Could Dalton Pompey Be A Difference Maker In 2014?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The 2011 11th round pick came to life in the minors this season, reaching Triple-A and seeing time across three levels. He combined to hit .310 with 9 HR and 42 SB, showing that he could potentially develop into a four or five category contributor.

Of course, the average was buoyed by a .366 BABIP and there are questions about his strikeout numbers. While his overall strikeout rate this season was 17.0%, he’s at 19.3% for his minor league career. Also, just look at the split by level this season:

  • Single-A – 17.7%
  • Double-A – 14.8%
  • Triple-A – 20.0%

The Triple-A mark was from an incredibly small sample size (50 PA), but it’s still noteworthy when coupled with his career mark. It’s hard to bank on him hitting for an elevated average, even with a consistently good eye at the plate (12.0% walk rate for his career). It becomes increasingly concerning when you factor in his career 13.9% line drive rate (15.5% in 2014). Read more

Buy ‘Em or Deny ‘Em: Is Carlos Carrasco For Real?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

There was a time when Carlos Carrasco was a highly regarded prospect.  Then there was a time that he was nothing more than an afterthought with little potential upside.  Now?  We appear to have come full circle, because he’s shaping up as a solid option with the chance that he is a difference maker down the stretch.

While he’s spent time both as a starter and reliever this season, that doesn’t change the fact that he’s been impressive with a 3.01 ERA and 1.00 WHIP.  The underlying metrics scream of success, with an 8.63 K/9, 2.11 BB/9 and 53.1% groundball rate.  Before we simply say that those numbers are courtesy of his time spent in the bullpen, just look at the split:

  • Starter – 9.06 K/9, 2.31 BB/9, 48.8% groundball rate
  • Reliever – 8.16 K/9, 1.88 BB/9, 57.6% groundball rate

Read more

10 Stories From 09/01/2014 Box Scores: Dilson Herrera Erupts, Denard Span Muscles Up & More

by Ray Kuhn

The promotion of top prospects was happening all around the game yesterday, from Joc Pederson to Maikel Franco to Daniel Norris.  While they didn’t necessarily get their opportunity yet, let’s take a look at what did happen on the field that we need to know about:

 

1) Dilson Herrera enjoys a big day at the plate…
A day after getting his first major league RBI, Dilson Herrera hit his first major league home run Monday afternoon. It looks like Daniel Murphy will be out for the rest of the season and the Mets appear to be committed to giving Herrera a chance at second base to see what he can do. The rookie went 2-4 with three RBI’s against the Marlins and that included Herrera’s first career home run. After four games his average sits at .308 and between High-A and AA this season in the minor leagues Herrera hit .323 in 2014 with 13 home runs and 71 RBI’s. Herrera is certainly worth a look in deeper leagues as he could provide middle infield help as more and more veterans get shut down for the season. Read more

Closer In Waiting Power Rankings (September 1, 2014): Who Is The Next Source Of Saves?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Are you someone constantly on the lookout for the next potential closer? That’s what we are trying to pinpoint here, with our Top 5 Closer In Waiting Power Rankings. These rankings look at the pitchers who appear capable of taking over their team’s respective closing duties (though in some cases, will need some help to get there). Keep in mind, if a pitcher is currently part of a committee they will not be included in these rankings despite not currently “holding” the job outright.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at how things stand (all stats are through Saturday):

 

1) Kevin Quackenbush – San Diego Padres (4)
Current Closer – Joaquin Benoit

Quackenbush is actually going to function as the Padres’ closer for the next few days, as Benoit is once again having shoulder issues.  If he pitches well, could he simply claim the job as his own?  This very easily can be viewed as a trial run, with Benoit potentially on his way out in the offseason, and Quackenbush has the upside of being the closer for 2015 and beyond. Read more

Waiver Worthy: Three Potential Non-Prospect September Callups To Consider

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

It’s easy to overlook there players, since they aren’t “prospects” and we’ve seen them before.  However, they easily could be difference makers down the stretch:

 

Josmil Pinto – Catcher – Minnesota Twins
There was a lot of hype surrounding Pinto entering the season, especially after he assumed a bigger role in 2013 (83 PA). However, a relatively flat start to the season (.222 with 7 HR in 158 PA) and questions about his defense sent him back to Triple-A. He’s slashed .279/.378/.456 while there, and also continued to show a good eye at the plate (since 2011 he owns a 16.0% strikeout rate vs. 10.4% walk rate in the minors).

The Twins did sign Kurt Suzuki to an extension, so that would appear to block Pinto for the next few seasons (who would’ve thought that). It’s very possible, however, that the Twins bring him back and attempt to showcase him down the stretch. Catchers who can hit are a commodity, so it would make sense. Read more

10 Stories From 08/31/2014 Box Scores: Is Domonic Brown Worth Grabbing, Should We Drop Scott Kazmir & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

With Jay Bruce on the bench, Chris Heisey played the unlikely role of hero, going 2-4 with 2 HR, 3 RBI and 2 R.  Matt Holliday homered again, going 3-4 with 1 HR, 4 RBI and 2 R (3 HR and 9 RBI over the past two games).  However Alex Wood stole the show, tossing 8.0 shutout innings allowing 5 H and 0 BB, striking out 12, to defeat the Marlins.  Let’s take a look at all the other stories coming out of yesterday’s games that we need to know about:

 

1) Bryce Harper finally erupts, but does it matter…
He went 3-4 with 2 HR, 2 RBI and 2 R, with both long balls coming against Hisashi Iwakuma (6.0 IP, 3 ER, 5 H, 0 BB, 6 K, W).  It’s actually the second time he’s had 3 H in his past 3 games, with 3 HR and 3 RBI over that span.  It’s hard to argue that it hasn’t been a disappointing season, at .268 with 10 HR and 1 SB over 269 AB.  That said, the strikeouts are up (28.1% entering the day), and he’s been even worse in the second half (29.2%).  That has never been the case before, but it’s hard to expect much better for the remainder of the season.  He’s also been incredibly lucky, with a .351 BABIP despite a 19.9% line drive rate.  In other words, while we wouldn’t alter our long-term outlook, there’s a lot of reason for skepticism for the remainder of ’14. Read more