Baseball America held its weekly Hot Sheet chat on Friday afternoon, and here are some excerpts. The Hot Sheet was headed by Rays pitching prospect Matt Moore who struck out 20 batters in 12 innings pitched. Dodgers outfield prospect Kyle Russell was #2 with his big power week at AA Chatanooga.
On the the excerpts:
Ben (Columbus, OH): How are concerned are you about Billy Hamilton (.199/.289/.271)? Is he not the prospect everyone thought? Or are his stats the product of learning to switch hit on the job?
Jim Shonerd: Lets see how he adjusts in the second half. He was a multi-sport guy coming out of high school, so there was that rawness to deal with already. Add on the learning to switch-hit and you'll get a guy that needs some time.
Jason wrote about Hamilton on Friday, and here are some thoughts on why he is struggling at the plate this year.
Halvy (Portland, OR): What does the future hold for Austin Romine at this point? How soon will he be a big leaguer, and what is his offensive potential at that level? Will he ever play for the Yankees? Thanks...
Jim Shonerd: A lot depends on where Montero ends up, certainly. Romine won't be a star offensively, but he should be capable of holding his own and being a solid defender. But with Montero ahead of him and Gary Sanchez behind him, it wouldn't surprise me if he got moved.
Including Romine in a package for a starting pitcher would make sense for the Yankees right now. There are plenty of teams looking for young major league ready catchers, and the Yankees will be looking for some starting pitchers over the next two months.
More Hot Sheet chat excerpts after the jump:
Ryan (Pennsylvania): The Rays clearly like keeping their pitchers at the same level for the whole season. Should they make an exception for Moore this year?
Jim Shonerd: I think he'll get to Durham this year. Not until the second half, at a minimum, but I think it'll happen. It's true he was kept in high A all year last year, but that was after he had a lousy first half. He's been so dominant this early in the season, I have to believe they'll challenge him if he keeps it up.
Moore has dominated at every level so far in the minors. He is 2-3 with a 2.91 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, a 76-14 K/BB rate in 52+ innings pitched in 10 AA starts this season.
VLJ (California): With all the financial trouble the Dodger's are having, and the likelihood that they wont be able to above slot in draft bonuses, it seems like the Dodgers have to develop the guys already in minors. Do you see any of the prospects mentioned today, or others like Webster etc. contributing to the Dodgers later this year?
Jim Shonerd: The Dodgers have already used their share of rookies, with Sands, Jansen, Elbert (yes, still a rookie at least by our standards), Ivan De Jesus, Javy Guerra ... Won't be surprised if Dee Gordon or Trayvon Robinson, despite his recent struggles, make it to LA at some point this year. Josh Lindblom could be another bullpen possibility.
I agree with Shonerd. I think all 3 make it to LA this season, especially if they are sellers come July 31st or before, which is likely if they don't turn things around. They just lost 2 of 3 to the Astros who own the worst record in baseball.