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AngelsWin.com Today: Los Angeles Angels Minor League Hotlist

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By Tres Heftner, AngelsWin.com Columnist

Here are Top-10 Minor League Performers in the Angels Farm System

4/22/19 – 4/28/19

1) Jose Rojas – IF, AAA: 
The 26-year old infielder continued to build upon his hot spring with an even hotter April, slashing a firm .407/.429/.889/1.317 over the past week, driving in 13 runs in only 6 games, including a 2 HR, 6 RBI performance on 4/22 against Sacramento. Playing 3B primarily, Rojas also made two appearances at LF and one at 2B this week.
2019: .333/.388/.603/.991 with 3 doubles, 6 HR, 16 RBI, 7 BB, 12 K in 20 G/85 PA

2) Matt Thaiss – IF, AAA: 
Coming into the week, Thaiss was mired in a 3-35 slump (.086 BA), but the BAbip gods smiled upon thee.  Thaiss went 10-17 (.588) to go with 7 BB against 1 K over his last 25 PA, with a double and HR leading to his .588/.680/.824/1.504 slash on the week – boosted by a .563 BAbip. Thaiss also continued to see time at 3B, playing twice more at the hot corner vs. Albuquerque.
2019: .289/.406/.434/.840 with 4 doubles,1 triple, 2 HR, 10 RBI, 16 BB, 12 K in 22 G/101 PA

3) Taylor Ward – IF/OF, AAA: 
Ward added LF to his pro resume this week, making a nice sliding catch vs. Albuquerque, while also adding two more appearances at 1B. The increased versatility should boost his odds and value to the Angels as the season goes on, as could his offense, if he maintains it. Ward added 3 doubles and 2 homers to his season over the week, slashing .429/.478/.857/1.335 across five games.
2019: .305/.408/.559/.968 with 6 doubles, 3 HR, 12 RBI, 9 BB, 16 K in 16 G/72 PA

4) Torii Hunter, Jr. –  OF, A+: 
2019 is a key year for Hunter, still acclimating to the life of pro baseball, and the Angels pinned high expectations on the 24-year old OF by counting on him to help lead the offense at Inland Empire. While Torii Jr. might never have the game-changing power, defense, or baserunning his father possessed, he’s continued to make improvements to his offensive profile suggesting he might yet have a future as a 4th OF. Hunter slashed .333/.467/.542/1.008 over the week, adding a triple, a home run, 6 RBI, and 2 more SB to his season totals. Since the first week of the season, Torii Jr. has 12 BB to 14 K and a .413 OBP and his 15 walks rank third on the Angels farm.
2019: .250/.384/.338/.721 with 2 doubles, 1 triple, 1 HR, 11 RBI, 15 BB, 21 K in 23 G/99 PA

5) Cesar Puello –  OF, AAA:
While he may be walking along the precipice of being no more than a career 4A journeyman, Puello undoubtedly continues to produce. Seeing time at all three positions in the outfield, the 28-year old Puello continues to demonstrate advanced plate discipline to go with good contact and good power, drawing 4 BB, hitting three doubles, and adding one HR to give him a slash of .429/.571/.714/1.286 for the week. While he may not see time outside of SLC, he offers some intriguing depth for the Angels if he continues to post hefty OBP results.
2019: .303/.465/.455/.920 with 4 doubles, 2 HR, 12 BB, 14 K in 20 G/86 PA

Honorable mentionhitters:
Gleyvin Pineda (IF, A): .357/.500/.500/1.000 with triple, 4 BB, 5 K
Connor Justus (IF, AA): .294/.400/.529/.929 with one walk-off HR
Jarrett Parker (OF, AAA): .333/.481/.524/1.005 with 2B, HR, 6 BB, 5 K

