San Francisco Giants Top Prospects 2013, Part IV: 37-49
37. Demondre Arnold (RHP, 21). Arnold had an ugly 5.43 ERA in relief at Class A Augusta because he had great difficulty throwing strikes. He walked 48 batters and plunked another six in 56.1 innings pitched. However, he struck out 45 and allowed 55 hits, only one of which was a home run. He’s young, hard to hit and has a pitcher’s body (6’3″ and 208 lbs), but he obviously needs to develop command of his pitches.
38. Jesus Galindo (CF, 22). While he hit only .252 with a .641 OPS at Class A Augusta, the young Venezuelan’s .333 on-base percentage was pretty good and his 40 stolen bases in 51 attempts was even better. He’s someone to keep an eye on.
39. Jose Valdez (RHP, 24). This huge (6’7″ and 250 lbs) Dominican right-hander’s 2.83 ERA led the A+ San Jose Giants among pitchers who threw more than five innings in 2012, and he struck out 78 while walking 28 in 57.1 IP. His ability to command his pitches will determine if and when he makes it to the major leagues.
40. Ian Gardeck (RHP, 22). Last year’s 16th round pick, Gardeck struck out 45 batters in 30 innings pitched but also had a 4.20 ERA on 22 hits and 24 walks allowed at Class A- Salem-Keizer. He’s obviously very wild, but looks to have a lot of up-side for a college pitcher selected this late in the draft.
41. Chris Lofton (CF, 23). A player remarkably similar to Jesus Galindo two ranks above, Lofton hit .245 with a .655 OPS at A+ San Jose, but also had a .320 on-base percentage and stole 22 bases in 29 attempts. I rank Galindo higher because Augusta is a tougher place to hit than San Jose (Lofton hit .237 with a .323 OBP and .615 OPS in Augusta in 2011). Lofton was the Giants’ 9th round pick in 2010.
42. Christopher Marlowe (RHP, 23). Marlowe went 1-9 with a 4.20 ERA for the Class A Augusta GreenJackets, mainly because he had trouble throwing strikes. However, his pitching line (except for the walks total) was promising: 83.2 IP, 66 hits and 59 walks allowed and 86 Ks.
Marlowe was moved to the bullpen half way through the 2012 season and it seems likely the Giants will develop him as a reliever going forward. One concern with Marlowe is his small size (6’0″ and 175 lbs.). Marlowe was the Giants’ 5th round pick in 2011.
43. Juan Perez (RF, 26). The Giants like the former 13th round pick well enough to have him on their 40-man roster, but he’s getting old to be a prospect. However, Perez was one of the 2012 Richmond Flying Squirrels’ best two or three hitters, and he looks like a good defensive right fielder (he had 13 outfield assists last year and had more than two chances a game in right). Perez runs well but isn’t an effective base stealer (75 minor league stolen bases in 115 attempts).
Perez will need to get off to a great start at AAA Fresno in 2013 if he wants a shot at a major league career.
44. Charles Jones (CF, 20). The Giants’ 7th round pick in 2010, it’s hard to know what to make of Jones. In 67 games at A- Salem-Keizer, Jones hit .242 with a .351 OBP and .724 OPS. Not bad for a player his age. However, after being called up to Class A Augusta, he hit incredibly poorly: .093 with a .324 OPS and 44 strike outs in 86 at-bats.
Jones has tools, but his strikeout rate (221 in 611 at-bats in the low minors) is a cause for concern.
45. Bryce Bandilla (LHP, 23). A big left-hander (6’4″ and 235 lbs), Bandilla was the Giants’ 4th round pick in 2011. Bandilla had a pretty good his first season of professional baseball, posting a 2.78 ERA with 68 strikeouts but 30 walks in 58.1 innings pitched, mostly at Class A Augusta.
However, Bandilla also had injury problems in 2012 with elbow soreness mid-season and a season-ending ankle injury in early August. Given his size, one suspects that conditioning is an issue with Bandilla and that he will have to get more serious about his training regimen if he wants to make the majors.
46. Kendry Flores (RHP, 21) & 47. Lorenzo Mendoza (RHP, 21). I’ve lumped the two Dominican youngsters together because they’re damn hard to tell apart. They are 3 and a half months apart in age (Flores is younger), and they’ve played on the same team the last four seasons. In their professional careers, Flores has a 3.66 ERA in 211.1 innings pitched with 194 Ks and 62 walks; Mendoza has a 3.77 ERA in 226.2 IP with 181 Ks and 43 BBs. I could give your their 2012 stats at Class A- Salem-Keizer, but, needless to say, they were similar.
I ranked Flores higher because his career ERA is a little lower and his career strikeout rate a little higher. The only real difference between the two young pitchers is their body types: Flores is listed as 6’2″ and 175 lbs, while Mendoza is listed as 5’10” and 190 lbs. If Flores can put on some muscle weight in the next couple of seasons, his prospects relative to Mendoza might improve.
48. Phil McCormick (LHP, 24) & 49. Josh Osich (LHP, 24). Another two pitchers who look remarkably similar as of the end of the 2012 season, McCormick and Osich were born four days apart, and both pitched mainly in relief at Class A+ San Jose last season. McCormick had a 3.48 ERA with 54 Ks and 20 walks in 51.2 IP; while Osich had a 3.62 ERA with 34 Ks and 11 walks in 32.1 IP.
I rated McCormick higher because his 2012 was a little better than Osich’s, and McCormick has more professional experience, having pitched at A- Salem-Kaiser in 2011. However, Osich is arguably the better prospect, given that he was the Giants’ 6th round draft pick in 2011, while McCormick didn’t go until the 31st round. Also, Osich looks to have a better body at 6’3″ and 235 lbs, while McCormick measures in at 6’1″ and 184 lbs.