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Around the Farm: May 25, 2012

Around the Farm: May 25, 2012
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Around the Farm was originated here at Indians Prospect Insider, and 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.

Jared Goedert (DH, Columbus): 1-for-4, R, HR, 4 RBI, K.

Goedert has been a man on a mission this season. He started the season down at Double-A Akron and was asked to make a position change to left field. Instead of pouting like a lot of players might do – especially one who has had so much previous Double-A and Triple-A success at the plate – he went out and just let his performance do the talking. And talking he has done as he has been absolutely amazing in the 41 games he has played this season. He blasted through Double-A Akron and hit .395 with 5 HR, 17 RBI and a 1.089 OPS in 35 games before being promoted to Triple-A Columbus last week. Since being called up all he has done is get at least one hit in each of his six games and is hitting .318 with 3 HR, 12 RBI and a 1.073 OPS. On top of that, he has reached base via a walk or hit in EVERY game this season. That’s an incredible streak and just shows how consistent he has been from game one to game 41 so far. If the defense in left and right field continues to improve, then I could see him being an option as a right-handed bat off the bench in Cleveland any day.

Thomas Neal (RF, Akron): 2-for-4, 2 R, 2B.

Neal has been on quite a tear over his last 7 games (13-for-27) and has 5 multi-hit games in his last 7 games. His strong effort has pushed his average up from .260 to .307 over that 7-game span. The high batting average is good to see, but he has to start showing some power as he has just 9 extra base hits (no home runs) and a .368 slugging percentage to date. For him to have any chance to become a Major League option he has to show some power as the high batting average just won’t be enough.

  • Jason Donald (CF, Columbus): 2-for-4, 2 R, HR, RBI, BB. Donald continues to play some outfield and also continues to hit at Triple-A. Is he starting to show he is a 4A kind of player, a player that is too good for Triple-A but not good enough for the big leagues?
  • Cord Phelps (2B, Columbus): 4-for-5, 2 R. Phelps is starting to find some holes and in his last 3 games he is 7-for-12 at the plate. I’m a little concerned about the significant drop in his walk-rate this season.
  • Matt LaPorta (1B, Columbus): 0-for-5. LaPorta is not doing a very good job of dispelling the notion he can only hit at Huntington Park as after his 0-for-5 night he is now hitting .254/.343/.356 on the road.
  • Russ Canzler (LF, Columbus): 0-for-4, K. Canzler has been a disappointment this season as he is now hitting just .274 with 3 HR, 13 RBI and a .729 OPS in 45 games. He’s fallen off the map as a hitting option in Cleveland as Goedert has surpassed him.
  • David Huff (SP, Columbus): 6.0 IP, 8 H, 3 R/ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 1 HR. Another solid performance by Huff who really looks to have ironed out some delivery issues. His command is better as he has just 4 walks in 30.1 total innings between Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus.
  • Scott Barnes (RP, Columbus): 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 1 K. Barnes needs 22 pitches (13 strikes) to get through his one inning of work. He’s in the bullpen because that is the role the Indians believe he can help the big league team in this season.
  • Chun Chen (1B, Akron): 0-for-4, 2 K. Chen took the collar last night and ended his modest 7-game hitting streak in the process. You have to love the .316 average and .393 on-base percentage, but even though .430 is an okay slugging percentage, he needs to be more productive and pile up more extra base hits.
  • Kyle Bellows (3B, Akron): 1-for-3, R, BB, K. Bellows continues to hit and get on base as he reached base in two of four plate appearances last night. He has not had an extra base hit in his last four games, but he has reached base 7 times via a single or walk.
  • Matt Lawson (2B, Akron): 0-for-3, RBI, K. Welcome back to Mr. Lawson who made his first appearance for Akron after being added to the roster from extended spring training. He had retired last season but came back this year and is now getting another shot in Akron.
  • Michel Hernandez (C, Akron): 3-for-3, 2B, BB. Hernandez has only been playing once every five days in order to give way to Roberto Perez, but Perez got dinged up last night and he responded with a perfect 4-for-4 night reaching base.
  • T.J. McFarland (SP, Akron): 5.0 IP, 8 H, 7 R/ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR. Yuck. That was by far TJ-Mac’s worst outing of the year as he had not allowed more than 3 runs in any outing, and he was coming off three straight starts where he went 7.0 innings and allowed 1 total run in all three starts.
  • Loek Van Mil (RP, Akron): 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K. Van Mil came in relief of McFarland and closed out the game and saved the bullpen with three exceptional innings of work. Since coming to the Indians he has allowed just 1 run in 11.0 innings and has 12 strikeouts.
  • Jesus Aguilar (1B, Carolina): 1-for-3, R, 3B, 2 RBI, BB, K. Aguilar has quietly had a good season. I say quietly because he has not piled up many homers and RBI, but because he is hitting .300 through 44 games and continues to show a better approach with each game he plays.
  • Jeremie Tice (DH, Carolina): 1-for-4, K. Tice has cooled off some as he is just 5-for-21 with 7 strikeouts in his last 6 games. He has also struck out at least one time in his last 9 games.
  • Carlos Moncrief (RF, Carolina): 2-for-4, 2 R, 2B, HR, 2 RBI, K. You gotta love the .794 OPS, 17 extra base hits, and powerful arm, but the 54 strikeouts in 143 innings is not good. He has multi-strikeout games in 6 of his last 9 games and has struck out 17 times in his last 9 games (35 at bats).
  • Francisco Jimenez (SP, Carolina): 5.0 IP, 9 H, 6 R/ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 3 HR. Jimenez was not fooling anyone last night as he failed to strike out a batter and served up 3 homers. That was easily his worst outing of the season.
  • Kyle Petter (RP, Carolina): 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K. Slowly but surely it appears that Petter is getting some things straightened out. Since arriving in Carolina he has 14 walks in 18.1 innings, but in his last 6.1 innings he has allowed just 1 run on 3 hits, 2 walks, and has 4 strikeouts.
  • Todd Hankins (LF, Lake County): 2-for-4, R, BB, K. Hankins has been playing a lot more of late, though he has yet to really take advantage of it hitting just .222/.349/.361 his last 10 games.
  • Francisco Lindor (SS, Lake County): 1-for-5, 2B, 2 K. Lindor has cooled off of late as in his last 6 games he is just 3-for-25 at the plate.
  • Luigi Rodriguez (DH, Lake County): 3-for-4, 2 R, 2 RBI, BB. That is now 3 straight multi-hit games for L-Rod, and he is now 7-for-14 at the plate during those 3 games. He was off to a great April start, so maybe he is heating up at the end of May and getting ready for a big June.
  • Jordan Smith (RF, Lake County): 0-for-1, K. Don’t worry folks, Smith did not leave the game early because of injury. He was ejected in the first inning after arguing with the umpire over his strikeout.
  • Zach MacPhee (CF, Lake County): 3-for-4, R, 2 RBI. An encouraging night from MacPhee, and one of his best showings of the season. He is still getting comfortable in the outfield, so hopefully as he settled in there he also can settle into the box.
  • Joseph Colon (SP, Lake County): 6.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R/ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR. Colon threw his 5th straight quality start and continues to look strong as a starting pitching prospect. He does not wow you when you watch him, but so far he is getting results.
  • Jeff Johnson (RP, Lake County): 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K. Johnson racked up his 8th save of the season and has been unbelievable his last 13 outings going 16.0 innings and allowing 6 hits, 6 walks, and piled up 24 strikeouts.

