2006 Ranking: 4
School: Houston High School (Germantown, TN)
Cardinal: Selected in the second round (65th overall) of the June, 2003
First-Year Player Draft. Received a $570,000 signing bonus. 2006 G W-L IP H BB K ERA WHIP
Jason Scott (7): Pomeranz moved down three spots in both my personal rankings and the staff rankings this year. He missed most of the final two months of the season with a left oblique strain and shoulder tendonitis. Opponents hit .282 against him in the Texas League in 2006 and he didn't fare much better in the Arizona Fall League following the season where he posted an ERA of 9.00 in six games. However, he is still only 22 and should be injury free heading into 2007. He definitely needs to step it up a notch in 2007 to keep from falling even farther down the list next year. His small number of strikeouts is most likely due to the fact that he lacks an out pitch, as you would expect more from someone as big as Pomeranz.
Leonda Markee (7): Stuart Pomeranz is my fifth-best pitching prospect in the system. However, his 2006 performance caused me to drop him from second in 2005 to seventh in 2006. After a strong finish to his 2005 season, 2006 was a bit of a disappointment. Other than a very good May, the stats for the balance of the season were not good. His home-road splits show that Pomeranz was significantly better at home than when he was traveling. There was a 60-point batting average and a 90-point OPS differential between his home and road performance.
Also, 2006 was the second straight season that Pomeranz saw time on the disabled list because of shoulder soreness. That is worrisome. What kept me from dropping him further in his youth and the level at which he pitched. Although 2006 was his third full season in professional ball, Pomeranz only turned 22 this month. The average age of Double-A players in 2006 was 25. While I do not consider 2007 a ‘make-or-break' year for him, due to his youth and second-round draft status, Pomeranz needs to step it up in 2007. He could begin in Triple-A with a good Spring Training performance but may start back at Double-A since he has not yet conquered that level.
Ray Mileur (9): Stuart Pomeranz started last season with a 6-0 run to include four quality starts in that span and was first six-game winner in the Texas League in 2006, before injuries sideline him for about two months.
Pomeranz was one of St. Louis' more promising prospects entering the 2005 season.. Promoted to Double-A Springfield that year, he initially struggled with his command and giving up far too many hits, leaving too many pitches up in the strike zone.
He appeared to me to have turned things around in '06. In May Pomeranz went 4-1 in five starts for Springfield, averaging 6-2/3 innings pitched per start (33-2/3 total IP). The 6-7 right-hander surrendered 12 runs (11 earned) for a 2.94 ERA while walking just seven and striking out 23. A good enough month for the Cardinals to name him their Minor League Pitcher of the Month for May.
He missed six weeks of playing time due to suffering a strained left oblique while taking batting practice before his scheduled start on July 5. He returned in August only to be shut down for the rest of the season because he was experiencing tendonitis in his pitching shoulder.
He played in the Arizona Fall League this off season and says he's healthy. He could start the 07 season at Memphis, if not, another good start for Springfield in April and May, he'll be promoted to Triple-A.
Brian Walton (12): The righty has been in the Cardinals minor league system for four seasons, but just turned 22. Pomeranz returned to Springfield in 2006, but struggled with injuries, including shoulder tendinitis and an oblique strain. He logged 98-1/3 innings, posting a 7-4 record with a 4.39 ERA. He struck out 64, but walked 30 and gave up 13 home runs.
The 6-foot-7 starter was assigned to the Arizona Fall League and was selected as the Cardinals' designated starting pitcher, but struggled especially badly in two of his six AFL outings, posting a 9.00 ERA overall. He fanned only three while walking eight in 17 innings.
Pomeranz has the height, but doesn't seem to use it to his advantage as much as he should. I know the organization preaches pitching to contact, but why aren't there more strikeouts? I am also a bit worried we are not seeing more progress in terms of improving command.
The refinement of his changeup is considered by some to represent his ultimate differentiator between continuing to start versus becoming a reliever.
STAFF COMMENTS KEY: Staff Member (Individual Ranking), NR = Not Rated
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