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Around the Farm: May 23, 2014

Around the Farm: May 23, 2014
Cole Sulser (Photo: IBI)
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Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Cleveland prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.

Cole Sulser (SP, Carolina): 6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R/ER, 1 BB, 9 K, 1 HR. This was arguably Sulser’s finest outing of the season as he put up a quality start, limited baserunners and racked up a bunch of strikeouts. This was a much needed good outing for him as he has mostly struggled this month (6.10 ERA) and had some very short outings over his past few starts. He is a guy who impressed last season with his showing at short season Single-A Mahoning Valley and really has come on strong as a guy who will compete and give you innings on a nightly basis.

  • Jason Kipnis (2B, Columbus): 0-for-2, RBI. Kipnis had an RBI groundout in the first inning and grounded out again in the third inning before being lifted after the fifth inning for Audy Ciriaco because he was only set to play five innings.
  • Jesus Aguilar (1B, Columbus): 2-for-3, 2 2B. This was Aguilar’s second game back since being optioned out from Cleveland and it was much better than the first game on Thursday night. I still believe he should be up in Cleveland helping them out at least against left-handed pitching.
  • Carlos Moncrief (RF, Columbus): 2-for-4, 2 K, A. Moncrief is slowly recovering from a very slow start to his season and is hitting .324 with a .961 OPS in his last 10 games and is now up to a .250 batting average and .674 OPS in 43 games this season.
  • Travis Banwart (SP, Columbus): 5.0 IP, 7 H, 3 R/ER, 3 BB, 4 K.
  • Columbus bullpen: 4.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K. The foursome of Blake WoodMike ZagurskiFrank Herrmann and Austin Adams each pitched a scoreless inning of relief and kept the Clippers in striking distance with a chance to come back and win.
  • Francisco Lindor (SS, Akron): 3-for-5, RBI, BB, K. This was one of Lindor’s better games over the last two weeks. He has been as consistent as a guy can be this season and showing a little more thunder than in years past.
  • Joe Wendle (2B, Akron): 2-for-6, K. Wendle looked to be coming out of his season long funk, but over the past seven games he is right back into one as he is just 3-for-31 at the plate during that period. Hopefully this two-hit effort gets him going again.
  • Tony Wolters (C, Akron): 0-for-5, 3 K. Wolters is one of several RubberDucks bats which have gone cold over the past two weeks. Over his last six games he is just 3-for-25 with 8 strikeouts. He has also been quite the singles hitter this year with 35 of his 42 hits going for one base.
  • Duke von Schamann (SP, Akron): 7.2 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 2 K. Von Schamann gave an outstanding effort with 7.2 shutout innings throwing 93 pitches (61 strikes) and using a pitch to contact approach to get deep into the game. This was his first start back at Akron since making a spot start at Columbus on May 18th.
  • Adam Miller (RP, Akron): 2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K. The wipeout slider and devastating changeup may be gone, but the fastball still gets into the mid-90s and the slider and changeup are still solid though inconsistent offerings. He has been stellar this season racking up a 0.96 ERA and has a .125 BAA in 9.1 innings.
  • Shawn Armstrong (RP, Akron): 2.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R/ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 HR. This game was scoreless until the 12th inning when Armstrong served up a solo homer and allowed another run to score later. He has been dominant out of the RubberDuck bullpen this year, and this was one of the few times the opposing offense has touched him up.
  • Todd Hankins (2B, Carolina): 1-for-4, R, HR, 2 RBI. Hankins has made two brief pitstops in Columbus this month and each time he comes back he sets the Carolina League on fire. In the 11 games since returning from Columbus he is hitting .333 with 3 HR, 11 RBI and 1.058 OPS.
  • Luigi Rodriguez (CF, Carolina): 2-for-4, R, K. Rodriguez needed a game like this as he has been scuffling of late. Over his last 10 games he is now just 6-for-33 (.182) and he has 10 strikeouts.
  • Jason Knapp (RP, Myrtle Beach): 3.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K. Our old friend is making a comeback attempt with the Rangers in their minor league system. He’s done a great job of limiting runs as he has a 1.80 ERA, .125 BAA and has 9 strikeouts in 10.0 innings, but the 11 walks are killer.
  • Josh Martin (RP, Carolina): 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K. Martin is a guy who often gets overlooked, but he is a guy who is having an exceptional showing this season out of the bullpen. In 13 games he now has a 1.52 ERA, .134 BAA, and a 6-23 walk to strikeout ratio in 23.2 innings. He’s on the path to a possible midseason promotion to Double-A Akron.
  • Clint Frazier (CF, Lake County): 1-for-4, 2 K. Two more strikeouts for Frazier who now has 17 strikeouts in his last 38 at bats and is hitting  .184 with a .515 OPS in his last 10 games. His performance to date is just a cold reminder that this is a hard game to play no matter how talented we think a guy is.
  • Paul Hendrix (SS, Lake County): 0-for-4, 3 K. A rare bad night from Hendrix who has performed sensationally this month and is hitting .313 with a .951 OPS in 37 games this season. He’s really struggled through the last two games going 0-for-7 with 6 strikeouts.
  • Cody Ferrell (RF, Lake County): 1-for-3, R, 2B, K, A. After a hot start to his season a week or two in, Ferrell has done absolutely nothing at the plate since and continues to struggle. He is now hitting .212 with a .629 OPS in 41 games this season.
  • Jordan Milbrath (SP, Lake County): 5.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R/ER, 2 BB, 0 K. Milbrath picked up the loss in this one, but through no fault of his own as he pitched more than well enough to win. He allowed just three baserunners all game and really pitched to contact as he got all of his outs on batted balls to the field.
  • Caleb Hamrick (RP, Lake County): 2.1 IP, 5 H, 4 R/ER, 1 BB, 3 K. Hamrick continues to struggle to find consistency on the mound as he has now given up four runs or more in six of his ten outings this season. He is now 1-2 with an 8.10 ERA.

