Around the Farm: September 13, 2014
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.
Ivan Castillo (SS) – 2-4, 1 R, 1 K – Castillo has the lone multi-hit night for the Captains as a rough Midwest LeagueChampionship Series and exciting season come to an end for the Lake County side. Castillo struggled mightily in the playoffs with Saturday night’s hits representing his first since the opening round series. He also had an uneven regular season hitting .260/.293/.365 with 5 HR, 26 RBI, and 11/17 in SB attempts in 84 games, all with Lake County, but all three portions of his slash line were either career bests or close to it (he posted a .308 average in his rookie season in the Dominican Summer League in 2012) and he did so following a two-level jump from the Arizona League. Not bad for a guy who had never played in front of a large crowd of fans until this season. I am excited to see what he can do next year with a shallower learning curve.
- Clint Frazier (CF) – 1-3, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K – Another player who made a two-level jump ends his first full pro season with a fairly representative night. His batting average was not the greatest (.266), but he posted solid OBP (.349) and SLG (.411) numbers. Again, he can only benefit from having more experience and a less ambitious adjustment to make next season.
- Bradley Zimmer (RF) – 0-4 – Zimmer’s brief full-season A-ball preview stint ends uneventfully. The real story, however, will be what he can do with a full season at the A-level next year. I anticipate big things from Bradley at the corner of SOM Center and Vine next summer, though chances are he opens the season at High-A Carolina instead.
- Nellie Rodriguez (1B) – 0-4, 2 K – Nellie-Rod had an off night on this night, but had a nice season, especiallyh in regards to his power numbers (.214 ISO with 22 HR and 88 RBI in 130 games for the Caps this summer). If he can keep up these kind of numbers as he progresses through the system, he could find himself playing at Progressive Field in a few years.
- Anderson Polanco (SP) – L (1-1 in the playoffs, 3-0 in the regular season), 4.1 IP, 7 H, 4 R (all earned), 2 BB, 5 K, 1 HR allowed, 1 WP – This rough outing was in no way indicative of the solid season that preceded it. He posted a 1.95 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, and .178 opponents’ BA in 19 games (6 starts) in a year that saw him transition back to the starting role in which he began his career with the 2011 Dominican Summer League Indians.
- Robbie Aviles (RP) – 1.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R (all unearned) – Don’t worry, Aviles hasn’t forgotten how to pitch. He just happened to be on the mound when 3B Paul Hendrix temporarily forgot how to field the hot corner and had two errors in the sixth inning.
- Justin Brantley (RP) – 1.1 IP, 2 H, 1 K – Brantley had a brief professional debut season, but his rookie campaign was impressive with a 1.31 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, and .204 opponents BA in 25 relief appearances. These numbers for a guy making the jump from the college ranks straight to full-season pro ball indicate a player who should be exciting to watch the next few years as he progresses through the system.
I'm not sure Zimmer plays in Carolina, if he does, it's likely for only part of the season. If the Indians continue to develop Zimmer and Frazier as CF it will be tough to get them playing time unless they rotate in / out of CF. I think Zimmer could slide into AA and adjust qkly, it seems unlikely but Zimmer is an advanced.
Justin Brantley came out of nowhere, and Anderson Polanco seems to have some upside as a LHSP. Some good prospects to follow next Spring. I can't wait to see them out there.