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Angels Prospect Watch 5/11/16 - Pitching improving

Most of the prospect pitchers are coming around

Harry How/Getty Images

Given the injuries of Richards, Heaney, and Simmons - coupled with our already struggling offense, it's nice to know we have "some" talent down int he minors.  Time for another checkin.  Who's up and who's down?  Can any of them help out the team this season?  There are certainly more players with talent in the Angels' farm system, but this features focuses on our top 10.

The Angels top 10 list is according to Baseball America

"HH Grade" is my very unscientific opinion on their performance so far in 2016

2016 performances of the Top 10 Prospects:

Rank Name Position Team Level Notes HH Grade
1. Taylor Ward C Inland Empire 66ers A Adv

Ward is continuing to come around, little by little.  He hit another HR a few days ago and is 6 for his last 20, which is about as hot as he's been all year.  He has caught 45% of attempted base stealers, but already has 3 errors.

2. Jahmai Jones OF AZL Angels Rok Season starts in June -
3. Nate Smith LHP Salt Lake Bees AAA

Smith is continuing to lead the Bees at the top of the Pacific Coast League.  Last night he only gave up 1 ER (a HR) in 5IP and threw 44 strikes in 64 pitches.  He walked none and only gave up 4 hits. Smith has only had 1 bad outing this year, when he was knocked around for 8 runs on April 28th.

4. Victor Alcantara RHP Arkansas Travelers AA

Alcantara had a couple of good rebound starts on 4/25 and 5/4 but gave up 4ER and 7 hits in 5IP last night.  He did strike out 7.  He's had some control problems and has a pretty poor walk rate this year along with a .271BAA

5. Jake Jewell RHP Inland Empire 66ers A Adv

Jewell had his second really strong outing of the year last night with only 2 hits and 2 walks over 6IP, along with 7K and 0ER.  He's been beat up this year, but is showing signs of turning it around a bit.

6. Grayson Long RHP Burlington Bees A

Long is pitching very well and is racking up the Ks (10 of them in 5IP on May 1).   He has a 2.10 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, .205BAA, and 34K through 30IP.

7. Joe Gatto RHP Burlington Bees A

Gatto struck out 11 in 5 IP on April 29th against a pretty decent Fort Wayne team.  He's 0-3 on the season, but after a rough beginning has had two strong starts in a row now, which 1 ER through 10 IP.  He's pitching Wednesday night and looks to continue that streak.  Gatto is walking a TON and has 19BB in 29IP.

8. Kaleb Cowart 3B Salt Lake Bees AAA Cowart is hitting .324 over his last 10 games and has raised his average to .288 on the season.  He also has 11 walks, good for a .350 OBP.  He has 1 error through 151 innings. C+
9. Jaime Barria RHP Burlington Bees A

Barria continues to improve his season, if ever so slightly.  In the past two weeks he lowered his ERA from 3.00 -> 2.89, his BAA from .260 ->243 and has a 3-1 record on the year. He has a 1.11 WHIP and has only given up 1 HR and 5BB in 28 IP.

10. Chad Hinshaw OF Arkansas Travelers AA Hinshaw's must think he's in a strikeout contest since his K rate is still up around 30%.  He's batting .213 on the year and isn't going anywhere any time soon. F

Prospect Notes:

Taylor Ward will probably spend the year with the 66ers.  He's doing well behind the plate, but not at the plate.  Then again, he is known more for his defense.

Nate Smith is still killing it in Salt Lake.  His days there are numbered.

Most of the struggling pitchers on this list are starting to settle in now.

Kaleb Cowart is doing well enough that he will end up on the big league roster in September (or sooner).

Chad Hinshaw is not going to be on this list for long if he keeps playing like he is.