Minor Thoughts February 27, 2017 – Weekend Edition

I didn’t get a chance to watch this weekend’s games live so I am just catching up on them now.

Quick Thoughts:

  • The Clearwater gun has a history of being hot, but Ricardo Pinto’s 95-97 was a good 3-4 mph faster than where Appel and Rodriguez were. There is a chance he ends up in the bullpen this year with the Phillies starting pitching depth. Hopefully he it is not a permanent move, especially if he can find a good breaking ball. But, his fastball and changeup give him a chance to be an impact player in the bullpen.
  • Mark Appel looked good out of the windup, but he is not natural and very deliberate from the stretch, and it showed in bad results. We are still in February so it is too early to write it off as a continued failure, but for now it is still a problem. On the plus side, Appel’s velocity was fine for a first appearance after missing time to injury. His slider was particularly nasty.
  • It is easy to see why scouts and evaluators like Hoskins’ ability to hit over Dylan Cozens. Hoskins lacks the pure impact of Cozens, but his power has become undersold. His 38 home runs in 2016 is still probably the high water mark for his career, but he has a lot of strength and his homer on Saturday is not something you luck into. His 9th inning in double was in a great hitters count (3-1) and he turned on a ball in to the wall.
  • Pullin, Perkins, and Stassi are really making a case to not get buried. Perkins and Stassi are not major league starters, but on some level both fall under “this guy can really hit”. It remains to be seen if Mackanin and the front office will really consider them over players like Coghlan or a 3rd catcher, but we are nearing the point where the gap might not be enormous when talking about a bench role.
  • Crawford is really good on the turn on double plays.
  • In the 6th inning on Sunday, Roman Quinn’s speed stole third base with his speed on a single, and that allowed the hitter to take second. There is fast and then there is the pressure that Roman Quinn puts on fielders.
  • Tirado is not major league ready and he was wild in the zone. There is a fine line between great and unwatchable with him, but he is also only 22 and finished low-A so no reason to worry about him in two innings of major league spring training.
  • I had Cozens at 4.26 down the line which is 45 speed. He stole his first base off the pitcher and was easily safe. His second stolen base was on a strong, but inaccurate throw by the catcher, a good throw gets him.
  • I have no clue how hard Ben Lively was throwing, but his fastball is still very straight. His curveball looked sharp, he needs to continue to be able to hit the outside corner for strikes to lefties like he did Smoak.

It is really nice to see all the kids in camp. Even the fringy guys like Perkins and Stassi are replacing the retreads (even though Gomez, Nava, and Florimon are all present in camp). Some of the low level guys won’t be around for long, but they are definitely getting action early.

Author: Matt Winkelman

Matt Winkelman
Matt is originally from Mt. Holly, NJ, but after a 4 year side track to Cleveland for college he now resides in Madison, WI. His work has appeared on Phuture Phillies, The Good Phight, and TheDynastyGuru.