Minor League Level Review (AAA): Starling Marte and Matt Harvey Promoted, Dan Straily Dominates

July 26, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Starling Marte (6) hits a home run in the first inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-US PRESSWIRE

Every other Sunday I take a look at some of the top prospects in the two AAA level leagues, and see how their seasons are progressing to this point. We've seen a number of prospects come up from AAA this season, and both Starling Marte and Matt Harvey definitely announced their presence in their MLB debuts. Marte launched a home run on the first pitch he saw as a Major Leaguer, and Harvey struck out 11 Diamondbacks over 5 1/3 innings for his first career victory. As we get closer to the end of the minor league season, we should start seeing even more of the top prospects in AAA up in the Majors.

Hitters

Name Team League G R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Starling Marte PIT IL 99 64 12 62 21 .286 .347 .500
Domonic Brown PHI IL 56 32 5 26 44 .286 .335 .437
Wil Myers KC PCL 63 44 16 49 2 .280 .362 .560
Brett Jackson CHC PCL 98 62 14 44 22 .257 .336 .477

  • The White Sox promoted OF Jared Mitchell to AAA, despite playing just a middling half season at AA in his career. He did have 12 home runs and 20 stolen bases, but with a .240 batting average and a crazy 126 strikeouts in just 334 at bats.
  • While many of us would love to see Wil Myers up in the Majors, and he likely doesn't have very much left to prove with his bat, I am seriously doubting that we will see him at any point this season. The Royals have been unsuccessful in trying to move Jeff Francoeur to this point, and until there is a spot for him there is absolutely no reason to start Myers' service clock.
  • Jackson seems like a very unusual player - he has a ton of extra base hits (20 doubles and 11 triples), but his average remains low because of a ridiculous 147 strikeouts so far. This is probably what he is going to be in the Majors - low average, high counting numbers, tons of strikeouts.
Pitchers
Name Team League W ERA IP H BB K
Matt Harvey NYM IL 7 3.68 110 97 48 112
Tyler Cloyd PHI IL 10 1.98 109.1 82 26 73
Danny Hultzen SEA PCL 1 4.33 27 31 21 35
Tyler Skaggs ARI PCL 3 2.28 27.2 28 7 16
Dan Straily OAK PCL 4 0.96 47 20 14 63

  • Straily has been unreal to this point, and by all accounts the performance seems to be legitimate. He seems destined to be called up at some point this season, but it is a matter of whether or not the A's can find a spot in their starting rotation for him. The rest of the rotation has been excellent so far, and with Brett Anderson and Dallas Braden both potentially returning, along with Brandon McCarthy, we may not see Straily until next season.
  • Trevor Bauer was demoted back to AAA last week, and is being skipped at the moment after being hit by two different line drives recently. I think he may spend the rest of the season down in AAA, and then get a September call up.
  • Tyler Cloyd really only seems to profile as a back end of the rotation type in the best case scenario, but the performance he has provided this year at both AA and AAA has been excellent. Hopefully he will get a shot at a rotation spot for the Phillies next spring.

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