Minor League Notes, May 9, 2012
**New York Mets prospect Matt Harvey posted a victory yesterday for the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons, throwing six shutout innings against Gwinnett, allowing five hits and three walks, fanning five. On the season, he is 3-1, 4.00 ERA with a 32/16 K/BB in 36 innings with 36 hits and a 1.15 GO/AO. Harvey has been inconsistent from start to start, mixing strong outings (such as seven shutout innings on April 25th and a 10-strikeout game on April 20th) with weaker games where his command wobbled. He's holding his own overall, working to refine his command and improve the changeup to complement his low-to-mid-90s fastball, slider, and curve. Harvey needs more time, and I don't think he is a candidate for rapid promotion barring disasters on the major league staff.
**Atlanta Braves prospect Sean Gilmartin looked great last night for Double-A Mississippi, allowing one run in seven innings against Pensacola, allowing six hits and one walk, while fanning nine. Overall he has a 3.20 ERA in seven starts with a 27/7 K/BB ratio in 45 innings, 41 hits allowed, and a 0.87 GO/AO. The high strikeout game is interesting given that his K/IP ratio has otherwise been unimpressive this year, which is his main statistical flaw. His key pitch is a nasty changeup, and he has a typical finesse pitcher arsenal reliant on strong command of a mediocre-velocity fastball. The Braves drafted him in the first round out of Florida State last year with the idea that, while he may not have a high ceiling, he should get to the majors within a year or two. That concept seems on track.
**Toronto Blue Jays outfield prospect Marcus Knecht had a night to remember for High-A Dunedin yesterday, going 4-for-5 with two homers and five RBI. This has otherwise been a disappointing season for him: he's at .193/.254/.395 with 10 walks and 41 strikeouts in 114 at-bats. Knecht hit .273/.377/.474 with 16 homers last year in the Midwest League, and I thought he would continue to improve this year. Contact issues have prevented that, but he's still just 21 and has plenty of sock in his bat. He was a third round pick in 2010 from Connors State Junior College in Oklahoma, but is a Toronto native.
**Minnesota Twins prospect Miguel Sano has hit four homers in his last six games for Low-A Beloit and is now hitting .304/.421/.670 overall, with 10 homers, 20 walks, and 39 strikeouts in 115 at-bats over 32 games. His strikeout rate is quite high but his walk rate has improved and he's been especially destructive against left-handed pitching, hitting .414/.469/.793 in 29 at-bats with a BB/K ratio of 3-4. Sano's incredible bat speed has enabled him to overcome any problems with overaggressiveness, at least against Low-A pitching. He turns 19 on Friday and it will be interesting to see how soon the Twins are willing to promote him to High-A if he remains this hot.