Notes on prospects from lead prospect analyst Eric Longenhagen. Read previous installments here.
Joe Palumbo, LHP, Texas Rangers (Profile)
Level: Rehabbing Age: 23 Org Rank: 18 FV: 40
Line: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 BB, 3 K, 0 R
Sunday was Palumbo’s first start back from Tommy John surgery. He was into the mid-90s with a plus curveball before the injury, which caused him to miss all of 2017. Yerry Rodriguez (more detail here) had a second strong outing in relief of Palumbo, striking out seven in six innings of four-hit, one-run ball. Video of Rodriguez appears below.
Jo Adell, OF, Los Angeles Angels (Profile)
Level: Hi-A Age: 19 Org Rank: 1 (59 overall) FV: 50
Line: 5-for-9, HR combined the last two days
A little over a year ago, disparate opinions regarding Adell’s bat-to-ball skills made him one of the more polarizing hitters in the draft. Now he’s a 19-year-old hitting .326/.360/.612 in High-A. He’s maintained his pre-draft speed and is throwing better than he was last fall.
Oddy Nunez, LHP, Pittsburgh Pirates (Profile)
Level: Hi-A Age: 21 Org Rank: NR FV: 35
Line: 8 IP, 0 H, 2 BB, 6 K
Nunez is a low-slot lefty who still creates some angle on his stuff because he’s 6-foot-8. He commands a running fastball, at 87-89, to both sides of the plate, and his average changeup has similar movement. It’s rotation-depth stuff, unless Nunez’s slot and size prove sufficiently awkward for hitters.
Bo Bichette, 2B, Toronto Blue Jays (Profile)
Level: Double-A Age: 20 Org Rank: 2 (8 overall) FV: 60
Line: 3-for-4, 2 2B, HR, SB
Bichette wasn’t hitting for power earlier in the year, but he’s done more of it lately and his slugging percentage is up to .458. He hit last night’s homer out the opposite way.
Omar Cruz, LHP, San Diego Padres (Profile)
Level: Complex-level Age: 19 Org Rank: NR FV: 35
Line: 4 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 0 R, 10 K
Cruz is a 6-foot lefty with a lower arm slot and advanced control of a 90-92 mph fastball. He also has an average curveball, which he can throw for strikes. That has largely been enough to carve up opposing hitters throughout his first two AZL starts. He works down with the fastball and the arm action is changeup friendly. He could have a mix of 50s and 55s at peak.
Colin Poche, LHP, Tampa Bay Rays (Profile)
Level: Triple-A Age: 24 Org Rank: HM FV: 35+
Line: 2 IP, 3 H, HB, 1 R, 3 K
Poche sits just 89-92 and has an above-average breaking ball. He reaches back for 94 at times, but on paper that looks like an up-and-down reliever. Somehow, Poche’s fastball makes hitters very uncomfortable and produces an elite swinging-strike rate. He has 78 strikeouts in just over 40 innings this year at Double- and Triple-A. He was acquired from Arizona as one of the PTBNL in he Souza deal, but a 2018 debut would require a 40-man alteration.
Eric Longenhagen is from Catasauqua, PA and currently lives in Tempe, AZ. He spent four years working for the Phillies Triple-A affiliate, two with Baseball Info Solutions and two contributing to prospect coverage at ESPN.com. Previous work can also be found at Sports On Earth, CrashburnAlley and Prospect Insider.