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Around The Farm: May 7, 2013

Bauer flirts with no-hitter while Michael Bourn begins rehab assignment

Around The Farm:  May 7, 2013
May 8, 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.

Michael Bourn (Columbus - Game 1, CF) -1-3, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 SB – Bourn’s road back to the show begins with a solid night at the plate.  While it is Triple-A, it is good to see that Bourn’s hitting stroke is still intact after his time on the DL.  Also, his baserunning seems to have not suffered any rust from the layoff.  The sooner he can get into Major League shape, the better for the Big Club.

Trevor Bauer (Columbus – Game 1, SP) – 6.2 IP, 0 H, 2 R (both earned), 4 BB, 7 K, 1 WP, 4 HBP, No Decision – All evening, Bauer walked a tightrope and kept the light-hitting Clips in the opener, but didn’t get a chance to finish the job in the bottom of the seventh (more on the reasons for that later).  While a supremely-gifted pitcher in both the physical and mental aspects of the discipline, Bauer is prone to these odd outings where he seems to have forgotten how to control the baseball.  While the consistency issues posed by such outings are a concern, they may just be the price that needs to be paid to have an unorthodox pitching savant like Bauer on the staff.

Kyle Landis (Akron, RP) – 0.1 IP, 1 H, 3 R (all earned), 2 BB, Hold, Loss – Kyle Landis’ return to Akron may be short lived as Landis left the mound accompanied by Aeros trainer Chad Wolfe after throwing only 15 pitches.  Given the uneven (at best) nature of his season thus far, his future in the organization is hardly helped by the specter of significant time on the DL.  For stat nerds like me, the rare combination of a hold and a loss on the same pitching line is also of note.

  • Cord Phelps (Columbus – Game 1, 2B) – 0-2, 1 R, 1 BB, 1 SB – While he did manage a walk and some solid baserunning, it is disconcerting to see yet another hitless night from Phelps.
  • Omir Santos (Columbus – Game 1, C) – 3-3 – Not much to say here except to congratulate Omir on his perfect night at the plate.  Nothing spectacular in the other columns of the boxscore, but still perfect.
  • Preston Guilmet (Columbus - Game 1, RP) – 0.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R (both earned), 1 HR allowed, Loss, Blown Save – While bringing in the closer was the obvious choice when Bauer’s control issues led to a tie game, it didn’t end well as Guilmet completed the implosion, including a two-run homer off the bat of Knights 3BBrent Morel. In Guilmet’s defense, I’m not sure anyone could have rescued the rat fiesta that the top of the seventh had become.
  • Tim Fedroff (Columbus – Game 2, CF) – 2-4, 1 K – Fedroff continues his three-game streak of hitting exactly .500.
  • Matt Lawson (Columbus – Game 2, 2B) – 1-4, 1 RBI, 2 K – Lawson only got on base once, but it proved to be big as his RBI single in the bottom of the sixth drove in the winning run.
  • Cord Phelps (Columbus - Game 2, 1B) – 2-2, 1 2B, 1 BB – A refreshing departure from his performance in the opener, as well as most of the rest of the season.
  • Brett Brach (Columbus – Game 2, SP) – 5 IP, 4 H, 1 R (earned), 1 BB, 8 K, 1 WP, 1 BK, No Decison – A very good night on the mound in his 2013 Triple-A debut (and his second game ever at the level).  Lack of run support cost him the decision.
  • Fernando Nieve (Columbus – Game 2, RP) – 2 IP, perfect, 5 K – Near-perfect baseball from the Clips reliever kept the team in the game long enough for the offense to step up and take the win in the nightcap.
  • Justin Toole (Akron, 2B) – 2-3, 2 RBI, 1 BB – A good night at the plate, including a two-RBI single in the fifth inning. This seems to indicate a hitter getting used to his new level (albeit on in which he had 11 games of experience prior to this year) very quickly.
  • Chun Chen (Akron, DH) – 1-2, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 Sacrifice Fly – Chun Chen continues to hit, even managing to be productive in recording an out (Sacrifice Fly in the third inning).  The main impediment ot his Major League prospects is the recent decline in the prevalence of the full-time DH.
  • Giovanny Urshela (Akron, 3B) – 2-3, 1 R – Gio’s recent strong form at the plate continues, with his hitting streal reaching five games.  If he can keep this up, he may get above .300 soon.
  • Danny Salazar (Akron, SP) – 5 IP, 5 H, 1 R (earned), 1 BB, 8 K, No Decision – While his fifth inning was not the greatest effort ever, the fact that he was pulled after only five innings (and 73 pitches) is disconcerting, especially as the trainer had been called out to check on him an inning prior.
  • Jerrud Sabourin (Carolina, 1B) – 1-4, 1 R, 2 RBI, 1 K, 1 HR – The Undrafted Wonder’s strong season continues with a two-run homer that supplied exactly half of the Mudcats’ run output tonight.
  • Luigi Rodriguez (Carolina, LF) – 2-4, 2 K, 1 2B – It was feast or famine for L-Rod tonight as he either hit or struck out in every plate appearance.
  • Zach MacPhee (Carolina, DH) – 1-3, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 HR – Another prime example of getting only one hit but making it count.
  • Joe Colon (Carolina, SP) – 6 IP, 3 H, 4 R (all earned), 3 BB, 3 K – In only his second Advanced Single-A outing, it is clear that Joe is still trying to figure the level out
  • Owen Dew (Carolina, RP) – 2 IP, 1 H, 2 R (1 earned), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HR allowed, Loss – A rare bad night from Owen (combined with a Yhoxian Medina throwing error) sunk the Mudcats’ ship tonight.

