Blog Entry

Astros' Minor League Players of the Month: May

Posted on: June 2, 2009 1:06 am
Edited on: June 2, 2009 1:17 am
 

Hello everyone, I hope you are all having a wonderful near-summer.  I am back on the blog after a bit of a hiatus.  I recently started an internship at Syracuse University - oh yes, that's right, I'm name dropping... does this consider me an insider in matters pertaining to SU?  Anyways, as a result I have been very busy; but I would like to get back on here and start letting all of you know what I think of the current state of sports.  The MLB draft is also only a week away and I have to start getting people to view my blog in anticipation of my very ambitious MLB Mock Draft , which will have in depth analysis of all one hundred and eleven day one picks.  If you are a baseball fan, but have never paid much attention to the draft, I think you would very much enjoy keeping at least one eye on it this year, and my coverage of the draft is aimed at everyday fans who don't know as much about the scouting and player development side of the diamond.  I am also thinking about running a live blog the night of the draft, Tuesday June 9th at 6:00 PM.  I would open a blog post when I come home from work that afternoon and would run updates throughout the night, this would also act as a forum, where the comments section would be devoted to discussion and questions.  If you are interested in this, please leave a comment below.  I will be mentioning this as I post new blogs throughout the week - please let me know if this is something that would interest you!  Anyways, in the past I have failed to live up to promises on this blog, I think this is because I took on big projects - such as the top 15 prospects series -  which were impossible to finish.  Now I will be focusing on smaller posts on a variety of topics.  Since I mentioned the top 15 prospects series, allow me to use this time to conclude it.  I will not be finishing the top prospects series, sorry.  I do, however, have the remaining lists, and if you ask, I could release those in one post, but would provide no analysis or explanation.  Also, feel free to comment topic ideas you would like my opinion on, or ask a question you would like answered... especially if you have a question about the 2009 MLB Draft !  Anyways, without further ado, here is the second installment of the Astros’ organizational players of the month…

AAA - Round Rock Express :

Pitcher of the Month

Yorman Bazardo RHSP – I actually just changed this award, moments ago it was Bud Norris, who went 2-2 over six starts, pitching 35 and a third innings, but striking out 37 batters and allowing 35 hits in May.  His ERA was 3.06 for the month and is still only 2.75 on the year; he has struck out 62 batters in 59 innings.  Bazardo, on the other hand, went a perfect 4-0, also over six starts – one of which was a shutout; he pitched a team leading 42 and third innings.  His ERA in May was 1.49 and he allowed only 26 hits!  He struck out 28.  At first glance I was going to give the accolade to Norris, he is after all the top pitching prospect – due for a promotion – and looked to be more dominate because of the much superior strikeout rate.  However, Bazardo looked to be just as dominate allowing only 26 hits in over 42 innings.  Norris allowed more hits, 35, in less innings, 35.  Competition between these two is only good news for the Astros.  Bazardo is 24 years old, 25 in July, and from Venezuela. 

Hitter of the Month

Tommy Manzella SS – Mark Saccomanno and Brian Bogusevic were also in the mix but, surprisingly, it was Manzella who showed off the most power in May.  Bogusevic did have a noteworthy month, batting anywhere between leadoff and third in the lineup.  His average was .292 with a .371 on-base % and .409 slugging %.  He boasted eight extra bases, including two homeruns and was successful on all five of his steal attempts.  Manzella hit .339 with a .397 on-base % and a .492 slugging %.  He hit fourteen extra base hits, eleven of which were doubles. 

AA – Corpus Christi Hooks :

Pitcher of the Month

Douglas Arguello LHP – Had Chia-Jen Lo, April’s A+ pitcher of the month, been healthy after being called up, he probably would have competed for this honor.  However, without him, this was not a very intriguing decision.  He was 1-2 in four starts over 27 and two third innings.  He posted a 2.28 ERA, allowing 19 strikeouts and 27 hits. 

Hitter of the Month

Andrew Locke OF – Hmm… looks like I may have been right about James Van Ostrand, ha!  Andrew Locke was downright raking in May; no other AA hitter was even close.  He hit .327 with a .375 on-base % and .533 slugging %.  He hit five homeruns and drove in 31 RBIs, scoring 18 of his own. 

A+ - Lancaster Jet Hawks :

Pitcher of the Month

Leandro Cespedes RHP – It is my pleasure to introduce many of you to Cespedes the 22 year old Domican.  He went 1-3 in three starts, and five total appearances, posting 2.38 ERA.  In 22 and two third he allowed 22 hits and also struck out 22 batters.  As a prospect I am a little worried about Cespedes’ height, since he’s only 5’11”. 

