This post is #4 in a series of 6 honorable mention groups. Here are the first three, in case you missed them:
This is one of the shorter lists, as there aren’t really a ton of lefties to go around. But let me tell you, the Giants are loaded with southpaws right now. There are 17 total among the 100 (including the 4 honorable mention draftees and 8 in the top 50), and that doesn’t include Eric Surkamp and Mike Kickham. Frankly, I think the Giants are going to get some solid pitchers out of that crop when it’s all said and done… and one of them may even come from the group listed here. This is probably my favorite honorable mention group, so I hope you take a little time to learn more about these guys (if you don’t already), as I did. Will any of them have enough to make it at the upper levels? We may not know that answer for a couple years, but I’ll certainly be keeping a close eye on them in the meantime.
Luis Ysla | LHP, 21 yo, 6-1, 185 | IFA 2012 VZ | (AZL) 12 GS, 51 IP, 2.65 ERA, 38 H, 13 BB, 52 K
Venezuelan lefty came out of nowhere to lead a juggernaut Giants team that won the AZL title this summer. There’s very little information about him out there right now, but he seems to know what he’s doing on the mound. I’ll call him a sleeper for now, and hope that he sneaks into Augusta’s rotation next year.
Joseph Kurrasch | LHP, 22 yo, 6-0, 205 | 2012 Draft – 8 | (A-, A) 16 G, 12 GS, 59.1 IP, 3.64 ERA, 64 H, 20 BB, 57 K
2012 pick out of Penn State who began his college career at Cal. Struggled at Salem-Keizer, but finished strong after a promotion to Augusta late in the year (11.4 k/9). Had a breakout start on August 25th, allowing 4 base-runners while striking out 12 over 7 IP. He’s got average velocity and above average secondary offerings from the left side.
Matthew Lujan | LHP, 25 yo, 6-1, 210 | Free Agent 2011 | (A) 15 G, 12 GS, 78.1 IP, 3.33 ERA, 77 H, 28 BB, 64 K
Lujan is one of my favorite players in the organization. The winningest pitcher in USF Dons’ history, he signed as an undrafted free agent after tearing his UCL during his senior season. Coming out of high school, Perfect Game raved about his assortment of secondary pitches. He’s not the most athletic pitcher, and he was old for Low A, but he’s a lefty who’s shown solid command to this point. He’s also a grinder, and I’d like to see the Giants make a spot for him in the crowded San Jose rotation next year.
Andrew Leenhouts | LHP, 23 yo, 6-3, 200 | 2012 Draft – 23 | (A-) 15 GS, 71.2 IP, 2.39 ERA, 68 H, 14 BB, 53 K
2012 draft pick out of Northeastern was a workhouse in the Salem-Keizer rotation this summer. Similar frame and profile to Eric Surkamp, but without the high strikeout rates. He won’t blow it by you, but he commands the strike zone well, and should battle for a spot in Augusta next year.
Carlos Diaz | LHP, 19 yo, 6-2, 175 | IFA 2010 Colombia | (AZL) 11 GS, 39.2 IP, 4.99 ERA, 43 H, 21 BB, 51 K
Young lefty was a horse in DSL at 18 last year, throwing 80 innings over 14 starts. His BB (4.8/9) and K (11.6/9) rates both spiked in AZL this year. I can’t find any scouting reports on him, but I’d call him a southpaw worth keeping in the back of your mind going forward.