First week was a pretty sad week if you are following San Jose as some storm or sort rained out most of the games for the week. If you are following Augusta, it will be a roller coaster ride as the toolsy prospects are still getting acclimated to full season baseball and just starting to get their routine. Richmond is a good spot for following the best prospects for the Giants this year while Sacramento is not far behind, with players that look like Major League-ready. Overall this month, even though the win-loss record is not pretty across all levels, there are still positive notes on the individual performances of the prospects.
Stats updated up to April 30, 2016 9-10 PM PH time (9-10 AM ET)
The Bad: 2 errors in SS in 17 games, 0 HR and .097 ISO
One of the youngest in AA, Arroyo is holding his own in the first month, proven by his solid numbers this month but in his last 10 games, he is just batting .220. The lack of power numbers is pretty expected as he's more of a gap hitter and his walks and K rates are trending to the right direction where his hit tool will be an elite one. He is looking pretty good in other defensive positions but the Giants are still not trying him out in the outfield. That said, I believe that he will get out of his funk sometime soon and start to get hot.
The Bad: 4.71 ERA, 12.43 H/9, 1.62 WHIP .337 AVG, .422 BABIP
Phil Bickford RHP A
The Good: 1.31 FIP, 14.37 K/9 (!!!), 1.74 BB/9 (!!!), 6.1 H/9, 0.87 WHIP, 3.48 ERA, .184 AVG
The Bad: .326 BABIP, 0.53 GO/AO, 60.0% AVG
He might be the hottest topic in the Giants minor leagues right now. From his funky delivery to his fastball that is probably the best fastball in the 90 MPH range possibly in all of baseball, he has been sensational in the SAL, making hitters look like unworthy. His latest start erased his 5-ish ERA to a respectable 3.47 but his peripherals are what will blow you away especially the ridiculous K/BB ratio. His slider looks like a very solid pitch if it is more consistent and one changeup that he threw actually fades well (from all other that he threw that's pretty bad that I saw). His extreme flyball tendency hopefully will not be a problem and is fastball will be tested once he moves up a level soon but for now, enjoy the freak show.
Lucius Fox SS A
The Good: 100% SB (6/6), 13.3 BB%, .140 ISO, 2 HR
The Bad: Poor offensive line (.200/.310/.340), .308 wOBA, 33.3 K%, 6.33 GO/AO, 5 errors
This is what I expect from Fox with his very aggressive assignment to Augusta this season. The horrible numbers to start the season because of his overall rawness and tasting this level of competition ever since moving to the Bahamas. But what I love is his fearlessness on the bases as his speed can really change a ball game, surprisingly walking at a good rate for someone his age, and his raw power turning to good game power with his 2 April HRs. It might be a good thing for him to struggle first because struggles can really bring the best out of a ballplayer and I believe that Fox can get over the hump some time in the mid-season.
Chris Shaw 1B A+
The Good: Great offensive line (.352/.413/.606), 167 wRC+, .423 BABIP, 1 E in 14 Games
The Bad: Worse BB and K% (7.5 & 22.3 vs 9.5 & 20.5 last year)
There's no possibly a hotter hitter in the Giants minors right now than Chris Shaw, riding a 6-game hitting streak, batting 12-24 in that span with all of his 3 HRs this season. After being ice cold in the first week, Shaw has turned it around, batting .397 (25-63) 16 games after the cold streak. I would love if he had taken more walks and less Ks but I think that the BB and K rates are tied to his cold start. The BABIP will go down surely but he's exceeding my expectations right now for him.
Sam Coonrod RHP A+
The Good: 2.95 ERA vs 3.14 FIP, 0 HR, 1.19 WHIP, 1.92 GO/AO
The Bad: 6.87 K/9
Coonrod has been as steady as ever his record only tarnished by his latest start where he allowed 4 earned runs in 5 innings of work. He has been more into the contact side of things, evident by the K/9 and his GO/AO ratio. Would love to see more strikeouts from him because his stuff is just top notch, but with the way things going, he's going to be in for a strong 2016 season in San Jose.
Steven Duggar OF A+
The Good: 15.9 BB%, 152 wRC+, .409 wOBA, 4 HR, .284/.400/.552, .261 ISO, 2 SB, .319 BABIP
The Bad: 22.0 K%
Man, there has not been one prospect that I am more excited about than Steven Duggar. The outfielder has gone leaps and bounds this season and people finally starts to notice. He has quadrupled his home run total from last year, put up great numbers this season while maintaining a fairly average BABIP. The fixed swing has been beneficiary for him as well as in the top of the lineup where he's causing damage. While he's in a cold slump, batting just .200 in his last 10 games, what he really did earlier is something special. The move to the 6th in the batting order might've contributed to that as he got no protection against the big boys in the lineup of San Jose, but he has been contributing with his outstanding BB%. The Ks are all right, but would love to see him chase less. That said, I think that moving Duggar back to the near top of the order will possibly turn his bat hot again and do spectacular things like the guy that I have picked to be the breakout performer this season.
