Thursday, December 3, 2009

International Roundup

Salty had arm discomfort during his second outing and came out of the game.

Feliz has yet to make his debut with only 3 weeks left in the season. If he doesn't debut as a starter this week and ends up in the pen (if he debuts at all), you have to wonder if TX 1. has already decided to move him to the bullpen 2. doesn't believe he needs to be stretched out in order to contend for the rotation out of spring training.

MaxRam has a 10 game hitting streak (.350), batting .333 over his last 15, after batting .200 the 15 before that. His strikeout rate still remains high. One interesting note that might presage his future with TX in 2010 is that he is primarily playing DH.

If you could combine Renny Osuna and Lemon, they would make the ideal utility player. Renny plays ML average defense at 3 positions and hits lots of singles while Lemon plays a good second with more gap power and solid contact. Renny, by the way, one of my fav players, is batting .338 in the VZWL, splitting time at second and short. It is surprising for some but not to me. He batted about .360 in 2008 with lots of gap power, but mysteriously lost his swing in 2009, hitting about .255 and mostly slapping singles around. So, who knows, given his age, but his rookie debut was delayed for a year (stuck in the DR i think) due to some visa issues...And this league by the way, the VZWL, is a step _up_ in talent and especially experience from AA so kudos to him.

Luis Mendoza is having a great run in the Mexican league, but it is the Mexican league, which I would peg at about a AA level which lacks elite talent but which has more professional experience. So, while you cross your fingers that his sinker is back, he is still touching 96, and that his CB flashes above average (with an average change), you probably shouldn't hold your breath. The other issue is that he has already pitched a total of ~170 innings this year with 4 starts remaining for him. You gotta think that they would shut him down or send him to the pen right about now. 176 innings is about the max a minor leaguer will throw in a season of 28 starts.

Omar Poveda also shouldn't be throwing too many innings this winter but has surprisingly been moved into the starting rotation. He doesn't need any more innings, this kid, and he had shoulder issues in 2008. His last outing he pitched out of the pen so let's hope the move sticks.

Guillermo Moscoso continues to pitch out of the bullpen in the VZWL, like he has for the past 3 seasons. He doesn't really like pitching out of the pen, and, I would argue (as would he), he is more effective as a starter so I hope he is given a legit shot to compete for a rotation spot. By the way, for those who thought Moscoso a risky pickup due to his injury history, this marks the third consecutive year that he has pitched over 100 innings (including his winter ball stats). And lest you dismiss winterball as child's play, Caribbean winter ball is a serious deal, the Latin equivalent to MLB's season, and a national sport with high level talent. Winter ball matters; this ain't no AFL with 6 fans in the stands and 200 minor league geeks around the country creaming their jeans over AFL pitch f/x data...

Given how terrible Teabag looked at the plate on the AFL, I'm a little surprised that he isn't in the PR league getting as many at bats as he can - their league runs for 4 more weeks.

TX appears to be out of the running for any more Intl FA signs until the ownership thing gets settled but they could surprise me. Given the spate of signings in the last week, the Ranger's haven't been mentioned in any scuttlebutt. A quick summary:

Jacob Beltre, 60k (!), Seattle
Santo Aybar, Milw
E. Moronta, 570 k (!), NYY
Jochy Ogando, 275k, Sea
Jiminian, 250k, Seattle (per one Dominican-based source)

No TX links to Chapman, DePaula, or Arguelles in the last couple of weeks while Seattle has been busy (arrrgghh) and is still being linked to other kids of interest as we speak.


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