Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

Prospect Roundup: Games of May 20

Angels' Fletcher strengthens resume; Fried bests Stewart
David Fletcher ranks seventh in the Pacific Coast League with a 1.023 OPS through 39 games. (Asay Photography/Salt Lake Bees)
May 21, 2018

Theme of the dayTeens:Juan Soto's Major League debut with the Nationals, making him the youngest player in The Show this season, would have been the prime driver of the news on any other day. But Vladimir Guerrero Jr. did his best to wrestle back the "Best 19-Year-Old Prospect" belt by

Theme of the day

Teens:Juan Soto's Major League debut with the Nationals, making him the youngest player in The Show this season, would have been the prime driver of the news on any other day. But Vladimir Guerrero Jr. did his best to wrestle back the "Best 19-Year-Old Prospect" belt by going 4-for-4 and hitting a walk-off homer in Game 1 of a doubleheader for Double-A New Hampshire. He added another hit in the nightcap and ended the day with a .421 average, best in the Minors. More on the top Blue Jays prospect's big day here.

Who stayed hot

Orioles OF Cedric Mullins, Double-A Bowie: 3-for-5, HR, 2B, 4 RBI, 2 R, SB -- This is as locked-in as the No. 6 Orioles prospect has been all season. After missing the cycle by a triple Sunday, Mullins is 11-for-25 (.440) with a homer, three doubles, three steals and a 1/3 K/BB ratio through his last six games. The 23-year-old outfielder started that stretch with a .254/.297/.464 season line but has since pushed it up to .282/.330/.497 through 40 games. That slugging percentage is the highest of his career, and after Mullins (who is typically known for his speed) spent 76 games with Bowie last season, the Orioles might want to see how that power increase plays at Triple-A Norfolk.

Who needed this one

Cubs RHP Jen-Ho Tseng, Triple-A Iowa: 7 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 9 K, 104 pitches, 72 strikes -- Chicago gave its No. 11 prospect a spot start on May 8, only to see him give up three earned runs on four hits in two innings against the Marlins. He was optioned back to Iowa the next day. If Tseng wants to return for a lengthier period next time, he'll need quite a few more starts like Sunday's. The 23-year-old right-hander tossed his first quality start of the season and allowed fewer than four earned runs in a Triple-A outing for the first time since Opening Day. Tseng now owns a 7.01 ERA, 1.63 WHIP and .301 average-against in eight starts (43 2/3 innings) with the I-Cubs -- a significant change from his 1.80 ERA, 1.13 WHIP and .245 average-against in nine starts (55 innings) with the same club last season.

The unexpected

Cubs 3B Jason Vosler, Double-A Tennessee: 2-for-4, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 2 R, 2 K -- The Cubs' No. 30 prospect isn't going to supplant Kris Bryant in Wrigleyville any time soon, but at least for a day, he got to act like the 2016 National League MVP. Vosler, a 2014 16th-round pick out of Northeastern, put himself on the map last season with Tennessee, for whom he hit 21 homers -- up from just three the previous season. But what made Sunday's power show at least surprising was that he hadn't gone deep at all since May 3 -- a stretch of 12 games -- and that he entered the day with just a .187 average. That's now up to .197 with a .311 OBP and .417 slugging percentage. Despite his issues getting hits, Vosler now sits tied for second in the Southern League with seven homers over 37 games, and an improvement on his .212 BABIP should help with the average.

Best matchup

Max Fried vs. Christin Stewart: Fried has bounced all around the Braves system in 2018, opening at Double-A Mississippi for one start, getting a quick jump to Triple-A Gwinnett, moving to the Majors as a reliever, moving back to Gwinnett as a starter. He was even recalled to The Show for a day last week when Mike Soroka went on the disabled list. After all that transaction history,'s No. 80 overall prospect managed his longest outing of the season Sunday against Toledo, giving up three earned runs on four hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings. Along the way the southpaw faced International League home run leader Stewart (11) and had little issue handling the left-handed slugger, getting him to strike out twice and bounce out softly to the catcher. That may say more about Stewart -- that he's not fully ready to face a Major League-level left-hander -- than it does about Fried. The two sides could square off again when Gwinnett hosts Toledo from June 19-21, but it's anyone's guess where Fried will be by then.

Who strengthened their promotion case

Angels INF David Fletcher, Triple-A Salt Lake: 2-for-6, HR, 2B, 2 RBI, 3 R, K, 2 SB -- There's a temptation to find another teenager for this spot, given the day's theme, but the Angels' No. 21 prospect continued to look like someone who deserves a Major League look. Following Sunday's showing at home against Sacramento, Fletcher now leads the Pacific Coast League with 61 hits, 18 doubles and 104 total bases. He's also posted a .361/.408/.615 line and has walked more (12) than he's struck out through 39 games. All that said, there isn't an obvious route to get the 23-year-old infielder to Anaheim. He's played primarily at shortstop, but Andrelton Simmons is in the midst of his best hitting season in the Majors, not to mention his all-world defensive work. Ian Kinsler is struggling at second base, but the Halos might have a long leash with the 35-year-old after trading for him in the offseason. Still, it's worth noting that Fletcher got the start at second for the Bees on Sunday -- his ninth time there this season. 

Others of note

Angels OF Jo Adell, Class A Burlington: 1-for-3, HR, RBI, R, BB, K, CS -- The Angels' top prospect went deep for the fifth time in his last six games. He homered only once in his 19 previous games, though this power surge has come after he took some time off to heal an injured thumb.
D-backs SS Jasrado Chisholm, Class A Kane County: 1-for-3, HR, RBI, R, BB, K -- The D-backs' No. 3 prospect homered twice Saturday and added another dinger a day later. After going deep only once in 29 games with Kane County in 2017, he now has seven homers in his first 28 games back with the Cougars. The 20-year-old shortstop is hitting .277/.352/.580 on the season.
Padres LHP Logan Allen, Double-A San Antonio: 6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 12 K, 102 pitches, 72 strikes -- San Diego's No. 8 prospect set a new career high his dozen punchouts at Midland. He leads the Texas League with 63 K's in 54 1/3 innings and sports a 3.15 ERA and 1.29 WHIP.

Sam Dykstra is a reporter for Follow and interact with him on Twitter, @SamDykstraMiLB.