With the last few days being, y'know, slow news days and all because of the All-Star Break, we took up reillocity's idea to put together a Minor League All-Star Team. Yes, it is stacked. No, Mark Appel is not on it.
(All stats BB-REF)
C: Brian Holberton, Quad Cities: A- Stats: .305 BA, .374 OBP, .488 SLG, 17 2B, 6 HR, 21 BB, 29 K: Brian Holberton has had quite an impressive year after the only tool he really showed last year was his plate discipline. With the sudden drop in performance by basically every catcher in the system, Holberton ran away with this award.
1B: Jon Singleton, Oklahoma City: AAA Stats: .267 BA, .397 OBP, .544 SLG, 10 2B, 14 HR, 42 BB, 52 K: The stats speak for themselves: Singleton destroyed Triple-A. After a terrible previous year, he just came in, hit home runs, and walked a lot. That's what happens when you don't do drugs, kiddos. You make the majors.
2B: Tony Kemp, Lancaster/Corpus Christi: Combined A+/AA Stats: .338 BA, .431 OBP, .484 SLG, 23 2B, 7 3B, 6 HR, 34 SB, 56 BB, 44 K: Did you really think it was going to be anyone else? The dude's a monster, and is on track to proving he isn't a Lancaster mirage. It's not like Lancaster helps rack up the steals or show incredible plate discipline. He's like Altuve, but an inch taller and can draw walks.
SS: Carlos Correa, Lancaster: A+ Stats: .325 BA, .416 OBP, .510 SLG, 16 2B, 6 3B, 6 HR, 20 SB, 36 BB, 45 K: El Capitan. 19 years old and still doing everything, growing into that 6'4" frame of his, showing he can stay at shortstops, stealing bases with his smarts and then...ugh. Come back soon, Carlos.
3B: Rio Ruiz, Lancaster: A+ Stats: .304 BA, .398 OBP, .456 SLG, 26 2B, 8 HR, 57 BB, 66 K: Rio's been excellent thus far, showing off his power and hit tool, coupled with some pretty decent plate discipline. He's still 20. Don't forget that.
OF: Teoscar Hernandez, Lancaster: A+ Stats: .293 BA, .379 OBP, .562 SLG, 25 2B, 8 3B, 16 HR, 27 SB, 44 BB, 101 K: Springer-Lite is roaring through Lancaster right now. The K's, unfortunately, are included in the package, but Teoscar's tools are legit.
OF: Domingo Santana, Oklahoma City: .299 BA, .380 OBP, .488 SLG, 23 2B, 13 HR, 43 BB, 107 K: At 21 years old, Domingo is far from a finished product, but that doesn't mean he can't produce at the minors' highest level. The K's are a legitimate problem, and that showed in his minuscule stint in the majors, but the power that's always been there isn't leaving anytime soon.
OF: Brett Phillips, Quad Cities: .307 BA, .364 OBP, .498 SLG, 17 2B, 12 3B, 7 HR, 17 SB, 29 BB, 62 K: Phillips just hits. I love it. The guy's got a McCutchen-like body, and while those HRs may never rise out of the teens, triples and doubles are a very nice substitute. Bit of a K problem, but the bigger one is not drawing walks. He'll learn. He's only 20, after all.
DH: Preston Tucker, Corpus Christi/Oklahoma City: .282 BA, .355 OBP, .503 SLG. 22 2B, 20 HR, 39 BB, 75 K: Tucker mashed his first (half) year in the minors. He mashed his second year in the minors. Now he's mashing in his third year. He may have a bad "baseball body"...so just stick him at DH to keep his bat in the lineup. It's not a difficult concept.
BN: Kike Hernandez, all the positions, Corpus Christi/Oklahoma City: .336 BA, .379 OBP, .50 SLG, 20 2B, 9 HR, 21 BB, 28 K: Kike does everything right. And he does it everywhere. At every position. Because Kike Hernandez esta en fuego.