5) Kyle Bradish – RHP, A+: 
The 2018 4th Rounder has looked like a strong pick all season, and the past week only added to that excitement. The 6’4″ righty provided 4 innings of a 9-inning ‘no-hitter’; between starter Aaron Hernandez (4 IP) and Austin Warren (1 IP) on April 23rd vs. Rancho Cucamonga, and followed that up by allowing only one hit across 5.1 IP days later against Lake Elsinore. Over the week, Bradish held hitters to a .033 BAA, allowing 4 BB, 1 ER, and striking out 13 in 9.1 IP, and might find himself in AA Mobile before long.
2019: 1.80 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, .159 BAA, 10 BB, 22 K across 20 IP in 5 G/3 GS

6) Hector Yan – LHP, A: 
One of the Angels’ more intriguing pitching prospects, the 20-year old, 5’11” lefty flashed some of that brilliance this past week across two appearances, reining in some early control issues and striking out 15 hitters across 9 IP, while only allowing 6 hits, one run, and four walks. The Angels continue to piggyback their young starters, as Yan closed out the game on 4/22 with four scoreless innings before a more traditional start later in the week on 4/28.
2019: 4.82 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, .242 BAA ,12 BB, 26 K across 18.2 IP in 5 G/3 GS

7) Jeremy Beasley – RHP, AA: 
Never considered a top prospect, Beasley continues to will his way into the discussion and might find himself entering the fray for the SLC-Anaheim shuttlebefore long. Like Yan, Beasley appeared in two games this week, starting one and closing out another, striking out 13 across 10 IP, only allowing 1 run, 5 hits, and 2 walks along the way. Only 23, the 30th round draft pick out of Clemson back in 2017 continues to prove his mettle.
2019: 3.48 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, .197 BAA, 9 BB, 26 K across 20.2 IP in 5 G/4 GS

8 ) Cole Duensing – RHP, A:  
While he flashed some potential in 2016 after being selected by the Angels in the 6th round, the 6’4″ RHP had a future in doubt following 9.74 ERA over 28 games and 93.2 IP in 2017-2018, a stretch where he allowed a staggering 136 hits, 21 HR, 102 runs, 58 walks, and only 64 strikeouts. 2019 has been entirely different, as the 21-year old Duensing continued to add to a solid turnaround year by posting a 1.86 ERA, .176 BAA over 9.2 IP, allowing only 6 hits, 2 walks, and striking out 11.
2019: 2.11 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, .240 BAA ,14 BB, 20 K across 21.1 IP in 5 G/4 GS

9) Jorge Tavarez – RHP, A+: 
The diminutive (5’10”, 150) reliever was lights-out last season, and it’s continued into 2019. Over the last week, Tavarez made three appearances, all for multi-innings, and delivered 7 innings of spectacular relief, allowing one run, zero walks, only three hits, and striking out 12. Blessed with an above-average 12-6 curveball with elite spin rate, the 23-year Tavarez might be pitching his way into the Angels depth charts before long.
2019: 1.29 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, .196 BAA, 4 BB, 21 K across 14 IP in 9 G

10) Adrian De Horta – RHP, AA: 
Signed as a minor league free agent in March 2018, De Horta didn’t show much last year, but opened eyes with a gutsy appearance in this year’s ST exhibition series against the Dodgers, and he’s followed up on that with a strong April, capped by a solid start on 4/24 vs. Pensacola, allowing one hit and striking out 7 across five innings. As the Angels continue to promote arms, De Horta could be in AAA Salt Lake before long.
2019: 2.03 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, .156 BAA, 8 BB, 23 K across 13.1 IP in 3 G/2 GS

Honorable mentionhitters:
Oliver Ortega (RHP, A+) 4 IP, 2 H, ER, 3 BB, 9 K
Aaron Hernandez (RHP, A+): 4 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 5 K
Luis Madero, RHP, A+/AA): 9 IP, 10 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 12 K, and a promotion to AA Mobile
Cristopher MolinaRHP, A): 4.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 7 K

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Great job!!

Really encouraged by what we've seen from de Horta, Deunsing and Bradish.  We've got some lively arms that were acquired for relatively cheap.  They aren't top prospects, but ina  couple of years, they'll be the depth any team needs. 

Really looking forward to seeing a healthy Jo Adell grace this list with his presence. 

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Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Second Base said:

Great job!!

