Results tagged ‘ Mike Moustakas ’

Getting started at the Winter Meetings

The Winter Meetings here in beautiful Lake Buena Vista (that’s Orlando for most of you) are just getting going, but things are already rolling on the prospect front. It’s not often that two Top 50 type prospects get dealt in the span of an entire Winter Meetings, but we’ve got two — one confirmed, one likely soon to be — already changing hands.

The first, of course, was Casey Kelly, going from the Red Sox to the Padres in the Adrian Gonzalez deal. He was No. 28 on MLB.com’s Top 50 prospects list before the 2010 season and while his performance didn’t measure up, scouts still love his stuff. Take a look at the run-down on him and the two other good prospects (Anthony Rizzo and Reymond Fuentes) the Padres got for Gonzalez.

And while it’s not official — yet — it certainly appears likely the Brewers will send Brett Lawrie (No. 26 on that Top 50 list) to Toronto for Shuan Marcum at some point in time. His bat remains his best tool. Stay tuned for a run-down on him if/when that thing becomes official.

Much, much more to come from me as the week wears on. Whenever there’s a prospect involved in a trade, I’ll be there to provide analysis. And don’t forget the all-too exciting Rule 5 Draft preview — complete with potential picks — coming on Wednesday.

Today, I’ll get the chance to talk to Royals Mike Moustakas, who’s here to accept the Joe Bauman Award for topping the Minors in home runs in 2010. So stay tuned for that story later on.

Time to hit the ol’ lobby to see what the latest is…

PITY-POTY

For the uninitiated, that stands for: Pitcher of the Year and Player of the Year. And of course, I’m talking about in the Minor Leagues.

We’re well into the second half of the season — there’s about six weeks of the Minor League season remaining — so I thought it’d be a good idea to look at some of the potential candidates for top oveall MiLB player and pitcher. I’m going to start with 5 position player canididates, with more to come in the coming days.

Please let me know who you’re choice would be. If you have other candidates, let me know about them as well.

Player of the Year Candidates

J.P. Arencibia, C, Blue Jays: It’s been quite a bounce-back season for the 2007 first-rounder. Sure, he’s playing in Las Vegas, but it’s not nothing that he tops the Minors with 28 homers and .669 SLG. His 1.036 OPS is fifth overall, he’s hitting .316 and his 69 RBIs are good for third in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League.

Brandon Belt, 1B, Giants: If you’re not familiar with him, you
should become acquainted. A fifth-rounder taken in last year’s draft out
of the University of Texas, Belt has hit better as a pro than he did
with the Longhorns. He began his first season in the California League,
but got promoted to Double-A 14 games ago. He’s raked throughout and his
.383 average and 1.129 OPS lead the Minors. He’s first with a .483 OBP
and third with his .645 SLG.

Paul Goldschmidt, 1B, Diamondbacks: Yes, he’s 22 and he’s been playing in the hitter-friendly California League. But he’s tied for the Minor-League lead with 56 extra-base hits, tied for second with 26 homers, fifth with 73 RBIs while hitting .312 and slugging .605

Devin Mesoraco, C, Reds: Talk about a breakout. The 2007 first-rounder has split the year between the Class A advanced Carolina League and Double-A Southern League, not exactly known as hitting-friendly circuits. Neverthleless, the 22-year-old Mesoraco has hit a combined .319/.389/.631 in 80 games. His 1.021 OPS is good for eighth overall. He’s got 20 homers and 53 RBIs. And he’s thrown out 42 percent of would-be base stealers. Not a bad combination of skills.

Mike Moustakas, 3B, Royals: The Futures Gamer and 2007 first-rounder just got bumped up to Triple-A and for good reason. He’s hitting .333 and his 1.050 OPS is third best in the Minors. He’s second in SLG (.652), fourth in RBIs (76) and has 21 homers. 

More to come…

AFL Day 3: Mous on the loose

Before we get to the Star of the Day, some more on the player interactivity front.

We’re starting to get players up and running on Twitter. So far, two have taken the plunge, so he gets a special shout out:

Dodgers OF Trayvon Robinson can be followed @TRobinsonAFL.
Mariners OF Joe Dunivan can be followed @JDuniganAFL

Go and give them a follow, would you?

Now, on to our Stars of the Day

Hitter

Mike Moustakas, 3B, Surprise (Royals): The Rafters are now 3-0 thanks to their 18 hits onmoustakas.jpg
Thursday. Moustakas, the Royals top pick from 2007, went 3-for-5 with a
homer, two doubles and 7 RBIs. That’s a week for some people. Honorable
mention goes to Yankees prospect Brandon Laird (Gerald’s brother). He
went 5-for-5 in this game and is now 9-for-11 in two AFL contests.

Pitcher

gutierrez.jpgDanny Gutierrez, RHP, Surprise (Rangers): While that win over Mesa may have been more about offense (12-5), Gutierrez’s start should not be overlooked.While the Rafters were getting out to a 3-0 lead, Gutierrez was putting up zeroes over three innings. And that’s not just in runs. The right-hander didn’t allow a hit during his outing, walking two and striking out two.

Evidently, there’s some kid named Strasburg pitching tonight. Haven’t heard much about him, though.

Scouting the Top 50: 14-10

You guys ready for another set? OK, here it goes…

14. Matt LaPorta, OF, Indians
laporta_matt.jpgSeen: May (Southern League) and August (Team USA)

Middle of the lineup type, run-producing bat. Plus bat speed, plus lift for power. Big swing, can drive ball to all fields. Kills mistakes. Great fastball hitter, trouble with sliders away, but adjustments will come in future. Good corner bat in bigs. Decent in outfield, comfortable, catches what speed lets him get to. Chance to become reliable outfielder. Power bat will carry game.

13. Brett Anderson, LHP, A’s
brett_anderson.jpgSeen: August (Team USA)

Fastball:  88-92 mph
Curveball: 72-73 mph
Slider: 80-83 mph
Changeup: 79-83 mph

Lefty with feel for four pitches. Very composed on mound. Good competitor, even without best stuff. Tail and sink on fastball in and out, gets in on hands of hitters. Slider is out pitch, can back foot for right-handed hitters. Sink on changeup with deception. Curve has good bite and location when locked in, though that was lacking in this particular outing. Good middle of the rotation type in future.

12. Andrew McCutchen, OF, Pirates
andrew_mccutchen.jpgSeen: July (International League)

Excellent bat speed. Surprising ability to generate power. Uses speed to his advantage. Knows how to steal a base and is a good bunter. Will chase pitches, inconsistent with balance and plate discipline. Good range in outfield, reads balls well. Projects as quality every-day outfielder at Major-League level.

11. Mike Moustakas, 3B, Royals
mike_moustakas.jpgSeen: April (Midwest League)

Big bat with a big future. Was playing shortstop at time — which didn’t work — now moved to third. Plus arm to handle infield or outfield corner. Bat will carry at any position. Quick bat speed, plate coverage, power. Plus producer, a middle of the order type when it all clicks. Struggled to adjust at this time, but made adjustments later in season.

10. Colby Rasmus, OF, Cardinals
colby_rasmus.jpgSeen: July (Pacific Coast League)

Just off of disabled list at this time, so rust was apparent. Carries himself like a player. Quiet approach, easy actions. Uses whole field at plate. Knows how to bunt. Good instincts on basepaths, can steal a base. Good jumps and routes in center field. Has ability to become solid Major League outfielder.
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