The Arizona Diamondbacks traded relief pitcher Joe Thatcher and outfielder Tony Campana to the Los Angeles Angels today. In exchange, Arizona receives a pair of prospects: outfielder Zach Borenstein and pitcher Joey Krehbiel. Here's a look at the prospects involved.
Zach Borenstein, OF: Borenstein was drafted by the Angels in the 23rd round in 2011 from Eastern Illinois University. He had a decent year for Cedar Rapids in the Midwest League in 2012 (.266/.339/.485, wRC+128), but exploded in 2013 with an excellent season for Inland Empire in the California League, hitting .337/.403/.631 with 28 homers, leading the circuit in batting average and slugging percentage. In 2014 he's hit decently in 48 games for Double-A Arkansas (.266/.338/.440, wRC+123) but did not hit well in 30 games for Triple-A Salt Lake City (.256/.279/.342, wRC+58). His strike zone judgment was a big problem in Triple-A.
Borenstein is a 6-0, 205 pound left-handed hitter and right-handed thrower, born July 23, 1990. His best physical tools are strength and power. His running speed and arm strength are nothing special. He's an adequate defender at either corner but his value lies in his bat. California League breakouts are often a mirage and skeptics question his swing, but he did hit well in the Midwest League in '12 and his Arkansas numbers in '14 are better than they look on the surface, above-average in context and quite in line with what he did at Cedar Rapids. The main blemish on his resume is the weak month at Salt Lake. He is not going to hit .337 at higher levels, but if he can refine his approach against advanced pitching, his power could have value.
Joey Krehbiel, RHP: Krehbiel was drafted by the Angels in the 12th round in 2011 from high school in Seminole, Florida. He's received little notice outside of Angels circles but has a good track record, posting a 2.74 ERA with a 70/28 K/BB in 66 innings for Low-A Burlington in 2013, followed by a 2.00 ERA with a 23/7 K/BB in 18 innings between Burlington and High-A Inland Empire in 2014. He has a 133/47 K/BB in 122 career innings.
Krehbiel is a 6-2, 185 pound right-hander born December 20, 1992. A former infielder, he works with a 90-95 MPH fastball and has made progress improving his slider. His arm angle is tough on right-handed hitters and he profiles as a middle reliever at higher levels.
ANALYSIS: While Borenstein and Krehbiel aren't outstanding prospects, they have more potential future value than fungible veterans Thatcher and Campana. I like this for Arizona.