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News » Minor league report: McDonald's on fire

Minor league report: McDonald's on fire

Minor league report: McDonald's on fire

Hot and Hotheaded?

There are many turnarounds going on, most of them good. One of the more closely watched ones is taking place at High Desert, where Carlos Triunfel has returned after an extended stay at extended spring training where he was sent to "clear his head."


Nolan Reimold, on the other hand, is changing the very way he hits, and it's been fun to follow in the boxscores.

Carlos Triunfel, SS, Mariners — Triunfel's 11-for-21 in his last five games at High-A High Desert since returning from 10 days at extended spring training for violating team rules. His on-field performance was not the issue - he's hitting .463 over his last 10 games. It remains to be seen if the behavior issues were a one-time thing or if they're a chronic problem. There's conflicting information out there about his personality. One of the most respected sources that covers prospects says his makeup is actually superior to that of most players his age. Others consider him a risk factor because of his behavior.

Nolan Reimold, OF, Orioles — Reimold went 2-for-4 Monday for Double-A Bowie. He's completely turned his year around in May, during which he's hitting .323/.422/.591 with a 9:16 K:BB. On the year, he's gotten up to .277/.373/.468 after a horrendous start and has transformed himself into a patient hitter with a 26:29 K:BB. Oddly, the right-handed hitting Reimold's hitting only .220 against righties, but that's undoubtedly a sample-size issue.

James McDonald, P, Dodgers — McDonald might be in the process of turning his year around at Double-A Jacksonville. Over his last four starts, he has a 23:8 K:BB and 2.86 ERA. His year-to-date numbers have been borderline, so this recent stretch is encouraging. He has a .262 BAA and has given up five home runs over 49 1/3 innings, but he's had terrible numbers with men on base, so he'll have to watch that. In addition, his GO:AO is at 0.88, and this could cause him some problems down the road. It's not as though the Dodgers won't promote young pitchers quickly, so he has a legitimate shot at seeing some MLB innings this year.

Jake Arrieta, P, Orioles — Arrieta gave up three hits in eight shutout innings Wednesday for High-A Frederick. He struck out five and walked two and has a BAA of .137. He's absolutely on fire, with a 64:27 K:BB over 59 2/3 innings, over which he's yielded just one home run and has given up five earned runs over his last 53 innings. He should be moving up very fast and very soon.

Casey Fossum, P, Tigers — Fossum struck out 11, gave up just two hits and walked two over seven innings on Saturday for Triple-A Toledo. The Tigers have converted him back to starting after having him go five games in relief in April. Over his three starts, he's given up eight hits and four walks over 20 innings, good for a .125 BAA. In addition, he's posted a 25:4 K:BB. Don't be surprised if he surfaces at Detroit sometime soon.

Lou Marson, C, Phillies — Marson has a nine-game hitting streak at Double-A Reading. He's hitting .424 over his last 10 games, with 15 RBI and an 8:8 K:BB. Thus far this year, he's at .345/.462/.460. Philadelphia's two catchers are 29 and 35 years old, so Marson's nicely positioned.

John Raynor, OF, Marlins — Raynor went 2-for-5 Sunday for Double-A Carolina. He's hitting .394 over his last eight games and is at .291/.391/.481 for the year with 18 steals and a 40:26 K:BB over 158 at-bats. He's been pretty steady thus far and is ahead of his stolen-base and home-run numbers of last year at Low-A. He'll be on most prospect lists for 2009 and could see some Triple-A time later on this year.

Steve Garrison, P, Padres — Garrison struck out five and walked one over 5 1/3 innings on Sunday for Double-A San Antonio, giving up two earned runs on five hits. His last three starts have been excellent, with a 14:3 K:BB over 18 innings, so he may be in the process of turning around what has been a so-so year. His full-year numbers show a 32:16 K:BB over 47 1/3 innings, five home runs and a GO:AO of 0.98. These recent outings may be a turnaround, however, so he's still worth tracking.


