Good, Bad, Interesting – Vol. 2

Our weekly look at the leaders, trailers, and outliers in the Washington Nationals minor leagues.

Our weekly look at the leaders, trailers, and outliers in the Washington Nationals minor leagues.

SYRACUSE 7-14, 6th Place IL North, 7 games back

Good Carlos Maldonado .333/.429/.458 in 9G
Bad Boomer Whiting 2-for-7 in SB attempts, .483OPS
Interesting Josh Wilkie 13K in 10.1IP

HARRISBURG 10-9, 1st place E.L. West, 1/2 game ahead

Good Tyler Moore .326BA, .674SLG last 10G
Bad Derek Norris .154/.303/.192 in 9G
Interesting Ryan Mattheus 1.08ERA, 2SV in 8G

POTOMAC 8-11, 3rd Place C.L. North, 4 games back

Good Jeff Kobernus 9SB, 0CS, 10R in 19G
Bad J.R. Higley .136/.269/.227 in 7G
Interesting Pat Lehman 5SV, 0.58WHIP in 7G

HAGERSTOWN 12-9, T3rd Sally League North, 2½ games back

Good Bryce Harper .323/.425/.645, 5HR in 19G
Bad Chris McKenzie 12.46ERA, 17BB in 13IP
Interesting Chris Manno 0.68WHIP, 17K in 10⅓ IP

Author: Luke Erickson

Since 2009, Luke Erickson has been chief writer, editor, and bottle-washer of Potomac is his home base as a season-ticket holder, but he has visited every affiliate north of Florida at least once, with multiple trips to Hagerstown and Harrisburg.

34 thoughts on “Good, Bad, Interesting – Vol. 2”

  1. (Bad) Derek Norris .154/.303/.192 in 9G

    That .303 OBP is about the same as the Nats cleanup hitter Adam Laroche

    1. Unfortunately, Derek has set the bar on himself as a ~.400 OBP guy, but the real “bad” is the lack of power. I’m sure he’ll figure it out, but I have to call ’em if they’re there to be called.

    2. But, as you astutely point out, Moore (an older prospect as well?) does seem to have figured it out. If he goes on another tear and hits 30+ homers / 30+ doubles with a close
      to .400 OBP? He then puts pressure on Marerro all the way up to Adam LaRoche. AA is pretty close to major league level … yet Chris Marerro is still fairly young at age 22 to be playing in AAA? Might peg that as “interesting”?

      As for Norris, according to what Randy Knorr said he needs a full 2 years honing his catching skills in the minors. He’s lost a lot of time to injury and sharing the starting
      catching duties. In his case patience is the watch word?

      Perhaps that could be added? The Good, Bad, Interesting, and patience required?

  2. Bryce Harper .323/.425/.645, 5HR in 19G

    How many weeks or months before Bryce Harper is promoted to Potomac?

    1. Harper’s a special case so we can’t point to the past to divine the future. My personal feeling is that no promotion should happen before a player sees (or is seen by) the entire league at least once (e.g. Burgess in Apr/May vs. Jun/Jul). The Sally League’s a little harder for that standard, but if he’s still ripping on teams after they’ve seen him multiple series, then he ought to be promoted. That said, Potomac has a monster homestand in June that I wouldn’t mind seeing him in…

        1. Zero chance. They can’t afford to let their prize draft pick get hurt in that dump, plus it would be punishment to that idiot Potomac owner for not addressing stadium issues to have Harper bypass Potomac – he’d miss out on making a penny.

        2. P-Nats just sent an email detailing the promos for the next homestand, which I take to mean that they believe the field has been repaired. It has certainly been warm enough this week.

    2. Wonder if Oduber and Kelso follow? Both are having similar outstanding years in Hagerstown? And then there’s that guy Cameron Selik? Another Matt Caine in the offing?

      1. Easy, big fella – Let’s not go all ‘Bowdenesque’ here & start hyper-promoting players again. As I personally see it, Oduber & Harper could earn a promotion sometime in May, if they maintain their current hitting prowess. Kelso could follow sometime in June, given the same criteria.

        For the pitchers, both Selik (& Manno, fwiw) are still very inexperienced – They may get early (mid-May) promotions only if someone above them either horribly fails or gets injured; Otherwise, look for mid-June as a promotion window.

  3. If Moore continues to hit like he has recently (and the second half of last year), at what point do baseball people start to believe in him?

  4. Hagerstown local, Go Suns. I am a season ticket holder and I am from Chicago. Hagerstown is a little boring but when the season starts it adds life to a old school town

    Saying that . I consider myself a big baseball guy, and will give you my take on the the good players

    Selik, is turning heads , control pithcher, not over powering but locates well and changes speed

    Harper, He is the MAN Listen the hype is always louder then the results, but make no mistake this young man is th ereal deal

    Kelso, Love him gritty discipline and understands the game. Could be a very functional utility player

    Mccatty , Jordan and Graham are all consistent pitchers that have a shot to really be good pitchers at the next level. I like Grahams determination on the mound, and I love Jordans stuff. He keeps batters of balance

    Last but not least , I am thrilled to be a Suns fan and even more thrilled when we are ahead and hand the ball to Manno. Let me say that I met Manno at the Lucheon. he was awesome, as nice a young man as they get. Now I watch him pitch and he can bring it . He challenges people and simply put misses bats. As a fan its great as a scout you have to look a bit deeper. Is he a lefty specialist(I think Not). Right handed batters do not see the ball out of his hand. He uses a cutter and some of the times that he uses his change and slider, they are pretty filthy.
    Any way go suns and hope I was not long winded

    1. Rosenbaum keeps getting compared to Milone, both of whom are favorites of mine, but until he solves his control issues, that comparison is unfair to Milone who has far superior command of the strike zone. I do get why the comparison is made (and it’s not because they’re both lefthanded, 6’1″, and about 210) — Rosenbaum doesn’t “battle,” he uses what he has that night to get outs, which is in part why he’s been walking so many because he will not give in and throw a get-me-over pitch.