Really encouraged by what we've seen from de Horta, Deunsing and Bradish.  We've got some lively arms that were acquired for relatively cheap.  They aren't top prospects, but ina  couple of years, they'll be the depth any team needs. 

Really looking forward to seeing a healthy Jo Adell grace this list with his presence. 

The other good thing about having a stable of intriguing arms like De Horta, Beasley, Ball, Pina, Molina, Duensing is that even if they don't really play up to being top prospect material, or don't quite have the ceiling/potential to match their solid MILB results, is that they're the perfect currency for midseason trades (when you have enough of them). Being able to deal from that pool keeps you from having to deal from the Rodriguez, Canning, Suarez, Yan, Soriano, etc. types.

Edited by totdprods

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Someone just asked me if I had heard of Adrian De Horta last week.  His brother works at INO and we had a company softball tournament and we played against his brothers team.  Kinda cool to see his name pop up here.  

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5 minutes ago, totdprods said:

The other good thing about having a stable of intriguing arms like De Horta, Beasley, Ball, Pina, Molina, Duensing is that even if they don't really play up to being top prospect material, or don't quite have the ceiling/potential to match their solid MILB results, is that they're the perfect currency for midseason trades. Being able to deal from that pool keeps you from having to deal from the Rodriguez, Canning, Suarez, Yan, Soriano, etc. types.

I think Beasley has a real shot. I saw him pitch in ST and while he got lit up, I was encouraged by a 96 MPH fastball and really good splitter. Worst case scenario, he could be yet another back end of the bullpen option late. 

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16 minutes ago, Chuckster70 said:

I think Beasley has a real shot. I saw him pitch in ST and while he got lit up, I was encouraged by a 96 MPH fastball and really good splitter. Worst case scenario, he could be yet another back end of the bullpen option late. 

Beasley, Ball, De Horta, Ortega...they all strike me as being a certain type of minor league pitcher. A guy who never really was expected to be anything - neither as a minor leaguer or a major leaguer - but they just simply keep producing until they get a chance and go one of two ways - they make it and again, just keep producing, like our boy Shoemaker (or even Matt Palmer) or they don’t, but keep producing in the minors consistently and well, like Drew Rucinski or Forrest Snow, and thus always have a shot and turn in long minor league careers.

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Pat Sandoval trying to get on the list next. Hurled 5 innings of 1 run ball, striking out 7 today. Lowers his ERA to 3.60. 

The southpaw has whiffed 32 over 20 innings and opponents have hits just .187 off him. 

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CALL UP Jose Rojas NOW. 

This kid is amazing. 18 RBI in his last 9 games, including 4 tonight. Two of which were of the walk off variety in the bottom of the 9th. 

Rojas has power to all fields and really sprays the ball to all fields. Really love what I've seen in watching him play this spring and with the Bees.

Walsh got two hits and the W. Yes, he DH'd the game and pitched in the 9th so he won the game. lol

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1 hour ago, Chuckster70 said:

CALL UP Jose Rojas NOW. 

This kid is amazing. 18 RBI in his last 9 games, including 4 tonight. Two of which were of the walk off variety in the bottom of the 9th. 

Rojas has power to all fields and really sprays the ball to all fields. Really love what I've seen in watching him play this spring and with the Bees.

Walsh got two hits and the W. Yes, he DH'd the game and pitched in the 9th so he won the game. lol

Being an infielder, who do we send down?  La Stella?  Fletcher?  Rengifro?

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8 hours ago, stormngt said:

Being an infielder, who do we send down?  La Stella?  Fletcher?  Rengifro?

Bourjos aside, who do we cut from the 40-man is just as tough a question. Keep in mind we will need spots on the 40 for when Upton, Middleton, and Ramirez return as well, all could be possible in June/July. 

I don’t think they can risk cutting Bourjos yet, not with Hermosillo and Adell still out. Rojas, Ward, Rengifo, and Fletcher aren’t really true outfield depth. Puello and Parker would require a 40-man spot if added and both are out of options so we’d risk losing depth when Upton returns there as well. 

Hermosillo being out is really hurting his opportunity and causing a lot of roster inflexibility.

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