Just one day after they acquired Shane Victorino to sure up their outfield, the Angels brought two more outfielders into the fold in separate deals. First, they acquired David Murphy from the Indians in exchange for infielder Eric Stamets. Minutes later, we learned they also acquired David DeJesus from the Rays for pitcher Eduar Lopez. Here’s the skinny on the prospects the Angels gave up to add these Davids into their outfield mix.
Stamets is a glove-first shortstop with very little power to speak of. He’s hit a weak .248/.306/.360 in Double-A this year, which is actually a modest improvement over his .235/.293/.314 showing from the same level last year. Stamets’ one strong suit is that he puts the ball in play quite often. His 10% strikeout rate is among the lowest at the Double-A level. The problem, though, is that those balls in play rarely result in good outcomes. His consistently low ISOs and BABIPs suggest he hits the ball without much authority.
Unsurprisingly, KATOH’s relatively low on the former sixth-round pick. It forecasts him for an unspectacular 1.9 WAR through age 28, which is slightly better than his 1.2 WAR forecast based on last year’s numbers. KATOH thinks Stamets is a bench player at best. The Mahalanobis distance comps agree. Other than Matt Holliday, who barely snuck onto the list, Stamets’ comps are almost entirely high-minors infielders. It’s also worth pointing out that Holliday is bigger, taller, and likely stronger than Stamets. Although they performed similarly as 23-year-olds, Holliday and Stamets are very different players.
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Statistically speaking, there’s very little to report on Lopez. He’s a 20-year-old in Rookie Ball, who’s still far, far away from the majors. Rookie Ball numbers just can’t tell us all that much about a player’s big-league potential, so the stats aren’t very useful for a player like Lopez.
Lopez’s strikeout rate — the one metric that is predictive for pitchers in Rookie Ball — sits at 22% over his eight starts this year. This is better than the Pioneer League average of 18%, but not by all that much. As a result, KATOH pegs Lopez for an unremarkable 0.8 WAR through age-28, which is up from 0.6 WAR in the preseason. His odds of playing in the majors ticked up from 20% to 25%. He’s basically a lottery ticket, and it appears unlikely that he’ll ever suit up for the Rays.