by Tyler Radecki, Staff Writer

Syracuse Chiefs, AAA International League (23-31)

Pitching Report:

Ross Detwiler: He finally put a terrible, terrible month of May behind him (8.70 ERA, 1-5 record) with his first start of June, throwing six innings of two-run (one earned) ball on Saturday with seven strikeouts and two walks. If he can pitch like May was just a bad month, he may find himself back at the top of the list of call-ups.

Brad Meyers: He had a blip on the radar this week, giving up eight hits and five runs in five innings on the 31st. He rebounded on Sunday, throwing six innings of five-hit, three-run ball with six strikeouts. His ERA is now at 4.19, but he still has 27 strikeouts to just three walks.

Tom Milone: I’m running out of things to say about Milone, other than that I’d like to see him get a call-up the next time there is an injury. His last start: seven innings, nine strikeouts, 5 hits, two runs. ERA is now 3.63, and he has 59 strikeouts to just 4 walks (he also have given up just four home runs this year). He may not throw hard, but this kid has done nothing short of pitch well at every level.

Josh Wilkie: He’s getting hit harder (.315 average against in his last ten appearances), but he’s given up just one home run in 23 innings and has 27 strikeouts to 11 walks. His ERA is down to 1.90 and he may earn himself a shot later this year, depending on what the team plans with someone like Craig Stammen.

Hitting Report:

Chris Marrero: Saturday’s Chiefs game was suspended due to rain with Marrero at the plate with the bases loaded, and on Sunday, Marrero crushed a grand slam to give Syracuse a 6-2 lead; they would hold on to win 6-4 but lost game number two 7-2 (Marrero went 2-for-4 with a run scored). He had one poor three-day stretch this week where he went 0-for-12, but was 5-for-11 in the final three games. His line on the year is now .278/.341/.415 with 10 doubles, six home runs and 27 RBI. He keeps hitting well, and he should get a look at some point later this year – even if it isn’t until September.

Matt Antonelli: He’s been red-hot in Syracuse, hitting .382 in his last ten games. If he keeps hitting the ball well and playing good all-around baseball (five walks in 13 games, two stolen bases), I’d bet he gets a shot in the majors eventually.

Jesus Flores: His average is slowly climbing up (hitting .286 in his last ten games), but he still isn’t drawing any walks (three on the year to 32 strikeouts). Jhonathan Solano has played well in Syracuse (.266/.326/.367 line so far in 79 at-bats), so Flores has work to do to get back into the future plans of this ballclub.

Corey Brown: Brown had a pretty solid week, going 6-for-20 (.300) with two walks and an RBI. He’s doing a good job drawing walks (23 on the season), but he isn’t hitting for any power (his slugging - .316 – is lower than his OBP - .326) and his average sits at just .211. Hopefully this slight hot streak this week will continue; he pinch-hit on Sunday and a drew a walk after going 1-for-2 with a walk in Saturday's suspended game.

Harrisburg Senators, AA Eastern League (31-23)

Pitching Report:

Brad Peacock: Another week, another great start for Peacock, this time a seven-inning, two-hit, one-run start with three walks and seven strikeouts. He has a 7-1 record, 2.03 ERA and 82 strikeouts in 62 innings. I’d bet we see him in a Nats uniform this season, even in September.

Hitting Report:

Stephen Lombardozzi: After slumping a little bit, “Lombo” had a good week, going 9-for-31 (.290) with a walk, stolen base, five runs and five RBI. He has just three home runs on the year, but his overall line of .289/.341/.431 is pretty good for a second baseman, and he has just two errors on the season.

Derek Norris: He had a very Norris-like start Sunday, going 0-for-1 with three walks and a run scored. He had a 2-for-5 game Friday with two home runs and three RBI and he continues to have a very patient approach at the plate. He may never hit for a high average, but his .379 OBP and .495 SLG on the year are more than acceptable.

Tyler Moore: He’s hitting .378/.400/.811 in his last ten games – yes, his slugging is .811. He hit three home runs this week with three doubles and seven RBI. He isn’t walking, but his power is very, very real. Moore was named Eastern League Player of the Week for May 23-29, when he hit .448 (13-for-29) with four doubles, three home runs, seven RBIs, seven runs scored adn a .897 slugging percentage in eight games that week.

Potomac Nationals, High-A Carolina League (34-22)

Pitching Report:

Daniel Rosenbaum: He pitched a complete game three-hitter Saturday, and his ERA is now 2.61. Given his age (23), he may need a new challenge pretty soon. His track record is pretty good in '09 and '10, so a stint in AA may be in order, though he’s not blowing hitters away.

Josh Smoker: He’s given up runs in three straight relief appearances, but his ERA is still at 2.18 and opponents are hitting just .200 against him this season.

