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  1. Depending on your age cut-off date AJ Jimenez of the Lansing Lugnuts put up a nice line as a 19/20 year old catcher. 347 OBP and 435 SLG.

    Comment by Gerry — September 10, 2010 @ 2:33 pm

  2. Could Mike Trout make his debut in 2011 or 2012 is a more realistic ETA? I’m really excited about him and his potential to do almost everything on a baseball field.

    Comment by kirakillers — September 10, 2010 @ 4:00 pm

  3. Worth noting that Josh Vitters managed to crank out 15 homers in just 269 ABs in the Midwest League, compared to Trout’s 6 in 312 ABs. Vitters’ .219 ISO from that sample dwarves Trout’s .164

    Not saying Vitters is the better prospect by any means, but he was just as young as Trout when he took the Midwest League by storm. If nothing else, this is a good reason why Cubs fans should exercise patience with Vitters, whose output in Daytona this year actually wasn’t half bad. People need to remember just how young he is.

    Comment by Virgil Pryor — September 10, 2010 @ 4:22 pm

  4. In the same vein, Ty Morrison also had a solid year. His contact rate needs a lot of improcement, but his speed was undeniable and over 1/3 of his hits were for extra bases. Edinson Rincon showed a good contact rate and power for his age. Frederick Parejo showed very good plate discipline while not producing very well. Rymer Liriano didn’t show much in games, but has big power potential. Jake Marisnick may be one of the best athletes, if not the best, in the Midwest teenager group.

    Comment by Matt Garrioch — September 10, 2010 @ 7:55 pm

  5. Does anyone know where I can find out what each environment for MiLB leagues are like? Or if someone could expand on each……

    And for Vitters: He is young, and does have some pop. But unless he starts walking at a higher rate, and start to improve pitch recognition, I dont see him as that valuable of a piece. Im not positive on this statement anymore, as he may have improved, but early reports suggest he is a avg. defender, at best at 3B, if not below avg.

    Comment by Justin — September 10, 2010 @ 7:59 pm

  6. Also, great read. Very enlightening.

    Comment by Justin — September 10, 2010 @ 8:00 pm

  7. Good stuff as usual Brian, one quibble though:

    “Snider’s season, and general lack of athleticism, ”

    Are we past this point yet? I know he’s not exactly lean, but he’s not Prince Fielder large either. It’s also been reported a few times that he was scholarship worthy on the gridiron, and I have hard time believing that anyone who was drafted in the 1st round, made a big league debut at age 20, and was worthy of a football scholarship, lacks athleticism. I’ve watched him play alot this year, as I’m sure you have as well, and while he’s not BJ Upton in the OF, I wouldn’t refer to him as non-athletic. His arm even looks above avg to me.

    Comment by melvin emmanuel — September 10, 2010 @ 8:19 pm

  8. No he wasn’t.

    Vitters was 2 years out of HS last year.

    He was a year older than what Trout is now.

    Comment by Ed Cunningham — September 10, 2010 @ 10:58 pm

  9. I completely agree Melvin.

    Calling Snider unathletic is careless.

    Not being skinny does not make you unathletic.

    Comment by Ed Cunningham — September 10, 2010 @ 10:59 pm

  10. Can anybody give me a website where their is a description of the environments of the leagues in MiLB?

    Comment by Justin — September 11, 2010 @ 1:16 am

  11. Justin,
    A quick overview:
    AAA- PCL is very hitter friendly, International is about even, maybe a touch on the hitters side.
    AA- Texas is hitter friendly, Eastern and Southen play about even.
    HiA- Cal league is very hitter friendly, Carolina is a touch on the pitchers side, Florida state is quite pitcher friendly
    A ball- Midwest is pitcher friendly due to climate, SAL tends to favor pitchers as well.
    SS- NYP depends on the players but plays even pretty much. Northwest is usually hitter friendly.
    R- Appy is about even. Pioneer is hitter friendly. AZL and GCL typically are pitcher heavy as are the DSL and VSL.
    There are parks in each of these leagues that play differently or against this. These are just my observations.

    Comment by Matt Garrioch — September 11, 2010 @ 2:31 pm

  12. “Not athletic” really just means “white” … or at least seems to in a lot of sports conversations.

    IMO, just pointing out the obvious.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — September 11, 2010 @ 5:42 pm

  13. Dunn went in the second round, made his debut at 21, and was considered an amazing football prospect. He actually showed a good bit of athleticism coming up, but we all know how that turned out. Snider’s issue isn’t his current athleticism as much as his future athleticism as he ages.

    Comment by Nitram Odarp — September 11, 2010 @ 9:04 pm

  14. Engel Beltre comes up a couple of times in your piece, Bryan. What are your general thoughts about his performance this year and what you expect next year?

    Comment by E-Dub — September 12, 2010 @ 1:21 pm

  15. In terms of baseball age, this is considered Jimenez’ age 20 season. Agreed it was a nice year, though.

    Comment by Bryan Smith — September 13, 2010 @ 10:49 am

  16. The Angels have told some people that their fans will see him in 2011. But I think his performance in Double-A next year will dictate that. He’s truly exciting to see on the field — from his build when he walks out of the dugout, to the raw power in his batting practice, to his home-to-first times.

    Comment by Bryan Smith — September 13, 2010 @ 10:50 am

  17. OK, lack of athleticism might be wrong — these are pro athletes, after all. What I mean by that is he is a bad fielder.

    Comment by Bryan Smith — September 13, 2010 @ 10:51 am

  18. I would have thought it time for a power boost this year. The contact skills have become really good, but without ISO or BB%, and with his baserunning still raw, I don’t know what he becomes. Next year is put-up or shut-up time for me.

    Comment by Bryan Smith — September 13, 2010 @ 10:53 am

  19. Franklin or Trout. Impressed with the fact Trout can steal bases and hit for a high average in Low A. Not going to get too excited about High A because that is a hitter’s park.

    But, Franklin is very impressive. He broke a 49 year franchise Home run record and is the homerun king of the Midwest. What an accomplishment for a 19 year old. And to also be the first professional player to hit 20-20-20 (hr, sb, and dbl). I also understand that the Seattle Low A affiliate team he played on has not been in the playoffs since Franklin was born. And, a side note – he did a decent job in Double A at the end of this year…Franklin’s my rookie of the year.

    Comment by baseball — September 13, 2010 @ 12:03 pm

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