Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Composite Prospect Rankings, #40-#31

As I described yesterday, I'll be taking a look at the Twins' prospects' performance this year, and how it's affected their status from the beginning of the year.  Today I'll explore prospects 40 through 31.

The number in parentheses is where that person ranked the player.  Click the number for the link to the quote provided.  Keep in mind that all quotes were written at some point during the off-season.

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40. Steve Singleton, 2B
--Seth Stohs (27): "Good D at 2B... If needed today, he could perform well enough to not hurt the team at all."
--DJL44, fan (37): ".750 OPS at AA is nothing special.  If he was above .800 in AAA I could see him as a prospect."
Assigned to AA for a third season, Singleton did hit a little better, nearing the .800 mark in OPS.  Upon a promotion to Rochester, however, he struggled, getting on base under 30 percent of the time and hitting doubles at a much lower rate than in AA, signifying a loss of power too.  Because of those numbers, and some off-the-field issues, Singleton was released a month ago on July 17th.  He signed a minor league contract with Philadelphia.
--Result: Released

39. Danny Rams, C/1B
--roger13 (33): "Power-hitting catcher...took a big step forward last year when nearly half of his hits went for extra bases."
--Aaron Gleeman (37): "He really hasn't developed one bit.  He still swings at everything, still strikes out a ton, and still has people questioning whether he can remain a catcher long term."
After playing the last season-and-a-half with Beloit, Rams moved up to High-A Ft. Myers to start the 2011 season.  Once more, he's shown little ability to adjust his approach, as he has made only very modest improvement to his plate discipline.  His strikeout rate of 29 percent is down slightly from last year, while his walk rate is up slightly to over 8 percent.  These small gains are easily outweighed by the fact that his power has dropped off significantly, with his slugging down to .366 and his ISO down 75 points to .131.
--Result: Downgrade

38. Bobby Lanigan, RHP
--Seth Stohs (20): "Has a good fastball and all reports indicate he has a terrific slider.  To me, he could be a very successful reliever."
--cmathewson, fan (41): "The jury is out as to whether he can become a good reliever in the majors."
Lanigan returned to AA after making 8 starts there in 2010.  He's continued to start, throwing almost 130 innings over 23 games.  His walk rate is very solid, but it's actually the highest it's ever been, and other than that he hasn't shown anything to get excited about.  His piddly strikeout rate of 5.6/9 and the 160 hits allowed in 129.1 innings have led to a less-than-stellar 4.73 ERA and 1.62 WHIP.  Perhaps he has a chance as a reliever, but he doesn't appear to have a future as a big league starter.
--Result: Downgrade

37. Martire Garcia, LHP
--Seth Stohs (29): "Throws hard, good movement.  Young."
--Aaron Gleeman (31): "He's one of the leading candidates to make a big jump up this list in 2012...for now Garcia's rank is on the conservative side and based more on his potential than actual performance."
The owner of some big strikeout rates in previous years, Garcia's rate went down a little at Beloit this season, but was still over one per inning.  The big problem was his control, which he'd had issues with before.  It fell apart completely this season, as he walked 5 men in his first outing, his only start, and finished with 25 walks in 21 innings spread over 14 games.  He pitched in his last game on May 21st, after which he was released.
--Result: Released

36. Kyle Waldrop, RHP
--roger13 (15): "A candidate to be part of the Twins bullpen at some time next year [2011]."
--Seth Stohs (50): "Throws strikes and gets ground balls."
Waldrop has spent the 2011 season at AAA, pitching fairly similarly to the way he did at the same level in 2010.  His strikeout rate has dipped from a little over 6 K/9 to just over 5 K/9, but his walk rate remains very good, hovering around 2 BB/ 9.  The fact that his 70 innings of relief this season haven't been any better than last season isn't a good sign, but Waldrop didn't appear as if he would be a difference maker in the bullpen anyways.  He could still get a call-up in September, but it's looking less likely that he'll be a part of the Twins future.
--Result: Slight downgrade

