R, 2 2B, 1 K:
This kid is officially one to watch. He's been teetering on the edge of becoming something more than an afterthought prospect all season, and he's finally starting to take the next step. Abraham is a doubles machine, hitting his 20th and 21st of the season last night, but he doesn't lack in power, as he leads the K-Tribe with 11 on the season. In his past two games, he's gone 5-7, with two runs and three doubles, and his ten-game stat line is an overly impressive .368/.478/.605. Abraham may be banging on the door of Tony's top 50 before the season is over.
Bryson Myles: RF, Mahoning Valley: 1-4, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 SB
I said it the day of the draft, and I'll keep saying it until every Tribe fan reading ATF realizes it, Bryson Myles is going to be THE steal for the Indians. He only had one hit, but was still wreaking havoc on the poor NY/Penn league. He stole his 7th and 8th bases, and scored two of the three Scrappers' runs. On one of those stolen bases, he got to third on a throwing error. He also got on base by getting hit by a pitch. He scored his second run from first on a double. Keep him here for now, but boy, you do have to wonder if he makes a move to Lake County prior to the end of the season.
- Jason Donald: 3B, Columbus: 2-4, 1 K: The Clippers were completely shut down by Mud Hens pitcher, Duane Below. Donald still managed a multi-hit game, continuing a mini-streak. He's 5-13 in his last three games, and over his past ten games is batting .314. While Donald is being touted as a better defender than Luis Valbuena this season, his fielding stats at triple A don't back that up. His fielding percentage as short is .955 in only 44 chances, and at third, it's an abysmal .875.
- Jason Kipnis: 2B, Columbus: 1-3, 1 BB, 1 K: Kipnis ups his current hit-streak to seven games in his early bid to get called up. Unfortunately for Kipnis, Orlando Cabrera has been hitting the ball (.333 in his last ten games) at the big-league level, likely keeping him in Columbus for the time being.
- Luis Valbuena: SS, Columbus: Valbuena went Oh-fer last night for only the second time in ten games. He's still the hottest bat in the Clippers' line-up, and with his versatility, could be the first call-up should the Indians decide to make a move.
- Zach McAllister: SP, Columbus: 8 IP, 9 H, 3 R/ER, 1 BB, 4 K, L (8-3): McAllister continued his solid season, going eight strong innings, and giving up only three runs. The offense hung him out to dry, scoring only once. McAllister has only one once since May 20th, but has continued to pitch well in between.
- Jordan Henry: DH, Akron: 1-5: Henry has been peppering the Eastern League outfield with hits over the past two weeks. He's currently on a torrid seven game hit streak in which he's gone 12-30 (.400), with six runs, a double and three RBI. He's also stole three bases during that time period. Even more impressive is his ten-game stat-line, in which he's gone .429/.478/.452. Tim Fedroff-who?
- Beau Mills: 1B, Akron: 1-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB: Mills has cooled off slightly from his torrid start, but he's continuing to provide production. Is it first-pick production? Let's give it time. If he can return to his 2008 form, we could have our #1 pick back.
- Donnie Webb: RF, Akron: 2-4, 1 R, 2 2B, 2 RBI: Webb has struggled all season, but put it all together last night. Webb had bog season in 2009, but has struggled since in a utility role.
- Joe Gardner: SP, Akron: 2 2/3 IP, 3 H, 6 R/1 ER, 3 BB, 3 K: Gardner grooved through the first two innings, giving up only a hit and a walk. The third was a different story. Gardner dug his own hole, giving up a lead-off walk and a single. Then, he was done in by his fielders. After a sac bunt out, a Juan Diaz error plated the first run against Gardner. Gardner, shaken, then hit the next batter before calming down with a K for the second out of the inning. A double and a single later, and Gardner would be pulled from the game.
- Tyler Sturdevant: RP, Akron: 2 IP, 7 H, 5 R/ER, 1 K: Sturdevant had been lights out in his two previous outings in Akron. Last night, he just had his lights knocked out. He's much, much better than this performance.
- Anthony Gallas: LF, Akron: 2-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K: Gallas hits his first homer for Kinston in a 5-3 comeback victory. Gallas has been mired in a major slump after mauling the Midwest League, but it's a common story in the pitching-heavy Carolina League.