      Brad Peacock went through this last summer and I think the key to Rosenbaum making the next step is very similar. He needs to get one of his secondary, offspeed pitches over for strikes much more consistently so batters have another dimension to worry about. With Peacock it was his changeup, with Danny it seems to be his curve.

  5. Is Whiting the minor league version of Nyjer Morgan? (minus the histrionics)

    Surprising promotion to AAA, good short season results, and now looking rather exposed in AAA. Would he be better off in AA facing top talent, and not a lot of grizzled veterans? More heat, less junk?

    Are the CS results due to them telling him to run at every chance, or is he making bad choices (ala Nyjer)? He’s also only hitting .175, which is up via his .206 last 10 game average. His OBP is a craptacular .283. He’s got a 6/4 K/B ratio now too.

    Hate to say it, but I think he’s young filler.

    Corey Brown has upped his average by hitting .242 in the last 10 games… that’s not a compliment. 5 BB helps him to a .342 OBP though.

    1. ck: Boomer was one of Trent’s favorites last year from their days together in POT; He was a suprise promotion last year, IIRC. He’s wicked fast, but his slash line has always looked a little on the low side. What he might be encountering at Syracuse are pitchers who are better at holding runners, and catchers with better arms.

      Unless he adjusts / adapts, his skillset probably plays better at the AA level than it has in the International League.

    1. Marcus your BA link also produced this tid bit:

      Nationals RHP Brad Peacock has sliced and diced his way through the Eastern League with a 28-3 K-BB mark and a 1.50 ERA in 24 innings for Double-A Harrisburg. Two starts this week helped pad the 23-year-old’s stats, as Peacock allowed one run in 14 1/3 innings with 16 strikeouts and one walk . . .

      Also, as Sue would put it, someone familiar made the “bad” list following the “interesting” as in Peacock above … and that was Michael Burgess returned to Adanced A ball. Excellent trade by Mike Rizzo. Gorzelanny so far seems to provide the better part of the bargain.

      What about Bradley Meyers? Both he and Maya appear to be dominating in AA and AAA respectively? Typically no mention of them?

      1. Meyers was named last week — I try to avoid repeats. Maya has a 5.01 ERA and has given up three or more earned runs in three of four starts; not exactly what you’d expect from an almost-30-year-old in AAA. It’s not an exact science, and with AAA, it’s often a dartboard exercise.

  6. Sue, you’ve seem them in person. I haven’t. But I thought (think) Peacock has, as well as a curve, an above average fastball. As a prospect, isn’t he ahead of pitchers like Milone and Rosenbaum?

    1. Rosenbaum, yes; Milone, no, but he has more upside. Peacock does have a plus fastball, and it’s my understanding he’s developed a two-seamer. If he can command that, then he’ll be what we’ve waiting for a RHP that’s not a middle reliever.

  7. Sue,
    I just wanted to know about what you thought about the pitchers in AA Harrisburg. What do you think about Meyers, Peacock, Arnesen, E. Davis, and Tatusko?

    1. Meyers ought to be AAA; his success thus far is indicative that he’s mastered the level.

      Peacock throws hard and has two good offspeed offerings, and appears to have learned that going 7 innings means more than 10Ks.

      Arnesen is a serviceable pitcher, but doesn’t throw particularly hard, which makes him fungible with the Rizzo F.O.

      I’ve never seen Tatusko and Davis pitch in person because they weren’t at Potomac. If I’m lucky, one of them will be on the mound when I make it to Harrisburg for a visit.

  8. If that is the way they feel about Arnesen then why don’t they trade him for a stick? The offense at the AA and AAA levels is anemic.

    1. The market for a 27-y.o. AA/AAA pitcher is non-existent. Any organization that would want one for “plug-in” purposes can easily sign a pitcher from the independent leagues. That’s no disrespect to Arnesen, mind you; by all accounts, he’s a good guy and well-liked and respected.

  9. Major Tyler Moore news for all those who don’t know.

    Via Byron Kerr — After experiencing major leg pain throughout last season, Moore had his right leg x-rayed in the offseason and they found a TUMOR the size of a golf ball! Thankfully, it was benign, but since he wasn’t able to do a lot of normal offseason activities it’s very understandable that he got off to a slow start this spring.
    He’s bringing it now!

    Now, why would the Nats not tell anybody about this, it’s certainly a major human interest story.

    1. And especially if he makes it after all… (throws hat in the air). 😉

      In all seriousness, most clubs aren’t keen on divulging medical stuff. There’s a reason why every trade requires a full physical.

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