Prospect Trends — Week Ending 5/8
Jameson Taillon started showing why he’s gotten the hype, but otherwise it wasn’t a great week for the Pirates’ farm system. Few of the more significant pitching prospects are pitching well and not many hitters are doing much, either.
Alex Presley, OF (AAA): International League pitchers had their hands full with Presley, who went 13-for-24 (.542) on the week, with a double, triple and HR. On the year, he’s hitting 377/421/561, and Neal Huntington is starting to get questions about what Presley has to do to get a callup.
Jordy Mercer, SS (AA): After a bad April, Mercer started the long climb back to respectability by going 10-for-24 (.417) with three doubles. He’s now hitting 229/293/400 overall. Not good, but a far cry from the 154/233/346 line he posted in April.
Jarek Cunningham, 2B (A+): Cunningham continued to pound out extra-base hits, going 8-for-23 (.348) with a double, two triples and a HR. He did, however, fan six times while walking only once. On the season he’s slugging .672 and averaging one extra-base hit every five ABs.
Jeff Inman, RHP (A+): Since being activated early in the season, Inman has pitched well. In his latest start, he allowed just one run on two hits and two walks over five innings, leaving his ERA at 1.64. He only fanned two and on the year has fanned just eight in 22 IP, but it’s encouraging that he’s been able to stay healthy and pitch effectively after missing all of last year, especially since he’s pitching at a high level for a player with essentially no prior pro experience.
Kawika Emsley-Pai, C (A): After starting the season as the backup catcher, Emsley-Pai may be hitting himself into more playing time, especially with Elias Diaz struggling mightily. In three games during the week, he went 5-for-10 (.500) with three doubles, leaving him at 412/487/559 on the season. He’s also cut down 44% of opposing base stealers.
Jameson Taillon, RHP (A): In his two starts, Taillon allowed just one run on five hits in nine innings. He fanned eleven and walked nobody. So far, so good.
Brooks Pounders, RHP (A): For some reason, Pounders has pitched sparingly. He’s pitching mainly in two-inning stints, sometimes with a week in between. In his only outing this past week, he allowed just one hit and one walk over three shutout innings, with four Ks. On the season he’s allowed just eleven hits and two walks in fifteen innings, while fanning 22.
IS THIS GOOD OR BAD?
Mel Rojas, Jr., OF (A): After struggling badly in the early going, Rojas has his BA up to .283 following an 8-for-20 (.400) week. The problem is, on the year he has just three extra-base hits, all doubles, and four walks to go with 26 strikeouts, leaving him with an OPS of just .624. He’s also been thrown out in six of eleven steal attempts.
Gorkys Hernandez, OF (AAA): Hernandez started the season well, but after a 3-for-16 (.188) week, he’s now hitting 226/320/386 overall. He’s joined the raft of position prospects at Indianapolis who are soon going to join the non-prospect ranks if they don’t start hitting.
Brock Holt, IF (AA): Holt followed a strong week with a 2-for-22 slump, with no walks or extra-base hits and five strikeouts. That cost him 45 points off his BA.
Evan Chambers, OF (A+): Chambers continues to struggle at the high A level. For the week he went 3-for-18 (.167) with no walks and seven strikeouts. Four of those whiffs came in one game. He has yet to go deep this season and is fanning in over a quarter of his ABs.
Quinton Miller, RHP (A+): Miller’s struggles continued as he got bombed in his only start. He allowed ten hits and nine runs, eight of them earned, in five innings. His ERA for the year stands at 9.99.
Trent Stevenson, RHP (A): Stevenson struggled in his two appearances, allowing nine hits in four innings. On the good side, he didn’t walk anybody and has allowed only one walk all year. Opponents, though, are hitting .333 against him.