Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Brackman, Montero and Feliz: Three prospects moving in different directions

We stopped doing the daily prospect roundups, for various reasons, but its time to check back in with our favorite prospects and see how they are doing midway through the year. It's quite the mixed bag, let me tell you.

Let's start with the worst: Andrew Brackman. Disaster. Complete disaster.

Brackman is 1-11 on the year, have thrown 85.2 innings over 19 starts. He has walked 64 batters and struck out 79. His ERA is, gulp, 6.72. The only good news is that Brackman is allegedly healthy and is notching innings. He is also striking out nearly a batter per inning. He is, of course, getting horrible results and walking way too many batters per innings. Via River Ave Blues a week or so ago, I saw these two tweets about Brackman's velo. It could be fatigue, or it could be something worse. The Yankees have moved him to the bullpen for the remainder of the year in order to limit his innings and prep him for 2010, which may be do-or-die time for the giant pitcher.

Sweet, sweet Jesus Montero. After starting the year in High A, Montero earned himself a call-up to Double A. He deserved it after posting a monstrous .356/.406/.583/.989 line, with 8 homers in 48 games. In Double A Montero continued his torrid pace, and has put together a line of .307/.371/.511/.882, as a 19 year old. He has 7 home runs in 36 games. In short, the dude is raking. Baseball America took note, placing him on their Untouchable List. Montero also shot up BA's Prospect Ranking list, coming in as the third best prospect in all of baseball in their Midseason Top 25, behind Jason Heyward of the Braves and Mike Stanton of the Marlins. Not too shabby. Unfortunately, Montero recently broke his finger and is out for the year. Look for him to play some Fall Ball and get some time in AAA in 2010, with a outside chance at cracking the Yankees in mid-to-late 2010.

Neftali Feliz is having himself a great year in AAA (as a 21 year old!) posting a 3.44 ERA over 73.1 IP, striking out 70 and walking only 28. I don't think it would be unreasonable to expect him to compete for a spot in the rotation next spring. The kid has a gun. The Rangers recently called him up when Kinsler went to the DL with a hammy strain, and he did not disappoint. More on this later.

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