Cove Chatter 100 Honorable Mention: Los Gigantes

This is the first honorable mention post in a series of 6. The top 50 will follow the honorable mentions. For a more detailed overview of the Cove Chatter 100, check out the previous introduction post. This group, Los Gigantes, contains some of the noteworthy players on the Giants Dominican Summer League squad (If you’re wondering why Keury Mella and Gustavo Cabrera are missing, remember that this is only the honorable mention list). These guys are as far away from the majors as it gets for a professional ballplayer, but that doesn’t mean they have any less of an opportunity to make it… just long odds. Look at Adalberto Mejia… in 2011 he was the young ace of the DSL Giants. Just a couple years later, he’s likely on his way to AA Richmond. This year’s DSL squad was pretty darn good, finishing with a 45-22 regular season record before falling to the Red Sox in the postseason. I’d look for a couple of the pitchers to get a shot in the Arizona League next year.

Michael Santos | RHP, 18 yo, 6-4, 170 | IFA 2012 DR | (DSL) 4 GS, 19.2 IP, 2.75 ERA, 18 H, 6 BB, 18 K

Signed for $250k a couple of years ago, and has likely the highest ceiling of any pitcher on the DSL squad. Features a big fastball and (supposedly) a nice curve. The Giants have been working on building his frame, but he’s only made 4 professional appearances so far. If he can stay on the field, I can see him making big strides next year.

Santos Interview:

Nathanael Javier | 3B, 18 yo, 6-3, 185, BR, TR | IFA 2012 DR | (DSL) 59 G, 258 PA, .229/.603, 2 HR, 28 RBI, 4 SB, 12 BB, 43 K

Promising 2012 Dominican signee had a tough season in the DSL, followed by a 50-game suspension for PED’s. He’s not really much of a factor until he gets back on the field. Has good size and defensive abilities, but the bat will be a project. I had him ranked in the top 20 on my mid-season list, so this is quite the fall (and likely an over ranking on my part before). Age is certainly on his side.

Javier Video:

Reymi Rodriguez | RHP, 19 yo, 6-2, 195 | IFA 2012 DR | (DSL) 17 G, 2 GS, 46.1 IP, 1.75 ERA, 24 H, 23 BB, 49 K

47 baserunners allowed in 46 IP is pretty impressive in your first pro season, with some nice strikeout rates to boot. He should be in the AZL next summer. No scouting reports on him that I can find.

Luis Castillo | RHP, 20 yo, 6-2, 170 | IFA 2011 DR | (DSL) 27 G, 20 SV, 28.1 IP, 0.64 ERA, 15 H, 3 BB, 34 K

One of the older pitchers on the team, but a serious weapon out of the bullpen. 34k/3bb in 28 IP is pretty sweet, no matter who you are or what league you pitch in. Maybe he’ll get a chance to close in the AZL next year?

Kleiber Rivas | C, 18 yo, 5-11, 200, BL, TR | IFA 2011 VZ | (DSL) 42 G, 137 PA, .250/.728, 2 HR, 20 RBI, 2 SB, 19 BB, 15 K

Lefty catcher from Venezuela signed at 16 and had a fairly nice second season in the DSL. His low strikeout totals are impressive for a young player. He may not stay at catcher in the future, as his CS% was the lowest among all 4 backstops on the team.

Nicol Parra | CF, 19 yo, 5-9, 160, BL, TL | IFA 2010 VZ | (DSL) 40 G, 161 PA, .244/.727, 0 HR, 18 RBI, 20 SB, 36 BB, 21 K

Parra debuted very young at age 16, and has spent three seasons in the DSL. During that time he’s shown good speed and the ability to get on base, but he’s only logged 13 career extra base hits… without a home run.

Eusebio Encarnacion | RHP, 18 yo, 5-11, 170 | IFA DR 2012 | (DSL) 14 G, 10 GS, 68 IP, 1.72 ERA, 56 H, 12 BB, 49 K

As pitchers go, he’s on the smaller side, but a 1.72 ERA and 1.6 bb/9 are impressive no matter the size… especially for an 18 year-old.

