Forum Spotlight - Farm Bats In April

Don't forget to check out our message boards.

I thought I'd note some of the high points and low points for the first month. Palm Beach is particularly encouraging, with some very good signs from Memphis, too. I'm going to pick the top three good stories on offense from each team, with 2 slow starts from each, and an extra point or two just for the heck of it.

AAA-MEMPHIS

Nelson .387 OBP, .462 SLG Duncan .364 OBP, .533 SLG Schumaker .348 OBP, .471 SLG

Gall .286 OBP, .314 SLG Hart .250 OBP, .312 SLG

This is the first AAA action for Nelson, Duncan, and Schumaker. That all three are faring decently, at the very least, is very encouraging. Nelson's fast start has me particularly hopeful and looking for some of the more blackened crow. He's 26, but still. Maybe he's going to help our middle IF pretty soon. I am feeling less concerned about having a middle IF go down injured this year than I have been in a bit. Duncan is stuck at 1B. But at 24 (as of next Thursday), he's not at a bad age for AAA. It would be great if we could use him as trade bait for the OF prospect we could use, rather than, say, Wainwright. And Schumaker, at 25, is looking like he could help out as a 4th or 5th OF. He's solid on defense. It's worrisome that Gall hasn't hit since sometime late last year.

AA-SPRINGFIELD

Johnson .452 OBP/.385 SLG Boyd .376 OBP/.306 SLG Minges .413 OBP/.686 SLG

Gorecki .261 OBP/.257 SLG Moylan .278 OBP/.281 SLG

Johnson's out injured for a good while. But that OBP is awfully nice. He's been around forever but is still just 25. Maybe he has a chance as a backup C/3B. Boyd's OBP is very solid, though he's shown no pop. He's still just 23. Maybe a shot at a backup OF position? Minges has been around the block a bit. But he's still just 25 years old. If he keeps this up, I'd move him up to AAA to go with Schumaker and Gall in the OF there. Gorecki's slow start has to be one of the biggest disappointments thus far. Moylan is surprising, given his solid work in the past.

A-PALM BEACH

Ryan .432 OBP/.554 SLG Haerther .384 OBP/.590 SLG Parker .382 OBP/.455 SLG

Hayes .319 OBP/.241 SLG Santor .325 OBP/.375 SLG

Ryan might be the nicest surprise so far this year. I expected good things from him, but that's one heckuva stat to the season. His slugging is largely because of a good BA (.378) and doubles (10 in 74 AB). But I'll take it. Plus he's walked 7 times to only 7 K's. In 78 AB, Haerther has 5 2B, 3 3B, and 3 HR. Three triples already?? I don't think of speed that much when I think of him. He's drawn 7 BB to 13 K. And in 66 AB, Parker, too, has drawn 7 BB, to 16 K. Ryan is 23, Haerther 21 (turning 22 in July), and Parker 23 (turning 24 in May). Hayes is off to a slow start, but is still just 21. Santor's start really isn't that awful, but I couldn't find any other real disappointments here. Pagnozzi almost made the pleasant surprise list. He's only at .300 OBP, .295 SLG. But given his struggles at Peoria last year, I find that marginally encouraging.

A-Quad Cities

Shepherd .421 OBP/.379 SLG Mather .354 OBP/.674 SLG Hoffpauir .360 OBP/.397 SLG

Yarbrough .188 OBP/.295 SLG Lucena .077 OBP/.154 SLG

That Shepherd OBP is a very good sign. He's drawn 17 walks to 6 K's in 58 AB. Not much slugging, but after .295 last year at New Jersey, this is a hopeful sign. Mather's shown awfully good power. He's 22, so I'm hoping this merits a promotion to Palm Beach soon. Hoffpauir's doing about what he did last year, which is very solid. Yarbrough's really struggling, as is Lucena. Given that you can run Mather (3B), Shepherd (SS), and Hoffpauir (2B) out there every day, I start to think that Lucena might do well to head back to extended spring.


The Cardinal Nation Top Stories