Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Prospects! part 11: Bluefield Blue Jays - Pitching

Gone, Baby, Gone: Kevin Comer, Joe Musgrove
King Scrabble the Third: Jeremy Gabryszwski
Griff:* Griffin Murphy
Keep your eye on: Alberto Tirado
Couldn't think up a catchy title: Alonzo Gonzalez
The Canadian: Tom Robson


In his first real season of professional ball, Jeremy Gabryszwski (he managed to throw only 5 1/3 innings in his draft year of 2011) had a very good season mostly as a starter for Bluefield.  He was very good at keeping the ball on the ground and limiting walks (only 4 in 46 innings), but Gaby will be 20 on opening day and needs to post better strike out numbers in order to really be effective at higher levels of ball.  At least that what John Sickels writes, who ranks Gaby as the 19th best prospect in the Jays system and wants to see the youngster's breaking ball develop more.
Photo: Yes. the 'stache is awesome.

LHP Griffin Murphy ( 2013 ranking = 17) has done enough in his first two years of pro ball to merit listing as Jays Journal's #28 ranked prospect (  Coming out of the bullpen (mostly) in Bluefield, Murphy was very effective, garnering 42 strikeouts in 37 innings while giving up only 24 hits and 13 walks.  Kyle Matte at Jays Journal thinks that there are some mechanical flaws in Murphy's delivery that will need to be ironed out but they like his raw stuff: an 89-92 mph fast ball (which could sit higher when he's used in relief) with good control but average movement and potentially average curveball and changeup.  Forecasters don't see much potential beyond a solid left-handed relief arm.

Alberto Tirado  is a very young right-hander that was signed as an international free agent out of the Dominican Republic in 2011.  He made his US pro debut in 2012 to excellent results.  Since he's signed, his fastball velocity has jumped a lot - from about 87-91 to the 93-95 range.  He spent most of the season in the Gulf Coast League but managed 3 starts (and 11 innings) in Bluefield before the end of the season.  Tirado posted outstanding numbers as a 17 year old in the GCL with a 1.08 WHIP and 34 strikeouts in 37 innings and will probably start in Bluefield or Vancouver in his age-18 season.  He is definitely one to watch as he rises through the system.

Alonzo Gonzalez is another pitcher who spent most of the season with the Gulf Coast League Jays before making 2 very good starts in Bluefield.  At the higher level, he threw 12 shutout innings, giving up only 6 baserunners (3 hits, 3 walks) while striking out 9.  His numbers in 37 innings in the GCL weren't as pretty, compiling a 5.15 ERA, but a respectable 1.34 WHIP, mainly due to his decent walk numbers.  His K% was only 14.3% in Dunedin though.    Gonzalez is a lefty who was drafted in the 18th round out of Glendale Community College in 2012.  According to the only scouting report I could find, he throws a high-80s fastball with a change that was his out pitch and a curve that he didn't throw much.  It's hard to say what the future will bring for Gonzalez, mainly because he's not really a "prospect" per se, although he may add fastball velocity as fills his 6'5" frame.  However, as a lefty, he could always find a niche somewhere.
Photo: Alexis Brudnicki

Drafted in the 4th round of the 2011 draft out of Delta BC, Tom Robson made his professional debut in 2012 with the Bluefield Blue Jays.  It's tough to tell anything from his stats, mainly because Robson only threw 11 innings, got hit fairly hard (2 HRs and 5 ER) but struck out 7 and didn't walk anyone.  I can't find what the injury was, but Robson was placed on the 7 day DL in the Appalachian league on July 16th, 10 days after his last appearance.


* Yes.  I'm simultaneously referencing Back to the Future II and Married With Children.

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