Results tagged ‘ Milwaukee Brewers ’

Watching Jean Segura

Tonight, I’m getting the chance to step out of my normal environment and cover a big league game. I’m filling in, covering the Brewers tonight here at PNC Park. One of the best things about my job is getting to see the guys I’ve written about as prospects excel at this level.

Jean Segura was a prospect for a while with the Angels, even if he didn’t enter national consciousness until he was sent to Milwaukee as the key to the Zack Greinke deal. He was brought up last year and kept his head above water, impressive considering his age and that he was jumped from Double-A. This year? Well, this year he’s the talk of the early part of the season, isn’t he (he’s gone 2-for-3 thus far tonight to accentuate the point).

It made me wonder what we had written about him in the past. We started Prospect Watch in 2011, when we only did Top 10 per organization (instead of our more robust 20 now). That year, Segura was the No. 2 prospect on the Angels’ Top 10. Here’s what we had on him at the time:

Segura can do just about everything on the baseball field. In his first full season, Segura was a Class A Midwest League All-Star, hitting for average, showing some extra-base pop, and stealing 50 bases. He’s got enough arm for short, and the Angels are trying him over there with Class A Advanced Inland Empire this season, though hamstring issues have hampered his development.
He had played mostly second base in the early part of his career, but it wasn’t because he didn’t have the arm for it. I remember that 2011 season, when the goal was to have him play short all year, but that hamstring issue kept him from seeing too much of the field. Guess he’s made up for that, huh?
In that 2010 season, Segura hit .313/.365/.464 in the Midwest League, finishing with 50 steals and 46 extra-base hits. It looks like that was a harbinger of things to come. People who weren’t paying attention back then, or didn’t click on that link above may wonder: “Who could have possibly been a better prospect in the Angels’ system then?”
That, of course, would be none other than Mike Trout. Trout and Segura were teammates on that 2010 Cedar Rapids club (not fair, right?). Trout got promoted after 80 games, but left his mark: .362/.454/.526 with 45 steals. He was the leadoff hitter while there, with Segura largely hitting third. When Trout was promoted, Segura took over in the leadoff spot and he seemed to like it as well. He hit .353/.402/.563 in 54 games as the Kernals’ leadoff man.
Perhaps it’s something Trout and Segura can discuss if they meet up in New York for this year’s All-Star Game.

Beyond the Top 100

After any Top 100 prospects list comes out, there’s going to be outrage, disbelief, dismay (there’s also some triumph, jubilation, celebration, but that doesn’t fit into the subject of today’s post). The list gets pored over and complaints about snubs come pouring in. You thought people were upset that Ben Affleck didn’t get a Best Director nod for “Argo”? You should talk to Astros fans about Delino DeShields Jr. Sheesh.

So, I thought it a good idea to throw out a Nos. 101-110 list. Yes, this could open a pandora’s box if guys aren’t on that list who you think should’ve been on the Top 100 to begin with. But I can deal with that. I’m happy to keep the conversation going. And keep in mind, the team Top 20s start rolling out on Monday, so there’ll be more fuel for the fire soon enough. Keep in mind, this next 10 isn’t a guaranteed list of who’ll be the first to move in when guys graduate as 2013 gets started, but clearly some names will come from this list onto the top 100 during the season. No time for expanding on this list, so here it is:

101. Dan Straily, RHP, A’s

102. Delino DeShields Jr., 2B, Astros

103. Luis Heredia, RHP, Pirates

104. Daniel Corcino, RHP, Reds

105. Brett Jackson, OF, Cubs

106. Marcell Ozuna, OF, Marlins

107. Michael Choice, OF, A’s

108. Tyler Thornburg, RHP, Brewers

109. Corey Seager, 3B/SS, Dodgers

110. Arodys Vizcaino, RHP, Cubs

AFL Report: Angels

Today’s report is on the Los Angeles Angels and how Kaleb Cowart (No. 1 on the Angels’ Top 20) and Bobby Cassevah have taken very different paths to be in the same place in Arizona.

The video report below focuses on Cowart, Travis Witherspoon and Randal Grichuk, all in that Top 20.

And Wednesday’s Star of the Day is…

Someone from the Phoenix Desert Dogs, who absolutely pounded the Surprise Saguaros, 15-1. Honestly, I thought going for the two-point conversion after their second touchdown was a bit much… The Dogs, as I like to call ‘em, had two players with four hits. Brock Kjeldgaard of the Brewers went 4-for-6 with a pair of ribbies. But Tim Beckham of the Rays outdid him just a bit. The former No. 1 overall pick went 4-for-5 with a double, triple and four RBIs. Beckham has been working on his play at second base while making up for lost time and trying to restore his prospect status following a 50-game suspension this year.

AFL Reports: Hearing from the Rangers, Blue Jays and Rockies

Happy Monday everyone. Just wanted to catch everyone up on the team reports and accompanying video:

    • Toronto Blue Jays, with a focus on Sam Dyson (Video focuses on Jake Marisnick, Deck McGuire and Kevin Pillar)
  • Colorado Rockies, with a focus on Kent Matthes (Video focuses on Matthes, Corey Dickerson and Isaiah Froneberger)

And we have 2 Stars of the Day to hand out, for Friday and Saturday. First, Friday:

While the  Marlins’ Kyle Jensen gets a tip of the cap for his 4-for-5 day at the plate for Phoenix (to go along with 3 RBIs), B3 has to go with another pitcher as Friday’s Star of the Day. Any 1-0 game in the AFL stands out and while Indians LHP T.J. House didn’t figure into the decision of Scottsdale’s win by that score, he certainly did his part. House went five hitless innings for the Scorpions, walking three and striking out four. He’s now given up one run on three hits over eight innings in the AFL, following a season that saw him finish third in the organization in strikeouts and fourth in WHIP, BAA and wins.