Cameron Selik:. He threw his best start of the year Friday, pitching a complete game with seven hits, one unearned run and four strikeouts. He had one bad start May 13 (8 ER in 4 1/3 IP), but other than that has been very solid.

Hitting Report:

Eury Perez: He had seven hits this week to get his average back to .286, but he still isn’t walking much (OBP of .298). On Sunday he went 1-for-5 with an RBI triple and four strikeouts. He can fly, but he needs to work the count more and get on base.

Destin Hood: His best game this week was a 3-for-5 night on Friday in which he had a double and a triple. He’s hitting .281/.410/.500 in his last ten games, and his overall line is about as five-tool as you can get: .273/.377/.465 with 18 doubles, three triples, four home runs, 30 RBI, eight stolen bases. He’s quickly rising up the ranks of top prospects.

Jeff Kobernus: Pretty solid week with six hits, two walks, three stolen bases, two doubles, one triple and four runs scored. He’s hitting .289/.325/.421 in his last ten games, though he’s just 4-for-22 in June.

Hagerstown Suns, Low-A South Atlantic League (35-22)

Pitching Report:

Robbie Ray: Ray walked four in five innings this week, but gave up just one hit and no runs. His ERA: 0.38, which amazingly isn’t the best on the team. He and A.J. Cole are pitching far ahead of their age.

Taylor Jordan: The 2009 draft pick continues to bounce back from a rough 2010, posting a 6-1 record and 2.48 ERA in 10 starts. He pitched six six-hit innings Thursday, giving up three unearned runs and tallying five strikeouts.

A.J. Cole: Cole picked up his first professional win on Sunday, pitching five innings of two-run ball with four hits against and eight strikeouts. A year ago he was in high school and now he’s got a 3.42 ERA in Hagerstown. Definitely living up to the hype so far.

Sammy Solis: His first two starts of the year have been mediocre, giving up three runs in 4 2/3 on May 30 and three runs in five innings Saturday. He’s not getting hit hard (.222 BA against, 2.75 groundout to flyout ratio), but he has six walks in 9 2/3 total innings. I think his high ERA will come down as he settles in to the year and after a few solid starts, he should advance quickly.

Christopher Manno: He gave up his first run of the year on Saturday, and his ERA "ballooned" to 0.33. Opponents are hitting .102 against him this year and he has 44 K in 27 innings. Given his age (22 – turns 23 this fall) and experience (Duke grad), he has earned a call up to Potomac or, if the organization feels he’s advanced enough, Harrisburg.

Hitting Report:

Bryce Harper: He got back on track this week, but left Sunday’s game after getting hit by a pitch on the leg in the first inning. He seemed to be fine after the game, so there shouldn’t be much to worry about. He hit his first career walk-off home run this week, and he had a monster week: 10-for-19 with two home runs, one double, six RBI and six walks in a span of five days. He’s got 13 home runs and 41 RBI on the season as well as a .338/.432/.610 line (and 12 stolen bases), so it’s safe to say he can hit low-A pitching. I’d expect him to get a call-up to Potomac by the middle of July.

David Freitas: This kid is a sleeper prospect if I’ve ever seen one. Wilson Ramos and Derek Norris are the “future” behind the plate, but Freitas will be getting a lot of attention very soon (in fact, I’d be willing to bet he’s a trade piece if the Nats are looking for a CF/leadoff man this offseason). He had two RBIs on Sunday afternoon, raising his total to 39 on the season. His line: .283/.397/.461 with more walks (30) than strikeouts (27). He had a big day on Wednesday, going 3-for-5 with two doubles.
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Pitcher to Watch: Tom Milone. He’s pitched well at every level so far in the minors, and his strikeout to walk ratio is video-game like (much like Brad Meyers). He doesn’t throw heat, but he gets batters out and doesn’t walk many: a definite way to keep runs off the board.

Hitter to Watch: David Freitas. This catcher has been raking all season long, and he has power, patience, and the ability to hit for contact. It’s just low-A ball, but the 2010 15th-rounder from the University of Hawaii may be called up to Potomac soon – he is 22 years old.

2 comments

  1. PMason // June 6, 2011 at 1:08 PM  

    Nice to see so many promising youngsters down on the farm for a change.
    Rizzo & Co have to be given a lot of credit.
    How does Nats farm system rank?

  2. Dave Nichols // June 6, 2011 at 3:51 PM  

    PMason: i think most independent publications rank the Nats in the lower third for overall talent in the minors, but they've recently graduated some of their top young talent (Strasburg, Espinosa, Desmond, Zimmermann, etc.)

    as players like Cole, Ray and Solis develop track records we could see the organizational ranks get a healthy bump.