Follow Tony and the Indians Baseball Insider on Twitter @TonyIBI. Also, his new book the 2014 Cleveland Indians Baseball Insider which profiles the Indians' Top 100 Prospects and more is available for sale.

User Comments

May 24, 2014 - 10:10 PM EDT
Plutko and Aviles should move to Carolina before Milbrath, so there is a good chance he could be in Lake County most if not all of the season. Kipnis should be done with his rehab outing on Sunday and join the Indians in Chicago on Monday.

Knapp wanted a third shoulder surgery going into the 2012 season. The Indians refused to do it. Eventually they parted ways and released him in August of 2012.
May 24, 2014 - 8:35 PM EDT
Plutko will be advanced to Carolina before Milbrath.

As for the bats at LC a young group of players getting their knocks, and a lot of under performance. Yes it's good to win, but it's better to develop. Overall, disappointing on both ends in LC.
May 24, 2014 - 12:55 PM EDT
Wow Tony, great to see Jason Knapp out there. Is there any reason he is w the Rangers and not the Indians- did the Indians not pay him for the surgery and DL time? Also, Milbrath and Heller give up 1 hit in 6 innings and can't win a game. Except for 1 or 2 guys, Lake County is scary bad. Is it poor drafting or is the hitting coach bad?
May 24, 2014 - 12:25 PM EDT
How many rehab games is Kipnis scheduled for before he is activated of the DL?

How many strong outings by Adam Miller would put him as a potential bullpen guy for the Indians? So far he is looking good.

Nick S
May 24, 2014 - 10:46 AM EDT
Tony, do you think the farm system will move Milbrath to Carolina soon? Even though he,s 1-5 his era 2.89, lake county not scoring for any of their pitchers. I think it help him mind wise. Iknow if I was pitching at lake County this year I be in nut house now.

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