Let's get to intros before we begin...
I created the MiLB blog HOTF in 2008. I’ve been a professional MiLB writer for nine years & I cover MiLB, Rays prospects for the site.
And I'm happy to be
@MinorLeagueBall new Social Media Director.
Nick Mellotte has been a writer for Minor League Ball since fall of 2012. He’s also worked for Perfect Game. He contributed solid daily coverage this season.
Here we go. Rays PRE-SEASON review just went up, so we’ll start with them.
There weren’t a lot of surprises, particularly the T5. Taylor Guerrieri (#3). A lot of bumps along the way for the top prospect with suspension for banned substance & TJ. There were/are concerns about his maturity, but reports are great on how he’s come through it.
Performance results for TG were also very good. In the end, I don’t think what’s happened will slow his progress too much.,
Also, Hak Ju Lee (#2) didn’t quite have the season Rays fans hoped for after he returned from knee surgery. Loss of playing time big for both guys, but I’m curious how much it’ll affect them next two seasons facing more advanced opponents.
NICK: Hak-Ju was definitely a disappointment with the bat, but Odorizzi was studly. Both Hak-Ju and TG both have youth on their side though. 2015 will be a big year for Lee to prove he's healthy. I still think very highly of Guerrieri. Almost feels inevitable for young pitchers now to go down with Tommy John.
@Lark11 You don't think K.Kiermaier has shown enough with bat, especially in light of his defense, to project as starting CF?
@TheKid247 Lots of misfires in the draft from the Rays these last few years, and it shows in their lack of top tier farm talent now.
Red Sox up next.
#RedSox have solid guys leading the system: Xander Bogaerts, Henry Owens, Jackie Bradley Jr. Brian Johnson & Mookie Betts received #MiLBall POY honors from the Red Sox. Thoughts on them @melotticus & followers? #MiLBall
NICK: Love me some Mookie, hes going to be such a stud. BJohnson was a revelation and Owens keeps on dominating
NICK: Been a big fan of Coyle as long as he's healthy. That’s the tricky part for him.
I still have faith in the Webster/Ranaudo/Barnes trio . They all saw MLB time and should be able to build on it
Braves up next
NICK: I'm all in on Bethancourt. Also curious to see if Gattis goes back to the OF or gets dealt. My $$ is on a trade
@TheKid247 The OBP trend is a tad worrisome for Betancourt
JESSICA: Joey Terdoslavich (#9) has spent 2 yrs in Triple-A. When we talked at Spring Training he was open to
#Braves giving him time at C. I didn’t think it made much sense. His AVG/OBP/SLG was down in ’14. Thoughts on Terdoslavich @melotticus? #Braves #MiLBall
NICK: Terdo deserves a shot somewhere. Over 1000 AAA AB's and passable defense at 1B and corner OF.
And to finish up today’s chat, Yankees up next.
JESSICA: Manny Banuelos’s career trajectory hasn’t gone as expected. Saw him a bit in Trenton this year & hard not to think about difference compared to Dellin Betances. What are expectations of Banuelos at this point? And the state of the Yankees farm system in general?
NICK: Severino and Clarkin made excellent progress this year and should be top 5 candidates. Disappointed in [Eric] Jagielo.
JESSICA: Also, there's been questions about Mason Williams work ethic. But Thunder manager Tony Franklin talked about how his growth overall.
@prospect_pulse [Banuelos] ML projection was as a reliever before the injury, if that's what he hits post-injury, Yanks don't lose anything.
@jedleyq Have no issue with Banuelos as a lefty power reliever. Threw 70 pitches at most. Command was spotty.
NICK: RIP Mason Williams' baseball career. Trending downward hard. Still young but I just dont see it happening
That concludes this week’s ‘Social Sunday’ Twitter chat. Reminder that Padres Cody Decker will be a guest on October 5th. You can tweet questions & comments. More details to come. Thank you to everyone that joined in & thanks to
@melotticus! We'll have chats coming up regularly & I'll announce hosts/guests. #MiLBall
Prospect chats & player Q&A’s will have rotating hosts. The object is to get more writers here involved, so feel free to step up to the plate if you’d be open to hosting at some point.