- Tyler Cannon: SS, Akron: 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI: While Cannon certainly isn't at his low A production, he has been coming around of late. He's hitting .303 over his past ten games, and likely is the best offensive player, overall, on this team right now.
- Drew Pomeranz: SP, Akron: 5 1/3 IP, 6 H, 3 R/ER, 3 BB, 7 K, 1 HR: The Tribe brass is clearly not in any rush to move up Pomeranz this season. He's clearly working on his secondary pitches, with his changeup being a top priority. With struggles in the Akron rotation, it's likely that Pomeranz could move up there right now. The fact that he isn't shows that the Tribe is being much more patient with this ace than they were with Alex White. Let's hope it pays off.
- Francisco Jimenez: RP, Kinston: 2 1/3 IP, 2 H, 2 K, W (3-1): Well, I didn't have the time of day for this kid in the first half of the season, because he pitched like utter garbage. He's been a new reliever since the break. This was his third appearance (all more than two innings) without giving up a run.
- Preston Guillmet: Closer, Kinston: 1 IP, S (19): Ho-hum. Guillmet comes in with another perfect ninth-inning, and his 19th save of the season. His ERA fell to 1.95 overall. With Burns in Akron, and Judy in Columbus (well...Cleveland for now), the future of the closer role seems bright should Chris Perez run into trouble.
- Alex Monsalve: C, Lake County: 1-3, 2 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB: Monsalve continues to be an extremely productive player, and continues to become more-and-more valuable as a catcher in the organization. Right now, he could be making himself into an intriguing trade chip should the Indians decide to make a move.
- Jesus Aguilar: 1B, Lake County: 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B: Aguilar is just mashing right now for Lake County, and has his average up to .287. He has six multi-hit games in his past ten and has an insane line: .381/.460/.857. Yeah, his slugging is flippin' .857 right now. That alone is higher than almost the entire teams OPS. As it stands, his ten game OPS is 1.317. No, that's not a typo either. Aguilar just could be a monster offensive player in the making.
- Giovanny Urshela: 3B, Lake County: 2-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 3 RBI: Urshela's three-run blast showcased why the Indians brass is so high on the kid. While he's struggled for much of the season, there's definitely potential there, especially offensively.
- Argenis Martinez: 2B, Lake County: 2-4, 1 R, 2 K, 1 SB (8): Martinez continues to carry a hot bat, and is currently riding a five-game hit streak. He's 11-32 in his last ten games, and is giving the Tribe another potential middle-of-the-infield bat in the low minors.
- J.D. Reichenbach: SP/RP, Lake County: 6 H, 2 R/ER, 4 K: Reichenbach continues to be an intriguing watch as a starter after his brilliant performance in a no-hit, spot-start for Kinston. This was his second start for Lake County this season, and his first win as a starter.
- Dale Dickerson: RP, Lake County: 1 IP, 1 K, S (2): Dickerson has been outstanding at Lake County this year, and clearly seems to be knocking on the door of a potential closer-role in the future. He currently has a 1.67 ERA.
- Tony Wolters: SS, Mahoning Valley: 2-5, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 2 K: Wolters continued his nice summer with a couple of doubles, driving in Myles both times. I'm not sure who's helping who here.
- Jordan Smith: DH, Mahoning Valley: 3-6, 1 RBI, 1 K: Smith is batting a hefty .349 since being drafted ninth by the Indians. Wow, what a draft so far. I know that it's early, but these early signees are really smacking the ball around in the NY/Penn league.
- Mason Radeke: SP, Mahoning Valley: 5 2/3, 7 H, 3 R/ER, 2 HR, 5 K: Radeke made his second professional start, and really did pitch well despite giving up two homers. It's clear that this kid throws strikes (0 walks), and as he figures out how to locate his pitches, he could become dangerous.
- Cody Allen: RP, Mahoning Valley: 2 1/3 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 5 K: Allen was drafted in the sixteenth round by the Tribe in 2010, and again in the 23rd round this season, and it's clear why after this performance. He's an interesting watch, as he's two season out after Tommy John surgery. He has four average-to-plus pitches, and his velocity has been up. Hmmm, another 2011 steal? Again, it's early, but this 2011 crop could be an incredible bunch, and the top players still haven't signed!
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 email@example.com.