Aug 3, 2009

It's Hard to Say Good-bye to Prospects...Sometimes

Continuing with the examination of the Cliff Lee trade, here's the prospects that are traveling from the Phillies to the Indians organization.

Jason Knapp (P): An 18-year old pitcher with a live arm and huge strikeout potential. This is his first year in the full-season A level and has dominated. 147 strikeouts vs. 51 walks in 116 innings tells the tale for his minor league career. At this level, W-L record means nothing. Only stuff, make-up, age relative to competition, and a few key indicator stats can project a pitcher even to the AA level. A 2nd round pick in the 2008 draft, he still has a lot of maturation to go, and the risk of injury is still high (currently has shoulder fatigue). For the Indians, he was the centerpiece of the deal. Given time, if nothing bad occurs, he projects to a Roy Halladay type talent.

Known Rookie Card: 2008 Bowman Sterling Auto

Jason Donald (IF): A middle infield prospect (24 years old)that had been promoted to AAA prior to this year. Until this season, he had been a shortstop, but the Phillies organization shifted him to both 3B and 2B during the season (possibly for relief if there was an injury at the major league club). His bat stagnated in 2009, hitting .236/.297/.332. Otherwise, for a middle infielder he displays decent pop and respectable fielding range with some position versatility thrown in for good measure. He should be a useful piece on a big-league club as early as next year, assuming that this year's struggles are a blip (and they may be injury related).

Known Rookie Card: 2006 Bowman Chrome Draft

Lou Marson (C): A 23 year old catcher with average receiving skills, he has been blocked for a couple years. The Phillies prefer Carlos Ruiz's defense with the back-up being of a veteran variety. There is no reason why he couldn't be a useful back-up at the major-league level now. His bat has little power (even translating 2B to HR with minor league stats), but he has developed fairly excellent plate discipline, posting a career .371 OBP in the minor leagues. His situation has not improved as he is now blocked by Kelly Shoppach and the AA wunderkind Carlos Santana.

Known Rookie Card:2004 Bowman Draft, 2004 Bowman Chrome Draft (+ refractor parallels)

Carlos Carrasco (P): He was once the #1 prospect in the Phillies organization before the emergence of other prospects and the emergence of concerns about his mental make-up. He doesn't possess any overpowering pitches, but all of his pitches are above-average. His K/BB ratio has consistently remained above 2.4 throughout his career, but he gives up too many hits as evidenced by a career 1.33 WHIP. His K/9 this year of 8.8 also portends future success if the mental concerns are unfounded. He is still only 22, still young relative to AAA and a change of scenery may improve his prospects. I'll be looking forward to his major league debut.

Known Rookie Cards:2005 Bowman, 2005 Bowman Chrome

I would like to discuss more about other prospects in later posts.

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