Names in bold were guys I correctly guessed in February.
Richmond – EL (AA)
C: Jeff Arnold: 26 yo vet plays a very important role in the organization. Fine defensive C, showed some nice power in SJ last year.
C: Myles Schroder: Versatile guy has played a lot more infield than C in his career. Hard to think he’ll spend much time behind the dish with this staff.
C: Eliezer Zambrano: 9th year in the system. Bat has never really developed, but he’ll likely fill in for Arnold from time to time.
IF: Matt Duffy: Excited to see him here. Turned heads in first full pro season last year. Great bat speed, underrated abilities as a SS.
IF: Mario Lisson: Offseason signee showed some mammoth power in the VWL. Good defensive 3B, former promising KC prospect.
IF: Ricky Oropesa: Looks like Ricky might see some time at 3B with Angel V. on the squad. Can he adjust to AA pitching this year?
IF: Skyler Stromsmoe: MiLB journeyman back in Richmond for 4th time. Literally a baseball Swiss Army Knife… has played every position (including pitcher) except C.
IF: Kelby Tomlinson: Former 12th round pick should see time at both MIF spots. Struggled offensively during his time in Richmond last year.
IF: Angel Villalona: Thought he might start the year in Fresno. Crazy power, but very poor plate discipline. His clock is ticking, so they could be aggressive with him.
OF: Tyler Graham: Montana boy returns to the Giants. Speedster that never put things together at the plate. Met his mom last year. Great family. Keep chasing that dream Tyler!
OF: Brett Krill: 2010 pick has seen offense decline both years since breaking out in S-K in 2011.
OF: Ryan Lollis: 27 yo CF is an organizational player, but seems to hold his own at the plate wherever he plays.
OF: Jarrett Parker: Parker made his mark on the final day of spring training, but returns to Richmond. Does he move up when Mac joins the club?
P: Kyle Crick: He’s the #4 starter in the rotation, but the obvious headliner of the staff. 3 potential plus pitches, but command is the key. Could blow the doors off if he can limit the walks.
P: Clayton Blackburn: Clayton “Old pro in a young man’s body” Blackburn. What more can you say? This could be the year he sees the K totals drop a bit, but I think he competes for a promotion to Fresno before the season ends.
P: Ty Blach: Getting the Opening Day nod tonight, a reward for a tremendous 2013 season in SJ. Was very impressed with him this spring… stock is WAY up!
P: Adalberto Mejia: Young lefty will likely be the baby of the Eastern League. Has the size and improving stuff, but got knocked around some in the AFL. How will he respond to experienced AA hitters?
P: Jack Snodgrass: Veteran lefty returns to Richmond after posting very respectable #’s there in 2013. Probably deserved a promotion, but will certainly help mentor this young staff.
P: Kelvin Marte: 8th year in the org for the 26 yo southpaw. Will pitch in the back end of the rotation. Has always shown above average command.
P: Austin Fleet: Fleet moves down from Fresno, and likely back into the bullpen after posting impressive #’s in his first stint as a starter last year.
P: Bryce Bandilla: Electric lefty and original “Dog Pound” member. Can he stay healthy?
P: Jose Casilla: Santiago’s younger bro got some good press in camp this spring. He’s a physical and mechanical clone of his brother, but his fastball isn’t as big. Still, he’s an arm to watch on this team.
P: Cody Hall: Another Dog Pound guy. Major breakout in 2013. Mid-90’s fastball, secondary’s are a work in progress. A solid 1st half could send him to AAA.
P: Edwin Quirarte: Former 5th round pick looks like he’s become an organizational player. 4th assignment to Richmond, where he’s been a reliable bullpen arm.
P: Phil McCormick: Late round pick in 2011 returns for 2nd season in AA. Good #’s in 2013, but walk rates were high.
P: Josh Osich: Another big lefty with heat and a history of injuries. Tore through the Cal League last year before slowing down a bit in Richmond. Should make a push for Fresno this season.
P: Derek Law: I was very surprised to see Law sent to Richmond instead of Fresno. It makes sense though, as he’s never pitched above High-A. If you don’t know the book on this kid by now, look him up. Filthy!
Analysis: Pitching!!! (Sorry, I’m trying to get this and a quick Fresno roster post up today). One of the best staffs, top to bottom, in minor league baseball. Simple enough?
Hitters I’m excited for: Duffy, Angel V, (Healthy) Mac Williamson… and Mario Lisson! Let’s see what that power can do in the tough Eastern League.
Not the best offense you’ll find out there, but the pitching should be more than enough to keep this team in the AA playoff hunt. Should be a fun one to watch… and their game tonight is broadcast on MiLB.tv. Good luck Ty Blach!