Jack Egbert, P, White Sox — Egbert gave up five hits and two walks over five innings on Wednesday for Triple-A Charlotte. He struck out six. However, he's had some control problems during May. He has a K:BB of 18:11 over his four starts this month and has given up three home runs in 20 1/3 innings, in part because he's been behind in the count too often, when his ERA jumps to 10.29. He'll need to solve these issues if he wants to see any meaningful major league time this year. Ozzie Guillen likes to go with the hot hand, and Egbert's doesn't have that now.

Ed Easley, C. Diamondbacks — Easley's 1-for-14 in his last four games through Saturday at High-A Visalia and is hitting .194 with a 7:1 K:BB over his last 10. He's more of a streak hitter than most, apparently, as he hit .310/.396/.452 in April and is down to .247/.288/.342 in May, plus he was hot and cold last year. Based on last year's numbers and this year's trend, unless he has some kind of offensive epiphany, he's headed straight toward a backup catcher role, if that, in the majors.

Lance Broadway, P, White Sox — Broadway's May numbers are way off compared to April's at Triple-A Charlotte through his last start on May 21. Every metric is way off. His BAA has gone from .189 to .301. His GO:AO has dropped from 2.37 to a still respectable 1.55. He's given up five home runs over 23 1/3 innings, compared to three in 36 innings. His strikeout rate has dropped and his walk rate has gone up. He has multiple problems across the board, yet his record in May is 2-1, which just goes to show how little won-loss records mean. If this backsliding continues, he's going to have a very tough time getting to the majors this year as a starter. More likely is his getting some long relief duty after September 1, if that — plus, his prospect ranking is very much in jeopardy. You may want to consider selling high on him if you need to make a deal.

Dan Mayora, SS, Rockies — Mayora's 1-for-12 over his last three games through Sunday for High-A Modesto and is off to a very slow start. He's hitting just .250/.349/.345 with no home runs and four steals after compiling a Low-A line of .312/.367/.470 with 14 home runs and 26 steals last year. He's cut his strikeout percentage by five points, but it looks like he's sacrificed a lot of his offense in the process. His average is up in May compared to April, so perhaps he's in the process of figuring out how to hit at High-A.

Pedro Baez, 2B, Dodgers — Baez went 0-for-2 on Sunday for Low-A Great Lakes. He's hitting .192 over his last 10 games and .186/.255/.264 with no home runs for the year. Oddly enough, he has just one hit in 23 at-bats during day games. There are some glimmers of light at the end of a very long tunnel. He's hitting .215 in May as opposed to .160 in April. He's cut his K:BB ratio from 3:1 to 2:1 during this period as well. He just turned 20 in March, so he has a lot of time to develop, but he's off to a very slow start at Low-A.

James Happ, P, Phillies — Despite a slightly lower ERA in May (3.38 vs. 3.51 in April), Happ's internal numbers are slipping at Triple-A Lehigh Valley through his most recent start May 20. The number that jumps off the page is his GO:AO which has gone from 1.50 to 0.90 and is trending toward last year's 0.60 at Triple-A Ottawa. His home run rate's popped as well: five in 24 May innings compared to three in 33 1/3 innings in April. His May BAA has jumped 57 points to .264, which is still OK, but a bad trajectory. Philadelphia may have him experimenting with new pitches or a new arm slot for all we know, or he could be pitching through some kind of undisclosed injury, but the numbers are noteworthy regardless of the reason.

Andrew Bailey, P, A's — Bailey got rocked for seven earned runs on seven hits and a walk over five innings on Saturday for Double-A Midland. He struck out six. He's got a record 1-4 and an ERA of 6.19, but he's not quite as bad as those numbers indicate. He has a 46:26 K:BB over 48 innings, and it's coming down slightly, plus his May BAA is .231, albeit with nine home runs, though he didn't give up any in April. He'll be 25 when the 2009 season opens, so he really needs to start getting it together soon.

The Sidney Watch

A Sidney imposter had a great start on May 21, a nine-inning six-hitter during which he struck out five walked one. On Memorial Day, the real Ponson took the mound and coughed up 12 hits and three walks good for five runs over five innings with one strikeout.

Article first appeared 5/27/08

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: May 28, 2008

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