Young Arms and a Thumping Bat

Seems to me that Seedlings to Stars writer Nathaniel Stoltz has a bit of a crush on the Reds farm system. He’s not the only one. A lot of Reds fans are excited about the promising future that is currently taking residence on the rosters within the organization. Not a bad deal, is it?

Not at all. Stoltz recently published two posts where he looks at some promising players that are under the Reds banner. One post looks at the up-and-down seasons of some of the promising arms. He focuses on those that had lofty expectations coming into 2011. I’ll let Nathaniel list the names for you…

Entering 2011, the Cincinnati Reds had one of the more bottom-heavy collections of minor league pitching, in that almost all of the starting pitchers in their system that projected as possible impact guys had spent 2010 in short-season ball. Kyle Lotzkar, Ismael Guillon, Wes Mugarian, Jonathan Correa, and Mitchell Clarke headlined the class.

But the season has not been all it was supposed to be for these guys…

One name Stoltz mentions is that of Jonathan Correa.

Correa, meanwhile, hasn’t pitched in 2011 at all, for undisclosed reasons. He’s just 20, so if he doesn’t pitch this year, it’s not the end of the world, but still, it’s never good for a prospect to lose a season.

Correa has yet to take the mound this season and has been placed on the disqualified list. The latest event transpired in mid-June. Apparently, this is not the first time the youngster has seen his name on this list.

There are some good (but too brief) highlights here in the names of Josh Ravin (Bakersfield), Josh Smith (Dayton), and Daniel Corcino (Dayton). You can check out Stoltz’s post here.

Stoltz also produces his own list of prospects that have had an outstanding first-half of 2011. The one name among the Reds guys: Devon Mesoraco. And I fell Nathaniel is developing a bigger liking to Mesoraco…with good reason, too.

Mesoraco’s certainly a better prospect than [Bryce] Massanari [of the Rockies], but this is about performance, and his numbers–.309/.387/.517–aren’t quite at that level. But he’s not in an easy offensive environment, and any catcher who can post an OPS north of .900 is among the elites at that position.

A lot of Reds fans have been clambering for Mesoraco to get the callup since, oh, about May…at least!

Mesoraco was the only Reds prospect to make the list which can be found here. Keep this in mind as you read the post. Stoltz encompasses all of the minor leagues with this one. Just because you don’t see names like Zack Cozart, Dave Sappelt, and Yasmani Grandal does not mean Stoltz has an unfavorable opinion of them. Same to be said about his posts featuring the best first-half pitching performances where no Reds prospects are mentioned. These posts are strictly number-driven.

Wait. Doesn’t Josh Smith qualify? 6th in MWL in ERA (1.91), Tied for MWL lead in wins (8), 2nd in SO (99 – behind Dragons teammate Daniel Renken. In fact, Dayton also has the MWL’s #3 in SO in Daniel Corcino), 3rd in WHIP (0.93), and the 99/16 SO/BB ratio is nuts.

I hope you enjoy these. I’m sure we’ll see more down the pike about these Reds farmhands and maybe even a few more from Stoltz.