Jose Morel | RHP, 20 yo, 6-2, 190 | IFA 2011 DR | (DSL) 22 G, 1 GS, 6 SV, 59 IP, 1.22 ERA, 48 H, 6 BB, 55 K

He was 19 years old in his second year with the DSL team, and for that reason alone many will write him off. But those numbers are impressive regardless. He made his only start in his last performance, and tossed a 2-hit shutout over 7 innings with 7 K and 0 BB. Maybe there’s more to this guy than we think.

Raffi Vizcaino | RHP, 17 yo, 6-1, 195 | IFA 2012 | (DSL) 11 GS, 47.1 IP, 3.80 ERA, 46 H, 17 BB, 41 K

Another very young kid with a mature frame and little published information out there. Looks like he’s around the strike zone quite often, as his walk totals are impressive for such a young pitcher.

Robinson Medrano | OF, 17 yo, 6-3, 180, BR, TR | IFA 2012 | (DSL) 40 G, 146 PA, .225/.550, 1 HR, 11 RBI, 7 SB, 7 BB, 35 K

One of the youngest players in the organization. Not much information to go off, but he does have good size for a kid his age, and looks like he might have some speed to boot.


Nathanael Javier

Org Pitching: The Rookies

As I said in a recent post, almost every player on a rookie league team is an unknown. Rather than listing every pitcher and his stats here, we’ll just highlight a handful of guys from the American (Arizona League) rookie team, as well as a few from the Dominican Summer League squad.

AZL Giants:

Keury Mella – R (20): 2.25 era, 36 ip, 10.5 h/9, 2.8 bb/9, 10.2 k/9 – Dominican righty has a good build, an above average fastball, and the highest upside on the staff. Very underrated prospect who should get the bump to full-season ball next year.

Luis Ysla – L (21): 2.65 era, 51 ip, 6.7 h/9, 2.3 bb/9, 9.2 k/9 – Arguably the staff ace for the juggernaut AZL Giants. First-year pro out of Venezuela, and very unknown. Moving up to Augusta next year?

Dylan Brooks – R (18): 6.14 era, 7.1 ip, 7.4 k/9, 13.5 bb/9, 9.8 k/9 – 6-foot-7, 230-pound Canadian was drafted in the 30th round out of high school this season. One of the youngest players on the team. Electric, but very raw stuff.

DJ Snelten – L (21): 1.57 era, 34.1 ip, 7.1 h/9, 3.4 bb/9, 10.2 k/9 – 9th round selection in this year’s draft. Was a top 150 prospect in BA’s pre-draft ranking, so the Giants may have gotten a nice steal. Throws mid-90’s from left side.

Nick Jones – L (21): 1.93 era, 18.2 ip, 4.3 h/9, 4.3 bb/9, 8.7 k/9 – 14th round pick this summer. 6-6, 220-pound juco lefty. Closed out a couple of games for the young Giants.

Luis Pino – R (18): 3.94 era, 29.2 ip, 9.1 h/9, 5.5 bb/9, 7.9 k/9 – Mexican righty spent last summer in DSL, this summer in AZL. BB rates climbed a bit, but he’s holding his own for a young kid.

Carlos Diaz – L (19): 4.99 era, 39.2 ip, 9.8 h/9, 4.8 bb/9, 11.6 k/9 – Colombian lefty posted very respectable numbers during 2 seasons in DSL. Impressive 51 K’s in 39 IP for AZL team this summer. Slender build, but another baby to keep an eye on.

Eury Sanchez – R (20): 1.12 era, 16 ip, 6.8 h/9, 2.2 bb/9, 14.6 k/9 – Between DSL (’12) and AZL (’13), he owns a 1.19 era and 14 saves in 45.1 ip. Smaller at 5-10, 175, but career 12.3 k/9 shows he’s got something hitters can’t handle.

