Prospect three-day weekendby Jeff Moore
August 12, 2011
The past week has seen a number of big name prospects on the move, and some speculation that more moves could be on the way.
The Kansas City Royals called up catcher-of-the-future Salvador Perez, and for at least the fourth time this season declared that the future is right now in Kansas City, inserting Perez into the starting lineup, where he was promptly tested with an unusual number of pop-ups behind the plate. Perez is the 15th rookie to play for the Royals this season, tops in the majors, and is now the fourth seeing regular time in their starting lineup, alongside Johnny Giavotella, Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas.
Also ascending to the majors is Arodys Vizcaino, who will be taking Scott Proctor's place in the Braves bullpen. Vizcaino, who has battled injuries as a starter throughout his minor league career, was moved to the bullpen midway through this season to expedite his development, and to help keep him on the mound. If the move works out, the power-armed trio of Jonny Venters, Vizcaino and Craig Kimbrelcould be dominant this postseason.
Perhaps on the move within the minors is the Diamondbacks' top draft pick from this year, Trevor Bauer. Bauer has already signed and has been pitching at High-A Vasalia in the California League, which is not only an aggressive assignment level-wise, but an exceptionally difficult test given the hitter-friendly parks through out the Cal League.
There has been speculation that Bauer could soon make the jump to Double-A, a remarkable feat for someone who was pitching in the Pac-10 earlier this season. Not only is the adjustment to professional ball going as smoothly as the Diamondbacks could have asked for, but Bauer's propensity to throw high numbers of innings throughout college has allowed the team to let him keep pitching despite throwing more than 130 innings this college season.
The Diamondbacks don't appear to be fearing with Bauer what the Minnesota Twins now have to worry about with their top pitching prospect, Kyle Gibson. Gibson was recently diagnosed with elbow strain and partial UCL tear. He will rehab in an attempt to avoid Tommy John surgery, which would be a devastating blow to the Twins, who were certainly counting on Gibson as a part of their 2012 rotation.
Jeff Moore is the creator of MLBProspectWatch.com, your one-stop site for all the information you need about minor league prospects. He can be reached via e-mail at mlbprospectwatch AT gmail DOT com and can be followed on Twitter at @MLBPW