Filtering by Tag: Minor Leagues

Kevin Keyes and Other Long Home Runs

It's hard to look at Kevin Keyes ‚Äčand not be impressed at his size. The6'3" 225 lb 1B/OF is much bigger and stronger than you and I; he proved this on Wednesday night, hitting an estimated 440-450 foot home run that broke some lights at Five County Stadium, the home of the Carolina Mudcats. Here is the link to the massive shot - the uploader does not allow it to be embedded at this time.

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Spring Training Goggles: Zach Walters

Every season there is a player that sticks out in Spring Training to me. Itdoesn't matter what the player has done over his entire career; there is always one guy whose success in 40 Spring Training at bats causes me to ignore his entire past. This season that player is Zach Walters, the 23 year old switch-hitting shortstop that the Nationals received in the 2011 trade that sent Jason Marquis to Arizona.

Through Monday, March 11, Walters put up a .333/.385/.583 triple slash in 26 plate appearances, including 2 home runs. Given the fact that his Baseball Reference OppQual of 7.6 stands a little closer to AAA than AA quality of competition (and nowhere near the MLB level) and the fact that it's 26 plate appearances, there is really nothing there to draw conclusions from. Yet still, I am more optimistic about Walters in March of 2013 than I was in October of 2012 despite no real games having been played in between.

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Nats spend $225,000 on Dominican teenager

I'm admittedly not the most knowledgeable person when it comes to international free agency. If the Nats had given a sliver of effort in chasing IFAs since Smileygate went down, I may have shown some effort following IFAs myself. My interest level did bump up a little bit just now, though, as the Nationals have signed 16 year old Dominican 3B Neivy Pilier/Nievi Pelier (I'm sticking with Neivy Pilier for now) for $225,000 (the most they've given to an IFA since Smileygate).

Pilier is certainly an interesting prospect. DPLBaseball.com described him in October as a "solid bat with occasional power, defensive skills and arm strength" and today as a "hard nose (sic) player with game instincts...(with) raw power and shows signs that average game power will come with development." DPL Baseball goes on to note that Pilier is only average with the glove, but has a very good arm, so he should be able to play the corners in both the infield and outfield as he develops. Matt Garrioch of Minor League Ball put Pilier close to the end of his 2012 MLB International Preview (61st out of 66 names), but it's always better to be low on the list than not there at all.

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The Minor League/Draft Ramifications of the Span trade

 

I like the Denard Span trade for many reasons. The Nationals have been looking for a center fielder since their inception and got one at the relatively low price of a minor league pitcher in Alex Meyer who has a ton of ML starting potential as well as bust/bullpen potential. I won't go further into the trade from a ML level since my colleague David Huzzard already went over that, but there are even more ripple effects caused by the trade when you look at it from a minor league and draft perspective.

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