Nick Gonzalez – L (21): 1.04 era, 17.1 ip, 3.1 h/9, 1.6 bb/9, 8.8 k/9 – USF (South Florida) lefty was a 24th round pick in June. Probably should have been in S-K, but the numbers are still very impressive in a small sample size. Another lefty with size.

Rayan Hernandez – R (17): 8.31 era, 8.2 ip, 14.5 h/9, 6.2 bb/9, 8.3 k/9 – Youngest pitcher on the staff, 34th round pick out of Puerto Rico. He’s a large kid (6-4, 230). Appeared in 9 contests without much success this summer.

Overview: This is only part of the crew that breezed through the AZL with ease this summer, en route to a shutout of the Dodgers for a championship. Performance-wise, Ysla was the rotation ace. Stuff-wise, Mella sounds like he has the highest upside. Those two should be in Augusta next year, but the Giants aren’t always the most aggressive with pitcher placement, so don’t be too shocked to see Ysla sitting out until summer ball. You can rank the rest of these guys how you see fit. There’s high school draft picks, college lefties, international babies… and a ton of height. Snelten could be a big sleeper if he continues to work as a starter next season. Hernandez is very young, and very large. Some of these kiddos won’t ever see AA, but maybe some make it to the show. You never know at this level.

DSL Giants

Michael Santos – R (18): 2.75 era, 19.2 ip, 8.2 h/9, 2.7 bb/9, 8.2 k/9 – 6-foot-4 with high upside signed for $250k in 2012. Made 4 starts this June before getting shut down the rest of the season. Scouts like his fastball/curve combination.

Jose Morel – R (19): 1.22 era, 59 ip, 7.3 h/9, 0.9 bb/9, 8.4 k/9 – Repeat performer in the DSL. Worked as a swing-man this year, pitching 3 or 4 innings at a time. Last appearance was only start of the year: 7 ip, 2 h, 0 er, 0 bb, 7 k. Hmmm…

Reymi Rodriguez – R (19): 1.36 era, 46.1 ip, 4.7 h/9, 4.5 bb/9, 9.5 k/9 – Pitched primarily out of the bullpen in debut season. Numbers seem to indicate he’s got electric stuff.

Luis Castillo – R (20): 20 sv, 0.64 era, 28.1 ip, 4.8 h/9, 1.0 bb/9, 10.8 k/9 – Oldest pitcher on the staff, and a repeat performer in the league. Impressive numbers nonetheless.

Eusebio Encarnacion – R (19): 1.72 era, 68 ip, 7.4 h/9, 1.6 bb/9, 6.5 k/9 – Debut season. Slender build, but put together a nice campaign as a starter. Impressive control numbers.

Jonathan Loaisiga – R (18): 2.75 era, 68.2 ip, 7.9 h/9, 2.1 bb/9, 5.2 k/9 – Unknown? His height and weight aren’t even listed on the roster! Don’t know how to pronounce the name, but a very good debut summer, albeit with very low strikeout totals.

Raffi Vizcaino – R (17): 3.80 era, 47.1 ip, 8.7 h/9, 3.2 bb/9, 7.8 k/9 – Youngest pitcher on the team. Saw his best (5 ip, 2 h, 0 er, 10 k) and worst (4.1 ip, 12 h, 8 er) performances in his last two outings of the season.

Overview: Other than the big-bonus righty Santos at the top, there’s really no way to rank these guys. Most of them have good enough numbers to earn a trip to Arizona next summer, I would think. Morel’s 2-hitter over 7 innings in his final appearance looks good. Castillo has the best numbers, by far, but he’s also one of the older guys on the team… how much that matters is up to you. If we’re going by physical attributes, I’ll take Rodriguez, whose numbers look very enticing. Remember, this team went 45-22 this year, so there’s definitely some talent overseas. Call me a year from now, and I’m sure a couple of these guys won’t even be making a dent. Maybe we get a couple of AZL breakouts in the group next summer, too?