User Comments

Tony
May 8, 2013 - 5:02 PM EDT
Chen is having a very good season, but I think people need to use perspective as to his major league value. Remember, Jared Goedert got off to an impressive start last season much like Chen's this season....went to Columbus....and the Indians made no attempt to resign him. The fact that Chen opened in AA again, was left exposed in the Rule 5 Draft (and also was not taken), and has his limitations beyond his bat really makes his future one that is in doubt. If he is not rostered this season, he will leave the organization since he is a minor league free agent at the end of the year. That all said, I agree, he should be in Columbus and I think at some point here he will be sent there.

As for Tomlin, he's still a long way from returning. He very likely will be on the Carrasco timeline where he *maybe* throws in a game at Akron or Columbus at the end of August or in September. He likely won't pitch in Cleveland this year.
Matthew
May 8, 2013 - 1:33 PM EDT
One of those quirks to pitching decisions. Landis came into the game with the lead with the tying run on deck, recorded one out, put some baserunners on, and when he exited the game, the lead was still in tact. Thus, a Hold. However, the baserunners he was responsible for eventually came around to score, so he was the pitcher of record for the Loss.

Hold is a goofy designation is the bottom line, I guess.
Brandon
May 8, 2013 - 1:09 PM EDT
How did Landis get a hold and a loss in the same appearance? Seems impossible.
Arthur
May 8, 2013 - 12:27 PM EDT
Thanks for the information, Stephanie! Also didn't hurt in that it gave him more time to get to the Greyhound station to get the bus to Columbus.
Homer
May 8, 2013 - 10:52 AM EDT
Art,

I think you hit the nail on the head RE: Trevor Bauer - he is a pitching savant - he understands the mental and physical dynamics of pitching and IMHO appears to still be working his way through a few minor adjustments...But, when things begin to click for him - watch out - he could truly be special.
Matthew
May 8, 2013 - 10:44 AM EDT
Yeah, I'm guessing (pure speculation) that the 5/85 limit is being lifted with this promotion. I could be wrong, and they might leave him on the 5/85 limit for another month or two, but that's just my guess. Columbus' rotation is pretty solid now, with Bauer-Carrasco-House-Salazar (although Salazar may be taking Bauer's spot in the rotation.)

In other good news, I saw Tomlin has thrown a few 60-pitch bullpen sessions in the last week. If nothing goes wrong with his rehab, he'll be back as a depth option some time in the 2nd half.
Criznit Rulez
May 8, 2013 - 10:27 AM EDT
Also Chen has stolen 7 bases this year without being caught. not saying he is a speedster by any means but yeah, he is clearly ready to join the columbus roster.
Stephanie
May 8, 2013 - 10:14 AM EDT
Salazar has been on a 5 inning or 85 pitch count all season so far. He said it's just been precaution from his surgery back in 2010.
shy
May 8, 2013 - 9:51 AM EDT
Danny Z coming to Columbus is awesome. They need starting pitching- but so does Akron and Carolina for that matter. I am concerned they are pulling him at low pitch counts and promoting him at the same time, that doesn't seem smart.
Steve Kinsella
May 8, 2013 - 9:23 AM EDT
Trainers visit to mound came after a one-hopper glanced off Salazar's calf. First Perez and Aguilar came out and gave him a minute...everything seemed fine but Hibbard and trainer came out just to make sure.
Matthew
May 8, 2013 - 8:46 AM EDT
Yeah, not sure what they do with Chen at this point. 1B is the only position he could possibly play, and even there his glove is solidly below average. If the power continues to show, maybe there's a bench spot available for a RH bat that can play the occasional 1B next year. I have to think when the everyday 1B job at Columbus opens up, it'll be given to Aguilar over Chen. Chen just needs to keep hitting, and hitting for power. If he does that, maybe he'll get a part time DH/1B role with the 2014 Tribe.

I guess if you can get something for him, it makes sense to trade him, but I doubt you could get anything more than a middle reliever or a lower level prospect. There's a reason they left him exposed in rule 5.
Rich
May 8, 2013 - 8:29 AM EDT
Chen is tearing it up. He's leading the Eastern League with an OPS of 1.009. He's hitting .333 with 5 HR's and 24 RBI's in only 102 AB's.

Multiply those numbers by five and you have 510 AB's, 25 HR's, 120 RBI's to go along with the .333 average.

OK, so they're not using a full-time DH anymore, but this guy's bat should play somewhere. First base? I don't know, we have Swisher locked up for five years, Reynolds is on fire, and Santana has also been playing some first base. The way Gomes is performing defensively at catcher, they may want to play Santana at first more often. I think Gomes is going to hit, too.

I think someone compared Chen to Ryan Garko. He may end up as a trading chip, although I doubt he'd bring much unless he establishes that he can hit at the major league level first. There are too many guys like Andy Marte, Matt LaPorta, and Cord Phelps that tore it up in the minors but couldn't hit squat in the bigs.
Matthew
May 8, 2013 - 8:06 AM EDT
Thankfully, Salazar is not injured. In fact, this morning he was promoted to AAA. I'm excited to see him here in Columbus!

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