Minor League Ball Gameday, May 8

Trevor Bauer - USA TODAY Sports

Good morning prospect watchers. I am safe and sound in a La Quinta Inn in Davenport, Iowa. The trip yesterday was uneventful. I stopped in Des Moines to visit my mother and sister and otherwise i just did a lot of driving. The weather forecast looks fairly good for today's game: the rain is supposed to hold off until after 10 PM or so. Thursday looks rainy during the day but there is a reasonable chance that the rain will end late tomorrow afternoon before tomorrow evening's contest, so hopefully both games I came to see will be played.

Best of all, Byron Buxton is till on the Cedar Rapids roster. Alas, Carlos Correa is on the DL for Quad Cities, but nonetheless this will be an exciting matchup.

***I know I speak for everyone here to say that our thoughts and prayers are with Toronto Blue Jays pitcher J.A. Happ and his family.

***Yesterday's Minor League Ball Gameday thread has Tuesday's highlights.

***Six and two-thirds hitless innings from Indians prospect Trevor Bauer for Triple-A Columbus yesterday with seven strikeouts and four walks. He now has a 31/10 K/BB in 24.2 innings with just 15 hits allowed. I am generally pro-Bauer in the sense that I usually like mavericks and prefer players who take the game very seriously. . .whatever you think of Bauer, you have to admit he takes the game seriously. . .but I do find the command issue worrisome. His stuff is good enough for him to thrive in Triple-A even with his "unusual" approach, but in the majors I expect erratic performance: occasional brilliance but also some games where he just gets blown up. He will stabilize eventually but does he stabilize as an ace or as a number three guy?

***Outstanding game from Miami Marlins outfield prospect Christian Yelich for Double-A Jacksonville yesterday: 5-for-6 with a homer and two triples.He's now hitting .333/.382/.635 in 14 games.

***Minnesota Twins catching prospect Josmil Pinto is 6-for-10 in his last two games for Double-A New Britain and is now hitting .347.421/.565 on the season. His defense has improved over the last couple of seasons and he's hitting the snot out of the ball in Double-A. He's a bit of an older prospect at age 24 but he needs a lot more attention than he's received.

***I mentioned Atlanta Braves second base prospect Tommy La Stella a couple of days ago. A few hours later he was promoted to Double-A Mississippi, and he went 3-for-6 with two doubles and a triple in his first game yesterday.

**Another home run and another double for Boston Red Sox prospect Garin Cecchini, currently hitting .379/.467/.670 for High-A Salem. He's also stolen 10 bases and has an excellent BB/K/PA ratio at 17/16/124. I was hoping his power would increase and it looks like that's happening.

***Today's slate of minor league contests.

***Are we undervaluing pitchers from Asian countries? Ryan Potter looks at the question posed by Dave Cameron a couple of days ago at Fangraphs.

***Steven Goldman has some thoughtful commentary on J.A. Happ, Ray Chapman, and our inherent mortality.

***Rob Neyer looks at Matt Harvey's one-hitter and where it fits into Mets history

***Carson Cistulli looks at his "Fringe Five" prospects for the week. He's got some video there of Cleveland Indians prospect Danny Salazar, his 98 MPH fastball, and his nasty changeup. Salazar hasn't received a huge amount of attention but that is changing and it needs to. He has a 2.67 ERA in 34 innings for Double-A Akron, with 51 strikeouts and 10 walks. He's not doing it with junk pitches either.

***TOMORROW I will begin organizing the 2013 Minor League Ball Community mock draft.

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