Johneshwy Fargas OF A+
The Good: Better BB% (9.1 vs 6.1 last year), 3 3B
The Bad: 6 CS vs 5 SB, .615 OPS, Higher K% (23.9 vs 14.2), .285 wOBA, .219/.313/.301 line
For me, Fargas has been pretty disappointing for me, especially in the stolen bases department. 6 caught stealing (now 7) versus 5 stolen bases is not really good at all. His overaggressiveness or the lack of base stealing instincts has left me pretty disappointed. Offensively, he has been scuffling too. While I love the walks that he's taking, he's not really converting it well because of the caught stealing. He's aggressive in base running when in ball's in play which is very nice. Could love to have him better but right now, looks like he's being beaten by himself in San Jose. Would love his arm in the mound if this never works.
Aramis Garcia C A+
The Good: 13.1 BB%, Better K% (23.0 vs 26.2 last year), 99 wRC+, 0 errors,
The Bad: average overall offensive numbers
Aramis Garcia's second time in San Jose has been going good so far, posting better numbers this year than last but the numbers are still pretty below from what I am expecting from him as a offense-first catcher. Zero errors this month has been pretty golden in my opinion as he's problematic there. I look forward to a solid season from him.
Ronnie Jebavy OF A+
The Good: Better BB% (7.3 vs 3.1 last year), 2 2B
The Bad: .183/.275/.254, 30.5 K%, 5 CS vs 1 SB, .259 wOBA, 55 wRC+, 0.69 ISO
From one of the most solid guys on the list last year, Jebavy has been on a very bad slump in April, evident by the numbers. What's more depressing is his 5 caught stealing, looking like he's very lost right now. The defense is still the same but I have foreseen it last season, with his lack of walks and looks like he's needed to have some kind of spark in his bat to turn it around.
Jordan Johnson RHP A+
The Good: 2.00 ERA, better BB/9 (2.00 vs 2.87 last year in A+), .164 AVG, 0.78 WHIP, better LOB% (79.4 vs 67.8 in A+ last year)
The Bad: 6.00 K/9, 3.75 FIP
He has been as solid as you can get in the rotation in San Jose. His velocity is now in the low-90s range consistently than last year, which he possibly has added another pitch, possibly a sinker, that help him get better ground balls with the expense of less Ks. He I think is taking the Tyler Beede path right now. But I am not very concerned as his secondary pitches are solid.
Rodolfo Martinez RHP A+
The Good: 1.08 ERA, 5/6 Saves
The Bad: Worse K/9 (6.48 vs 8.61 last year), Worse BB/9 (4.32 vs 2.74 last year), 53.9 LOB%, 3.69 FIP, 1.56 WHIP, .281 AVG
Based on videos, Martinez's mechanics looks like less violent now. His changeup looks like a good out pitch, his fastball is still roaring at high-90s and his slider is still good. There are a lot of things that are going against him right now especially the peripherals but he gets the job done as the closer of San Jose, and that's a good thing.
Andrew Suarez LHP A+
The Good: Better K/9 (11.91 vs 9.16 last year), 1.19 BB/9, 2.78 ERA vs 2.15 FIP, 1.01 WHIP, 1.92 GO/AO, 0 E
The Bad: 70.8 LOB%
The best starter in the SJ rotation right now, Suarez has proven that he has very advanced command and pitchability. His slider has been his main out pitch and his mixing of pitches has been great. He just keeps getting better in every start as the weather heats up and he could be in Richmond next month if he keeps pitching like this and possibly in the Majors. Just a great sight to watch.
Jalen Miller 2B A
The Good: 3 2Bs, 1 3B
The Bad: Poor overall line, worse BB% (2.7 vs 8.6), .236 wOBA, 46 wRC+, 1 CS vs 2 SB
After a hot start, Jalen Miller has been ice cold for two weeks and counting, batting a horrible .117 (6-51) from April 14-30 with 0 XBH, 2 BBs, and 12 Ks in that stretch. I am not exactly sure why he has been very cold right now but it's just like last year in Arizona, where he started hot then went cold all the way to the end of the season. It's too early for concern but there are signs for concern right now as his walk rate has plummeted to just 2.7, really making bad contact right now. Hopefully, things are turning towards the right direction in May.
Kelvin Beltre 3B A
The Good: Better ISO (.143 vs .109)
The Bad: Poor overall numbers
Just like Miller, Beltre is one of the three hyped infielders that most people pegged to have solid seasons that struggled. There's nothing much to write about the stats because all of the numbers are just horrible from last year. Would love to see him perform better.