Hitter of the Month

Jon Gaston OF - I want to so badly make this a “co” award and hand half of it to Jason Castro, but Gaston deserves it.  Castro hit for a .311 average, with a .425 on-base % and .509 slugging %.  He hit three homeruns and added another twelve doubles (seven more than he hit in April).  He also showed off his advanced approach at the plate walking nineteen times, fifteen times more than last month.  He did however; still strike out a bit too much, 22 times.  Gaston hit for an average of .365, with a .461 on-base % and .808 slugging %!  He hit nine homeruns and added nine doubles and five triples.  He stoles five bases, struck out 26 times, and walked 18 times.  Gaston also scored 30 runs. 

A- - Lexington Legends :

Pitcher of the Month

Jordan Lyles RHP – All the usual suspects were considered, that is: Lyles, Ross Seaton, Robert Bono, Kyle Greenwalt, Henry Villar and Brad Dydalewicz, however, the clear winner of this impressive group is the 2008 first supplemental round draft pick.  After capturing the April award, Seaton cooled down to an ERA of 4.44 over five starts, his yearly ERA is still only 2.44.  I am starting to get a little worried about his inability to strikeout batters, though, in 26 innings last month he struck out only nine.  Seaton’s first start in June was a CG shutout with six strikeouts.  Despite decent splits, Greenwalt finished May with a 0-4 record.  Henry Villar has become the odd man out of the Lexington rotation, but put together another solid month.  Posting a 2.01 ERA in eight appearances, including one start, he struck out 19 batters in 22 innings.  Villar has actually been better as a starter.  He has a 1.69 ERA in his three starts and a 2.00 ERA in his other eleven appearances.  Furthermore, Villar has struck out 20 batters in 10 and two thirds innings as a starter, while striking out 25 in 27 innings as a reliever.  It seems as though Villar has been unable to go deep into starts – three starts, 10.2 innings, do the math – and that’s why he’s currently a reliever, despite his success this season.  Dydalewicz doesn’t pitch enough innings to win the award.  He threw three starts in May, posting a 1.59 ERA.  However, he struck out seven batters, while also walking seven.  Robert Bono is quickly becoming a personal favorite… he’s certainly after Lyles and Seaton – I’m high on Villar – but, he’s surpassed Dydalewicz and Greenwalt.  Bono would be considered the runner up this month.  He went 2-0 in five starts posting a 2.25 ERA.  He struck out 22 batters in 28 innings, while walking only 5 .  Lyles only went 1-3 in six starts with a 2.48 ERA.  He struck out 40 batters in 36 and a third innings, and walked only six.  On a slight side note, how about Bobby Heck!  “Over-drafting” Jason Castro and Jordan Lyles in the first and supplemental round, respectively, is really starting to work out.  Stuff like that really gets me hyped for the draft… do you see a theme starting to form for the coming week?  Draft!  Draft! Draft!

Hitter of the Month

Brian Pellegrini OF – The 24 year old was sent down to low A Lexington after showing an inability to hit for average in Lancaster.  I would prefer not to give out this award to a 24 year old in low A ball, but every other position player in Lexington stinks!  Seriously, it is a very good thing they have one of the best pitching staffs in the minors.  Albert Cartwright the previous award winner, does not actually “stink”, he’s just inconveniently injured.  In 47 at-bats, Pellegrini hit for an average of .277, with a .393 on-base % and .574 slugging %.  He hit three homeruns, struck out thirteen times and walked nine times. 

P.S. – I have assigned a player to all 111 first day picks, for the MLB draft .  Tomorrow I will scan through it and probably revise the draft a little bit, then the rest of the week will be spent writing blurbs on each pick, explaining who and why.  I'm hoping for a Sunday afternoon release.   Teaser: I have gotten really into draft philosophies.  As always, let me know what you think.   Tuesday 6 PM, live MLB Draft blog chat, let me know if you're interested.  




Category: MLB
Comments

Since: Sep 27, 2006
Posted on: June 2, 2009 1:47 am
 

Astros' Minor League Players of the Month: May

That's one hell of a starting rotation we have in Lexinton. I'm looking forward to seeing those guys move on up through the system over the next few years. Castro looks to be the real deal too, although I sort of expected him to handle A-ball since he played in college. Hopefully he'll have similar success when he gets moved up. He really seems to be the complete package though; the guy can belt it, and he's willing to take a walk. Berkmanesque.

AA and AAA are still sort of depressing, but it's good to hear we've got another fairly young pitcher alongside Norris. Either way, this last draft is still shaping up nicely, especially in terms of pitching. Let's just hope the next one nets us a few position players. A couple of corner infielders and a short-stop would be a nice find to compliment Castro, Bourn, and Pence a few years from now.


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