#4. Martin Agosta – RHP, 22 yo, Lo-A: Agosta was the Giants’ 2nd round pick in 2012. He’s another NorCal kid who grew up in Sacramento before attending St. Mary’s College, where he ranks 3rd all-time in wins and 6th in career strikeouts. He made 38 career starts for the Gaels, racking up a 3.25 career ERA. He was especially steady his final (junior) year, posting a 9-2 record with a 2.18 ERA. He struck out 95 and walked 27 in 103 IP. Agosta stands at 6’1”, 180 lb, but looks like a slightly taller Tim Lincecum in pictures I’ve seen of him. Agosta, like 2012 1st round pick Chris Stratton, works in the low 90’s with his fastball, but can pump it up to 95 from time to time. He mixes the fastball with a nice curve and changeup, and is pretty polished at this point, as he’s made evident this season.
After tossing only a handful of innings at Salem-Keizer last summer, Agosta was assigned to Lo-A Augusta for the start of 2013. In a year when the Giants didn’t have as much pitching talent in the low minors, Agosta and Stratton would likely have been slotted in the San Jose rotation. However, there really just wasn’t room for everybody. While Stratton hasn’t met expectations yet this year, Agosta has truly shown the performance you’d like to see from a top college pitcher playing in Lo-A. Through 14 starts, he’s 7-3 with a 2.18 ERA. He’s struck out 92 hitters in only 74 IP, though he’s walked 32. Aside from the walks, those are dominant numbers. He’d been cruising until recently, when he started going through some concerning injury issues. He looked out of whack in a start on June 22, and was pulled after one inning with what coaches were calling dead arm… That’s not good. After taking a couple weeks off, he returned to the mound for 4.2, but left with a blister issue. He’s now on the DL.
Agosta’s injury situation is definitely worth keeping an eye on, but if he can manage to get back on track before the season is over, he should be ready for San Jose very soon. The Giants are hoping he can be a middle of the rotation starter in a few years.