Mac Marshall LHP A
The Good: 71.4 LOB%, .273 BABIP
The Bad: 5.93 FIP vs 3.97 ERA, worse K/9 (7.94 vs 11.95 & 14.14), 8.74 BB/9, 1.84 WHIP, 0.60 GO/AO
Marshall has been terrible for the start of the 2016 season, giving up almost a walk an inning with less strikeouts. Getting his fastball on command has been a problem for him and when he misses his command, it doesn't offer much else as it is a 87-90 MPH beach ball that has very little lateral break and it gets crushed once left in the middle. Being an extreme flyball pitcher doesn't help. He's really going to need to improve on that fastball command to turn his horrible start around.
Miguel Gomez C A
The Good: .400 BA
The Bad: Only 1 game played
Man, he just can't seem to get playing time right now. Maybe he's got some issues right now that he needs to solve in order for him to play more and get a chance to hit more but once he's stuck on the bench or being the backup catcher, his chances of playing more will go down and down and does his stock.
Michael Santos RHP A
The Good: 2.19 FIP, 0.87 BB/9, Better K/9 (7.84 vs 5.65), 1.26 WHIP
The Bad: 4.35 ERA, 42.3 LOB%, .343 BABIP
His first true start of his Augusta career has produced mixed results, with ups and downs. The stuff still looks the same just like last year, his fastball and curveball is good as well as his command. Just like others, FIP is much better than ERA so expect for the numbers to even out.
Grant Watson LHP A
The Good: 0 BB, 1.32 ERA, 2.17 FIP, .189 BABIP, 0.56 WHIP, .147 AVG
The Bad: 6.59 K/9
I thought that Grant Watson will suck after a pretty bad Salem-Keizer stint last year but boy, I have been so wrong as his command that's his trademark has been on point to start 2016. He may not have any out pitch, his fastball might be underwhelming in velocity but he gets the job done and can locate his pitches so he can be a pretty interesting pitcher to follow.
Ray Black RHP AA
The Good: 19.73 K/9 (!!!!!!), 1.51 FIP, Better BB/9 (7.27 vs 9.00), 1.27 WHIP, 3/3 SV
The Bad: 5.19 ERA, 58.3 LOB%
Ray Black's 104 MPH fastball has been making some waves in Richmond. His K/9 is actually better compared to last year, and has been a beast when nobody's on base. Once hitters get a chance to be on base however, he got a chance to crack. But his peripherals scream otherwise so he has got a chance for the ERA to be toned down if he keeps up his pitching in time and strand runners on base.
Hunter Cole OF AA
The Good: 3 2B
The Bad: Poor offensive numbers
Last year's breakout star has been struggling bad in Richmond this year. His numbers have been harboring on the Mendoza Line and that wRC+ has been down to 53 from 130 last year. His K% and BB% has been worse. I'm just hoping that he improves his numbers in the mid-season because a lot of prospects has been soaring.
Kyle Crick RHP AA
The Good: Better BB/9 (7.04 vs 9.43), Better WHIP (1.57 vs 1.79)
The Bad: 4.70 ERA, 5.35 FIP, 5.28 K/9
He's back to starting again and still, pretty bad results. The hits are still less than an inning but the Ks have gone down dramatically like he's suddenly lost the out pitch. Looks like he's still lost there with his mechanics and it seems that there's no more way out but he just needs to keep on simplifying and grind it out. Still doesn't like the rotation move because he's really fit for the pen.
Chase Johnson RHP AA
The Good: Better BB/9 (3.50 vs 5.27 last year)
The Bad: 6.00 ERA, 4.07 FIP, 7.50 K/9
Johnson has been struggling in his start second time in Richmond, posting more than a hit per inning and just been overall poor numbers. But still, I still have big belief in him and I believe that he will improve his numbers.
Ryder Jones 3B AA
The Good: Better wRC+, wOBA and batting average, Better K% (16.7 vs 18.5)
The Bad: 5 errors in 3B, worse ISO (.111 vs .126), 1.2 BB%
In a rather surprising move for me, Jones was promoted to AA but in his first month, he has performed well, evident by the better batting average. The problem that I see is that he has only taken 1 walk in April. The BABIP gods will get him soon and his defense in third base is not really good at all, evident by his 5 errors. I think it's time for him to move to 1B once and for all for him not to be a liability defensively.
