Fish on the Farm: The Return


Hello again! For the last month I’ve been standing on the banks of Lake Kauffman. From time to time I’ve dipped my toes in the water but have been unable to take the plunge and publish my first article here since November 11th of last year. Now, things have changed.

As you have read, Jeff Herr has moved on to head up our network’s KU coverage over on Through the Phog. His departure leaves a gap in the minor league coverage on this site, but if you’re a long time reader of Kings of Kauffman you may remember my days as this site’s lead. You may also remember that I spent a lot of time writing about prospects and the draft. Since leaving KoK, my nomadic writing tendencies have taken me to several sites, but at all of my stops I’ve tried to work in coverage of the minor leagues as it has always been a facet of the game that I love to follow and write about.

With the launch of Seedlings to Stars just over a month ago, I’ve been able to hone my content focus more fully to minor league coverage. So when Jeff notified us that he was leaving KoK and S2S to take a lead position, it seemed natural that I pick up the baton and carry forward the weekly minor league feature here on this site.

I don’t want to replace what Jeff had been doing with his weekly Princes of Kauffman articles, so I’m dusting off my old minor league column title Fish on the Farm and will be taking things in a somewhat different direction. What that direction will be exactly I’m not entirely sure just yet.

Over the next few weeks, I’m thinking of trying out a few different formats. Some of these attempts may wind up being published, while others may be trashed and never see the light of day, but eventually I’ll find a format that works for me and carry that forward. I hope all of you will bear with me during my trial and error and I hope that you find value in the content.

For my opening act, I thought I would start off by tracking the hottest* starter, reliever and position player at each level. In some cases I decided to add a couple extra players into the mix as “honorable mentions.”

*For RP I used the last 5 appearances, for SP the last 2 starts and for position players the last 10 games.

For Starters: LHP Mike Montgomery (22) – 11.2 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 12 SO

It appears Montgomery is starting to figure things out. On the surface the numbers still aren’t impressive (5.18 ERA, 1.46 WHIP, 4.9 BB/9, 1.57 SO/BB) but in 3 of his last 4 starts he’s resembled the top-20 prospect we’ve been waiting for. Regardless of how the rest of the season progresses, the dream of Duffy and Monty fronting the Royals rotation is far from dead.

Cleaning Up: RHP Jesse Chavez (27) – 5.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 5 SO

Chavez has 146.0 ineffective major league innings under his belt and is 27-years old and as a result he’s far from a prospect on both counts. With a 3.86 ERA, 1.387 WHIP, and 6.8 SO/9 in 39.2 innings he hasn’t been overwhelming closing out games in Omaha and shouldn’t figure in the Royals plans. Beyond being a serviceable Triple-A arm for the 2011 season that is. None-the-less, Fish on the Farm doesn’t discriminate and Chavez has been Omaha’s best reliever lately.

In The Field: OF Lorenzo Cain (25) – 0.406/.513/.656, 2 2B, 2 HR, 1 SB

Mike Aviles, Irving Falu and Johnny Giavotella have put up very good numbers in their last 10 games, but no one can touch what CF Lorenzo Cain has been doing with the bat in his hands. Currently, he has an 8-game hitting streak with 4 multi-hit games in that span. Now hitting 0.311/.379/.522 with 36 extra-base hits in 77 games on the season, he’s got nothing left to prove in Triple-A. Melky Cabrera has surpassed my admittedly low expectations in Kansas City this year, but it’s way past time for him to get out of the way and let the Lorenzo era begin.

For Starters: LHP Will Smith (21) – 11.2 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 5 BB, 13 SO

Honorable Mention: RHP Jake Odorizzi (21) – 5.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 SO – Solid Double-A debut

Cleaning Up: LHP Kevin Chapman (23) – 9.0 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 13 SO

Honorable Mention: RHP Kelvin Herrera (21) – 10.0 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 12 SO

In The Field: C Salvador Perez (21)- 0.364/.405/.515, 2 2B, 1 HR, 7 RBI

Honorable Mention: OF Nick Francis (25) – 0.378/.410/.486, 4 2B, 4 SB, 9 R

For Starters: RHP Timothy Melville (21) – 11.0 IP, 10 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 SO

Honorable Mention: LHP Noel Arguelles (21) – 11.2 IP, 12 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 7 SO – 4 earned runs allowed in 26.2 IP

Cleaning Up: RHP Edgar Garcia (23) – 8.1 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 9 SO

In The Field: 3B John Whittleman (24) – 0.355/.474/.871, 1 2B, 5 HR, 9 R, 7 RBI

For Starters: RHP Greg Billo (20) – 12.0 IP, 10 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 8 SO

Cleaning Up: RHP Chase Boruff (22)- 6.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 SO

In The Field: OF Brian Fletcher (22) – 0.351/.400/.811, 5 2B, 4 HR, 7 R, 12 RBI

Honorable Mention: C Travis Jones (22) – 0.364/.432/.485, 1 2B, 1 HR

For Starters: LHP Brennon Martin (24) – 21.0 IP, 15 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 0 BB, 16 SO

Cheating a little bit here and including all 3 of Martin’s starts on the season.

Cleaning Up: RHP Edwin Carl (22) – 6.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 13 SO

In The Field: OF Runey Davis (22) – 0.457/.558/.714, 4 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 11 R, 9 RBI

Honorable Mention: SS Daniel Mateo (19) – 0.390/.395/.512, 2 2B, 1 HR, 6 R, 8 RBI

For Starters: RHP Matt Ridings (23) – 10.2 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 3 SO

Cleaning Up: RHP Tyler Graham (23) – 13.1 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 17 SO

In The Field: 2B Jose Rodriguez (23) – 0.394/.500/.515, 2 2B, 1 3B, 6 SB, 10 R, 5 RBI

Honorable Mention: SS Michael Antonio (19) – 0.353/.452/.559, 4 2B, 1 HR, 6 R, 8 RBI, 4 SB


For more content related to the minor leagues, follow me on Twitter (@thebaseballfish) and check out Seedlings to Stars.