Friday, November 13, 2009

Moves and Notes

Travis Metcalf and Mike Henckley declare free agency.

Is it time to worry about MaxRam yet? His batting average has dropped 30pts to .207 (.189 vs rhp, 27g) during an 8game slump ( .083 ). Remember that this is the same league that he won the MVP in last winter. Given that he played in 50 games last winter after a full season, and came out of the league with 1 or 2 wrist injuries that shelved him for much of 2009, I'm not sure I like the idea of him playing again this fall. Why not give him some time off to get healthy? Given the uncertainty about his health (and all of the possible bad habits that may have emerged attempting to compensate for his injuries while playing), I'm not sure it is time to panic yet if his VZWL performance falls flat.

However, his prospect rating has definitely taken a hit in my book, as I'm not sure he can be considered a catcher proper anymore given that he has essentially missed a year of his development at the position, perhaps the most critical year of his career given how ready he was thought to be as a hitter along with the failure to convince many he had the chops to remain at the position. I think he is most likely a DH now as no team is going to want to wait for him for 2-3 years at the ML level to develop as a catcher going on 26 - Salty is an ugly reminder of what poor ML catching looks like when your skill set is not adequate to the task.

After a disastrous 0-5 outing with 4 strikeouts, Lemon was batting .166 with zero xbh after his first 6 AFL games, continuing a ruinous second half for him. He appeared overmatched in a league which was about the same skill level as Frisco. The coaching staff apparently saw a few things and helped him make some adjustments of the next 5 days in which he did not appear in a game. Over the last 9 games(34ab) since his return, he is batting .441 with 2 doubles 2 triples 2 homers 9 rbi and 8 runs with a walk and 2 strikeouts. IF his bat comes around next year, he has a chance as a starting second baseman it would seem, but he did not have a good year in the end. I wonder if scouts think he can play SS well enough to land a utility infielder role, primarily at second, sometimes at SS; His fringy range might be a problem. If not, this would definitely crimp his chances to make a roster some day as he could succeed only in the capacity of a starter and all of the stars would have to align. I seem to say this every year on the kid, but I think we might have a pretty definitive answer around 8/1/2010, when you hope he might have been in AAA for a month or two by that time...

PRWL started yesterday. The roster sizes are enormous as they had to integrate the Cangrejeros' players throughout the league due to the disbanding of that team over a stadium use dispute. So, don't expect to see them get a lot of playing time. I was hoping that Miguelito would get a fair amount of time just to see if he can handle what will be AA-AAA pitching with lots of professional experience. As I stated previously, Sierra and Torres are likely considered reserve players there to be mentored. Also, I am very happy to see Mike Ballard there as he is the lefty in the system who might be the most likely candidate for a loogy role next year (unless Kiker emerges in ST, and he would be more than a loogy hopefully). AJ Murray didn't deserve the hype. Now that Hinckley is a FA, I think Ballard gets the call for a 40 spot over Murray.

Kevin Torres
Miguel Velazquez
Ruben Sierra Jr
Michael Ballard

Adalberto Flores


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