Adalberto Mejia LHP AA
The Good: 11.02 K/9, better FIP than ERA, .227 AVG
The Bad: 3.86 BB/9, 4.41 ERA, 1.22 WHIP
Take his latest start where he allowed 4 ER in 0.2 innings, we are talking about a whole different Mejia this April. He has been rock solid as a starter in Richmond this year and his strikeout stuff is working well so I have to give him some credit. Taking away his bad start, he has just allowed 4 ER in 15.2 IP, so you can do the math that he's been well althroughout other than some minor hiccups. He'll be fine.
Jake Smith RHP AA
The Good: 1.72 FIP, 15.89 K/9, .269 AVG
The Bad: 6.35 BB/9, .417 BABIP, 7.94 ERA, 2.10 WHIP
This is a curious case. How can be allow more than a hit and more than a walk per inning and still have a FIP of 1.72? A lot can be attributed to bad luck there, evident by that .417 BABIP. This time, the FIP just singlehandedly evened out all of the bad that Jake has. That said, the numbers should go down if he pitches consistently out of the bullpen now because he's been on and off in his outings.
Austin Slater OF AA
The Good: 96 wRC+, .314 wOBA, 11.7 BB%, Better ISO (.104 vs .065), .283 BABIP
The Bad: .224 AVG, 24.7 K%
With his average creeping towards the Mendoza Line, Slater has been a solid of a hitter. His BABIP is on the unlucky side right now so the batting average might hurt him. I love that he's walking more this month and I hope that he keeps it up. I think that his batting average will be pulled by his supporting numbers and it should be more on the .260 range in mid-season before thinking about concerns.
Clayton Blackburn RHP AAA
The Good: 2.08 BB/9
The Bad: 4.57 ERA, 4.05 FIP, 1.62 WHIP, 30 hits in 21.2 IP, .330 AVG, 4.98 K/9
Last year's PCL ERA champion is struggling in his first month. The BABIP is ridiculously high (.363) for him to sustain that so his numbers should be better once he gets to a nice groove and his defenders helping him out. He's fine.
Jarrett Parker OF AAA
The Good: 11.11 BB%, .243 BABIP
The Bad: .157 AVG, .584 OPS, 38.3 K%, .129 ISO, 57 wRC+
Last year's very, very strong year has been the complete opposite so far for Parker. Hitting below the Mendoza Line and just a completely awful line. If the BABIP holds the key, his numbers should be better in time so there's hope but taking a look at last year, his BABIP is at a crazy high rate which made his numbers pretty much unsustainable and it shows this year. The Ks are still there and this time, this affects his offensive numbers.
Mac Williamson OF AAA
The Good: (Minors) 1.046 OPS, 4 HR, 17 RBI, 182 wRC+, 17.2 K%
The Bad: Lower BB% (6.9 in AAA)
Looks like Big Mac is ready to contribute to the Major League club. I'm just happy for him as he's been underrated for so long. I didn't put the full numbers but he's just very good and the Giants will help him a lot especially Bam-Bam. Love him a lot.
New Kids on the Block
Tyler Cyr RHP A
The Good: 3.21 ERA vs 3.14 FIP, 14.14 K/9, 3.86 BB/9, 70.5 LOB%, .276 BABIP, 4.25 GO/AO
The Bad: 2 HR allowed
Cyr has been impressive this season in Augusta, picking up the spot where Rodolfo Martinez left. Having an impressive fastball and a curveball the flashes plus, his command of the baseball has been better than last season and he looks like another reliever that the Giants can utilize once he fully develops.
Dillon Dobson 1B A
The Good: 6 HRs, .304 ISO, 163 wRC+, Better BB% (8.0 vs 4.2 in A-), .304/.352/.608, 1 SB
THe Bad: 28.4 K%
Once again, the Giants just keep on hitting it good on the later round picks of the draft. Dobson appears to be this year's Hunter Cole with him drafted in the 25th round last year. He has been the heart and soul of the Augusta lineup that just struggles so much this year. I would love to see him more throughout the season and has stamped his name to prospect lists.
C.J. Hinojosa SS A+
The Good: 13.6 BB%, 16.0 K%, .437 wOBA, 170 wRC+, .382/.468/.515 line, 1 HR (now 2)
The Bad: Less ISO (.129 vs .185 last year)
Boy, oh boy. Hinojosa has been a revelation this month, leading the CAL in batting average, and in top of other offensive categories. One of the revelation has been so good offensively and there has not been a hotter hitter than him this month. There has been limited video on him this season other than MiLB.tv which makes us really wonder what's his secret for this hot streak. That said, he needs more than a month of hot swinging before he becomes a serious contention in the top 20 list. He's in for the top 35 that's for sure.
What to conclude:
- The Giant prospects need to learn better basestealing.
- FIP is the better way of telling the story than ERA and it is.
- A lot of movement in the middle to bottom half, not so much up in top.
It's not that organized but I hope that you enjoyed this stock report!