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Around the Farm: April 7, 2013

Around the Farm: April 7, 2013
April 8, 2013
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Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Indians prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.

Joey Wendle: DH, Carolina Mudcats: 2-for-3, 2 R, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1 K:

Mr. Wendle’s big offensive question marks are both his power potential and his ability to continue to hit as he starts to advance through the upper levels of the system to face off against the best pitching the minors has to offer. The Carolina league has certainly held that type of prestige in the past, so this really could bode well for what I would consider a bit of an early draft-pick surprise in the middle infielder (and apparently, a 3B too).

Tyler Holt: CF, Akron Aeros: 2-for-3, 3 R, 2 BB, 1 K:

This is the Tyler Holt that the Indians were hoping for when they drafted him a few years back. When he’s at the top of the order and getting on base, he can create utter havoc. When you add the fact that Jose Ramirez, Chun Chen and Jesus Aguilar all hit after him, you create a potential nightmare for opposing pitchers. Holt was 0-for-8 over his last two games heading into Sunday afternoon, so this is a good sign for the 2010 Tenth Round pick.

Jose Ramirez: SS, Akron Aeros: 3-for-4, 4 R, 1 BB:

Every time I talk about this kid, I think hyperbole. Then I look at the numbers and realize that the only thing holding him back is, well, himself. Ramirez has hit and hit well at every level the Indians have thrown at him so far. He’s also burst on the prospect scene and has seemingly come straight outta nowere. Ramirez has hit safely in all four games, and has multi-hit games in the first, second and fourth games. Today, he added four runs to his mix of statistics.

Chun-Hsiu Chen: DH, Akron Aeros: 2-for-4, 3 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 BB:

Chen seems to be a lost bat in the system right now, but with a couple more performances like this to start the year, he won’t be able to hide anywhere. The question about his bat is always a power issue. Can he find his power this season, or was today’s game a fluke? Chen also added a stolen base to his stat-line.

Jesus Aguilar: 1B, Akron Aeros: 3-for-4, 2 R, 5 RBI:

You really can’t forget about the big first baseman as a future major league power source with the Cleveland Indians. He really seems to be developing into a solid all-around offensive player, and with his size, if he keeps making contact, he’s going to be absolutely devastating.  Sunday’s game was his first multi-hit game of the year, and his third straight game with a hit for the Aeros. The top of the order went a combined 10-for-15, with 12 runs and five RBI for the Aeros.

  • Jeremy Hermida: RF, Columbus: 2-for-4: The former major leaguer is trying to get noticed quickly in the organization in the early going by putting on an offensive clinic. He has hits in his first four ballgames, and has back-to-back-to-back two-hit games, giving him a .471/1.000/1.471 slash-line so far.
  • Yan Gomes: C, Columbus: 1-for-4, 1 2B: Gomes has flashed a solid bat for the Indians during and since spring training, but his throwing error in the fifth gave the Indians a 2-0 lead, which proved to be the back-breaker in a 3-0 shutout. Gomes needs to solidify his defense to ever be taken seriously at the big league level.
  • Fernando Nieve: SP, Columbus: 6 IP, 3 H, 2 R/1 ER, 2 BB, 7 K, 1 HR: Nieve is the unsung hero in the Clippers’ rotation. With all of the attention focused on guys like Trevor Bauer and Daisuke Matsuzaka, Nieve may turn out to be a bit of a sleeper candidate for spot duty as the year progresses. One start does not make a decision, but it certainly is a place to start.
  • Matt Capps: RP, Columbus: 1 IP, 2 H, 1 K: Capps is pitching with his eyes directly on returning to the big leagues. He’s one to watch, and even though this appearance wasn’t exactly eye-opening, he should get opportunities to prove his worth.
  • Paolo Espino: SP, Akron: 4 IP, 5 H, 2 R/ER, 5 K: Espino, who can’t seem to make the last push to get to the big leagues in any capacity, was a bit shaky in his first start of the 2013 season. I suspect that by the time it’s all said and done, he’ll be winning games again, but the jury is out with regards to whether or not he is a true prospect, or ultimately, just another pretty good minor league arm.
  • Francisco Lindor: SS, Carolina: 2-for-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 SB: It’s early in the 2013 season, but there’s been a bit of buzz with regards to Lindor and his major league potential. The area that needs the most work is his offense, and he’s flashed signs of a break-out year in both Spring Training and in the early…EARLY stages of 2013’s regular season. He has a three-game hit streak, and has a .545/.583/.818 slash line so far this year. Like I said, it’s early, but it sure is interesting.
  • Tony Wolters: 2B, Carolina: 0-for-4, 3 K: Wolters started off the 2012 season struggling with the bat. Many questioned whether or not he belonged with the Mudcats after skipping Lake County. Fast forward to this year, and Wolters is 0-for-10 this season, and he hasn’t even started to re-learn the position.
  • Eric Haase: C, Lake County: 2-for-4: There are several IBI writers that are extremely high on Haase, and for good reason. He really has ability, and in a system that seems to not have a bevy of catching prospects, Haase provides the Tribe with that type of depth move that can solidify a pitching staff.
  • Dorssys Paulino: SS, Lake County: 0-for-4, 2 K: Paulino’s oh-fer gives him a .188 average on the season, which I’m sure he’s not used to. It will be interesting to see if this will spur him on to hit, or frustrate him into an actual slump.
  • Felix Sterling: RP, Lake County: 1 2/3 IP, 2 H, 1 R/ER, 2 K: Sterling has an electric arm, and the Indians will really be focused this season on trying to get some consistency out of him. This season, it will be out of the bullpen.

Jim is currently the senior editor and Columnist, as well as  the host of IBI's weekly online radio shows, Smoke Signals and Cleveland Sports Insiders. You can follow Jim on Twitter @Jim_IBI, or contact him via e-mail at jpete@indiansprospectinsider.com.

User Comments

Daingean
April 8, 2013 - 1:31 PM EDT
Phelps is on the 7 day DL....not sure why but noted in the Transactions blog.
Matthew
April 8, 2013 - 10:18 AM EDT
Do we know why Cord Phelps has yet to play for the Clippers? I assume it's not a roster crunch issue, as the comments from ST would seem that the org had him ahead of Rohlinger and Hernandez, so I assume it's an injury issue.

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