Standout Sprouts Pulse is a recap of what I consider to be the top performances in the minors from the previous day. These are broken out into two groups: hitters and pitchers and players are listed within those groups by the organization to which they belong. At least one player will be included from each league in AAA on down through the Pioneer and Appalachian. Where possible I will select both a hitter and pitcher for each league, but at times will only pick one or the other. From the 14-28 players that make this list each day, I will pick an overall hitter and pitcher of the day and (time permitting) will write a few paragraphs on them.
BAL – RF Ronnie Welty, Bowie (AA): 2-4, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R
CWS – 1B Andy Wilkins, Birmingham (AA): 4-5, 2 2B, 2 RBI, R
KC – SS Irving Falu, Omaha (AAA): 4-4, 3 2B, 2 RBI, 3 R, 2 BB
At 29-years of age, Irving Falu is far from a prospect but he proved he could handle major league pitching in a brief 15-game stint with the Royals this season. He hit 0.321/.333/.434 while playing 2B, 3B and SS for Kansas City with most of his playing time coming during the month of May. He’s spent the last four seasons steadily improving at Triple-A and is sporting a excellent 0.326/.374/.466 slash line so far in 2012.
The Royals have a long track record of ignoring and denying deserving players a look at the big league level. As a fan that has been a source of great frustration for me since they never have anything to lose. Except more games of course, and they obviously have done plenty of that on their own. Falu isn’t going to materialize into an every day player but he can be an offensive minded bench player capable of playing all over the infield and the Royals have squandered him as an asset by wasting time on slugs like Yuniesky Betancourt.
He’s been in the organization since he was drafted in the 21st round of the 2003 draft, but for his sake I hope he gets a chance with a different team in the coming years. He can play in the major leagues, unfortunately Dayton Moore and company refuse to acknowledge that fact.
LAA – RF Chevy Clarke, Orem (Rk): 2-3, 2B, 3 R, 2 BB, SB
PIT – DH Dallas McPherson, Indianapolis (AAA): 2-3, 2B, HR, 3 RBI, R, 2 BB
SD – 1B Tommy Medica, Lake Elsinore (A+): 2-5, 2B, HR, 2 RBI, 2 R
SEA – 2B Daniel Paolini, Clinton (A): 3-4, 2 2B, HR, 3 RBI, 2 R
STL – LF Mike O’Neill, Springfield (AA): 4-5, 2B, RBI, R
TEX – LF Christopher Grayson, Myrtle Beach (A+): 3-3, 2 2B, R, BB, SB
TOR – 3B Matthew Dean, Bluefield (Rk): 2-3, 2B, 3B, RBI, R, BB
WAS – LF Estarlin Martinez, Auburn (A-): 2-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI, R
BOS – RHP Nelson Figueroa, Pawtucket (BOS): 7.1 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 SO
HOU – RHP Ross Seaton, Corpus Christi (AA): 7.0 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 SO
The Astros landed Seaton in the third round of the 2008 draft and signed him to a $700,000 bonus. His statistical track record has been less than impressive but Houston hasn’t done him any favors by pushing him aggressively through their system. Like most talented young pitchers he has an occasional outing that stands out, but Seaton mixes in plenty of clunkers along the way as well. On July 6th he threw 8.1 innings of shutout ball and followed that up with a respectable 7.0 inning, 2 run effort. Then he went threw a four start stretch where he allowed 32 hits and 20 runs in 19.1 innings before turning in another 7.0 inning, 2 run effort on August 22nd. His performance on Monday comes on the heels of that giving him two strong starts in a row, but whether he can make that the foundation of an extended run of success is entirely up in the air.
Seaton has an excellent fastball, and has kept his BB/9 under 2.8 at each stop going back to his 2009 season with Lexington (A). He’s obviously talented but desperately needs to find and harness a 3rd offering to avoid being relegated to a relief role.
KC – RHP Tyler Mack, Burlington (Rk): 8.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 7 SO
LAA – RHP Andrew Smith, Inland Empire (A+): 7.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 6 SO
MIL – RHP Brian Baker, Nashville (AAA): 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 SO
PHI – RHP Trevor May, Reading (AA): 8.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 SO
PHI – RHP Josh Warner, Williamsport (A-): 6.0 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 SO
TB – RHP Matt Buschmann, Montgomery (AA): 8.0 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 SO
TEX – RHP C.J. Edwards, Spokane (A-): 5.0 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 7 SO
*All 8/27 games on the Florida State League schedule were cancelled.
*No games on the South Atlantic League schedule for Monday.