35. James Beresford, SS
--Aaron Gleeman (24): "Slowly but surely adding some power at the plate to go along with what has always been an outstanding glove."
--b1, fan (39): "ZERO power.  Unless he put[s] on some size, he'll be a back-up."
The 22-year old moved up to Ft. Myers to open the season and has struggled there.  The power he was adding disappeared, as his ISO dropped from an ugly .065 in 2010 to a totally negligible .031.  He's continued to exhibit good bat control, striking out infrequently, but a .328 OBP and .303 SLG at High-A aren't encouraging.  He's also been quite inefficient on the basepaths, swiping 41 bases on 78 attempts in his minor league career, and 4 of 10 this year.
--Result: Downgrade

34. Nate Roberts, OF
--John Sickels (17): "Another '10 draft sleeper.  Solid tools and consistent production."
--Aaron Gleeman (30): "Dominating in a lower-level college conference and then beating up on rookie-ball pitchers hardly guarantees future success."
Roberts has followed up his excellent season at Rookie-ball with a good season at Beloit.  His power has fallen, but his ISO is a still-respectable .123.  His biggest asset is his on-base percent, which for the second straight season is at least .440, despite a decent-but-not-great walk rate of 9.6 %.  What's buoyed his OBP are the 27 occasions on which he's been hit by a pitch in just 260 plate appearances.  He showed a similar ability (yes, ability) in college, so if he can maintain it, he will be significantly more valuable.
--Result: Slight upgrade

33. Luke Hughes, IF
--roger13 (25): "Has one of the more exciting right-handed bats in the organization."
--Seth Stohs (35): "OK at Rochester, but again was injured... Potential big league super utility bat and pinch hitter."
Not only has Hughes has managed to stay healthy this year, he's spent a majority of it with the big league club.  His performance, however, hasn't been all that good.  His .274 wOBA certainly didn't play at first base, the position he played the most, and was only tolerable at second base because of the Twins' lack of other options.  Back in AAA now, his power has returned and he's cut down on his strikeouts, but he's been held back by an unlucky BABIP (.250).  Although he no longer qualifies as a prospect and didn't look good in the majors, Hughes remains one of the few players in the high minors of the Twins system with any semblance of power potential.
--Result: Graduated (Slight downgrade)

32. Dakota Watts, RHP
--Aaron Gleeman (29): "Projects as a potential late-inning reliever if things break right... One of the rare pitching prospects not to fit the Twins' preferred mold."
--Seth Stohs (41): "Some control issues, but the guy throws consistently in the upper 90s."
To this point in the 2011 season, things have not broken right.  Watts returned to High-A Ft. Myers to begin the year, and pitched significantly worse.  His strikeout rate (6.44) was well below his previous low for any stretch of time and his walk rate remained about the same as in 2010.  Still, after 29.1 mediocre innings, Watts was promoted to New Britain at the end of June.  His strikeouts have rebounded somewhat, but remain lower than in any other season, and his walks have jumped back up to over 5 per 9 innings.  As a result, he's allowed 28 runs (24 earned) in 24 innings at AA.
--Result: Downgrade

31. Scott Diamond, LHP
--cmathewson, fan (26): "He could be another [Craig] Breslow... Doesn't throw hard but gets a lot of strikeouts."
--Aaron Gleeman (36): "His strikeout and walk rates have been mediocre... He could begin 2011 in a long relief role [with the Twins]."
Diamond's unsightly 4-13 record and 5.42 ERA in Triple-A this season are very misleading.  While he hasn't been a star, his peripherals suggest that he has pitched solidly and merely been the victim of some bad luck.  He's striking out more batters than last year with the Braves' AAA affiliate, and his strikeout-to-walk rate is up also, though they could still be described as mediocre.  His FIP of 3.74 more accurately reflects Diamond's performance in 2011, which isn't far off from his career minor league numbers.
--Result: No change

That's all for today!  Keep coming back to read the rest.

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