And now, from Saturday:

The scores from Saturday look much more like the Fall League we’ve all been used to over the years — one game 16-10, another 12-11. Kudos to the aforementioned Sardinas for homering and driving in four runs. But Saturday’s Star is awarded to Josh Prince of the Brewers. Prince, a former shortstop who made the transition to the outfield during the regular season, did what a leadoff man is supposed to for the Phoenix Desert Dogs. He went 3-for-3 with two walks, getting on base all five times he came to the plate. He scored two runs and drove in three, walking and scoring the winning run in the bottom of the ninth. He also fell a home run short of the cycle. The only downside for the speedster who his hitting .433 in the AFL thus far is that he got caught stealing twice (once via pickoff).

 

AFL Star of the Day, Vol. 4 and 5

Hey all –

We’ll cover two days with one post, as long as there aren’t any objections.

First, for Friday’s action:

I’m declaring it a draw, an all-UConn day. There was shortstop Nick Ahmed of the Braves. The 2011 second round pick out of UConn went 3-for-3 with a double, two runs scored and four RBIs. He’s gone 5-for-9 in two AFL games to date after a solid first full season in the Carolina League that saw him steal 40 bases.

Then there’s the Astros’ George Springer. A 2011 first-round pick (No. 11 overall) also drove in four runs with a homer and a triple, going 2-for-3 with three runs scored. Springer was  a California League All-Star, putting up some big numbers, albeit in Lancaster (22 HR, 28 SB, .557 SLG). He earned a promotion up to Double-A, where he struggled a bit.

Ahmed, in case you were curious, is No. 10 on the Braves’ Top 20 Prospects list. Springer is No. 3 on the Astros’ Top 20 and No. 48 overall.

Now on to Saturday’s action:

 

It’s tempting to go with Mike Zunino of the Mariners. After all, how often does a catcher hit two triples in one game. But the real Start of the Day has to be Brock Kjeldgaard of the Brewers. The outfielder hit two homers and drove in three runs.  Kjeldgaard clearly has some pop — he hit 24 homers in 2011 — but took a step back in 2012. Could he be righting the ship in Arizona? He’s 4-for-7 with three homers and 4 RBIs in two games.

 

OMG: Milwaukee Brewers

As I sit in the press box at George M. Steinbrenner Field, waiting dutifully for C.C. Sabathia’s simulated game to start, I thought I’d bring you the Milwaukee Brewers’ OMG (One More Guy). First, here’s their Top 10 list.

And now, their OMG:

dykstra.jpgCutter Dykstra, 3B: The Brewers took Lenny’s kid in the second round of the 2008 Draft out of the California high school ranks. His summer debut was fine, as he hit .271/.374/.412 in the rookie-level Arizona and Pioneer Leagues.

In 2009, he stumbled a bit, with a .659 OPS in 90 games between Helena (Pioneer League) and full-season Wisconsin. Consider then, 2010, as his coming out party. Dykstra finished second in the organization with his .312 batting average. He also had a .416 on-base percentage while his 27 steals placed him fourth in the system. He got better as the season in the Midwest League wore on, too, hitting .329 with a .443 OBP and 19 steals in the second half of the season. He’s looking more and more like a sparkplug, top-of-the-order type.

The big question is where he’s going to play defensively. In 2008 and 2009, he played a lot of outfield, though when he was back with Helena in 2009, he played second base every day. Last year, he was a third baseman. He doesn’t really profile for the hot corner, unless you’re using Chone Figgins as a role model. A move up to the Florida State League will be interesting to watch for the 21-year-old.

OMG: Kansas City Royals

With six players in the Top 50 and a few others who’d be in most Top 100s, it would be understandable if there weren’t many more Royals prospects to talk about after their Top 10 (now up and running on mlb.com).

But there are. Plenty. There are a number of directions you could go in with this OMG (One More Guy), but I’ll stay on the mound with a guy who’s new to the organization…

Jeremy Jeffress, RHP: We all know about his history, so we don’t have to go there again.jeffress.jpg From all reports, he’s straightened himself out and the Royals did a ton of background work to make sure his makeup wouldn’t be a problem once he joined the Royals. Once they determined they were OK with where he was in his life, they were thrilled to have him come to them as part of that Zack Greinke deal.

Pitching-wise, there’s a lot to like about Jeffress, especially since he’s now a full-time reliever. He’s always had the plus fastball, but that’s even better now that he’s only pitching in short stints. He was hitting triple-digits during his stint in the Arizona Fall League. He’s got an outstanding power breaking ball to go along with it and that’s really all he needs to get big-league hitters out. His stuff is that electric.

His command is still an issue, though. As well as he threw in the AFL, he walked 12 in 11 2/3 innings. That lack of control (along with a lack of a changeup) was a reason many felt he wasn’t destined to be a starter. If he can harness his stuff — and early reports this spring were that he’s refined his command — he’s got future closer written all over him. Starting this year, he could help form a dynamic 1-2 punch at the back end of the Royals bullpen, handing the ball off to All-Star Joakim Soria.

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