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 28, 2012 - 11:59 AM EDT
Goedert has value to the Indians. He was added to the 40-man just a year and half ago, so there is clear value there. Nothing has changed with regard to their opinion with the plays. But the problem is finding him a position where he can play in the big leagues. That's why he has made a full time conversion to the outfield and why he opened in AA. He's probably option #2 after LaPorta goes as far as right-handed bats go. He's surpassed Canzler.
May 27, 2012 - 4:30 AM EDT
Jack, I'm pretty sure that's changed as the season has progressed. I think Goedert was viewed as filler, but has clearly peaked their interest as the season has progressed. I still don't think they look at Goedert as a major league, everyday starter, but I do feel like they see him as potentially filling a hole should someone get injured or as a platoon option. If he keeps hitting, we could have a very interesting decision coming up soon
May 26, 2012 - 10:11 PM EDT
I saw that game in Erie. McFarland cruised through the first three facing the minimum. Erie started the fourth with seven consecutive hits, the first five were all bad hops or seeing eye dribblers. The sixth and seventh were stroked including the three run bomb which finished the scoring. Even so that is the first homerun that TJ had yielded this year. It was a bad night , but I think he will rebound next time out.
May 26, 2012 - 7:31 PM EDT
Do the Indians' braintrust consider Goedert a prospect or just organization filler?
May 26, 2012 - 2:09 PM EDT
I'm actually not so worried about the starting pitching options in the minors. Some good depth stocked away at AAA with McAllister, Huff and Slowey. Some others like McFarland, Wright, and Packer (when he is healthy) in Akron, and beyond that lots of interesting arms with good upside.

Crowe should be back any day. Also I would not expect Washington to play anywhere but in Arizona late in the year (if that).

Now, I agree on the position player front. Very few immediate options to turn to and it is a problem (and showing to be one right now with Santana, Cabrera, and Hafner all out now a few games).
May 26, 2012 - 7:38 AM EDT
Brics's concerns are legit. We don't have starting pitching depth and the same applies for position players. We get a slew of injuries like last season and we are toast. How long is Hafner out? Hannahan has a gimpy back that's a concern.

When will Crowe be able to play again? He's better than the trio of dead wood (Damon, Duncan and Cunningham)

Will L Washington play again this year in Lake County?
May 26, 2012 - 3:58 AM EDT
I'm concerned about the dwindling supply of potential major league starters in the minors.
Huff may be coming around, McCallister pitched pretty well, but Rondon is out, Knapp is a memory, Hernandez (Carmona) hasn't even received a visa yet and will receive a suspension when he does.
{(Leo Nunez-No-More) just got both.}
Kluber is being rocked.
Seddon, Slowey, & Berger are getting hit hard, and TJ McFarland, in AA, just got bombed tonight.
Barnes is in the bullpen.
Two injuries at Cleveland and things might get desperate.

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