BN: Conrad Gregor, 1B, Quad Cities/Lancaster: .327 BA, .427 OBP, .522 SLG, 27 2B, 10 HR, 55 BB, 57 K: Wow. What do they teach these guys at Vandy, how to hit in Lancaster? The power stats may inflated, but that BB/K ratio is real.
BN: Ronnie Mitchell, OF, Quad Cities: .298 BA, .362 OBP, .529 SLG, 10 2B, 12 HR, 23 BB, 52 K: Fine,so 23 is a bit old for QC. Doesn't mean the guy isn't hitting. Which he most certainly is.
BN: Robbie Grossman, OF, Oklahoma City: .337 BA, .417 OBP, .497 SLG, 16 2B, 4 HR, 22 BB, 38 K: Robbie's hitting at AAA when he got sent down the first time was fine, but the second time, he was like a man possessed. He played 44 games there, which should be enough to qualify him. In my book, it does.
BN: Matt Duffy, 1B/3B/OF, Corpus Christi/Oklahoma City: .270 BA, .318 OBP, .449 SLG, 15 2B, 14 HR, 15 BB, 72 K: Duffy makes the last spot on the team because of his homers and because he did well at Corpus before being called up. He's struggling at AAA, but not so badly that he can't recover.
SP: Thomas Shirley, Corpus Christi/Oklahoma City: 2.14 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 1.9 BB/9, 7.8 K/9: Shirley has probably been, to date, the best pitcher performance-wise in the system thanks to an opportunity provided by...the tandem system! Hopefully, he adjusts to AAA, and gets a September call-up.
P: Kyle Smith, Lancaster/Corpus Christi: 3.22 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 2.6 BB/9, 9.9 K/9: The little righty has a great feel for the game. While he may not always be on top of his game, he usually is, and his pitchability as a 21-year-old bodes well for his future.
P: Jordan Jankowski, Corpus Christi: 3.53 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 2.1 BB/9, 9.2 K/9: Jankowski has been excellent this year, with his peripherals outstanding for a guy without much pedigree.
P: Michael Feliz, Quad Cities: 3.12 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 3.6 BB/9, 10.8 K/9: Feliz was struggling early on until a DL stint, after which he came back lights-out. His stuff has brilliant most of the time, although he is prone to be wild.
P: Evan Grills, Quad Cities/Lancaster: 2.60 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 1.2 BB/9, 5.4 K/9: Although Grills has never had otherworldly stuff, his control is obviously there, with a tiny 1.2 BB.9 to show for it.
P: Nick Tropeano, Oklahoma City: 2.38 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, 2.3 BB/9, 8.4 K/9: NiTro has been outstanding at AAA, due for a call-up sooner rather than later. His arsenal is limited, but he usually makes the best of it.
P: Luis Cruz, Corpus Christi: 3.18 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 2.4 BB/9, 8.3 K/9: Cruz is enjoying his first really excellent year in full-season ball, and at the age of 23, there's still a good possibility he could make an impact in the majors.
P: Josh Hader, Lancaster: 2.60 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, 3.2 BB/9, 9.8 K/9: Amidst a few bouts of wildness, Hader is enjoying a breakout season-at Lancaster, no less-and should be shooting up prospect lists. After all, he's a 20-year-old 6'3" lefty with filthy stuff.
P: Mike Hauschild, Lancaster/Corpus Christi: 4.16 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 2.1 BB/9, 7.8 K/9: Don't be fooled by that ERA-Hauschild has very good peripherals, especially that walk rate. He's an underrated pitcher.
RP: Tyler Brunneman, Quad Cities: 1.83 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 2.0 BB/9, 9.1 K/9: After losing a good amount of weight over the winter, Brunneman has been an absolute shutdown reliever/closer. Yes, I know, relievers are volatile, but...Houston's future closer, perhaps?
RP: Kevin Chapman, Oklahoma City: 0.82 ERA, 1.46 WHIP, 6.5 BB/9, 11.5 K/9: While Chapman is, like Robbie Grossman, trying to cling to the Majors, he still kept his ERA under 1 through 32 AAA appearances. Now, about that walk rate...