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Things We Love to See: July 20-22, 2018

Great weekend for the future of the Marlins rotation

Miami Marlins

Weekend Top Performer: Trevor Richards, SP and Pablo López, SP—Richards was a big miss for me in my initial post and is a guy Marlins fans should definitely be focused on. Before he graduated from prospect status, Richards was ranked as the number 20 prospect in the Marlins organization and he’s been a very good addition for Miami since being called up to the big league roster. He added to that with another great performance on Sunday against the Rays when he went 6.2 innings allowing one run on three hits, striking out six. That was preceded by the best outing of Pablo López’s career when he went 6 innings allowing only one run on three hits, and also struck out six. The best part of Lopez’s outing was seeing him touch 95-96 with both his four- and two-seam fastballs, a step up from the velocity we’re used to with Pablo.

Guy That Needs a Big Week: Sandy Alcántara, SP—Alcántara is scheduled to make a rehab start tonight in Jupiter, and it would be really nice to see him put together a solid start or two before returning to the big league roster. I wouldn’t expect him to make a start with the big boys until next week at the earliest, but this week in Jupiter will be big for him as he strives to come back healthy.

New Orleans Baby Cakes

Weekend Top Performer: Isan Diaz—Before the weekend I talked about how exciting Diaz’s promotion to AAA was, and that it would be interesting to see how well he adjusted to pitching at the next level. It seems Diaz adjusted just fine going 4-9 this weekend with three walks, two doubles, a triple, an and RBI while only striking out twice in the process. This bodes very well for how Diaz will perform going forward in AAA and was definitely something we love to see happen in his first weekend in New Orleans.

Guy That Needs a Big Week: Zac Gallen, SP—While Gallen picked up a quality start on Saturday (6 or more innings and 3 or less runs), he only struck out four and walked three batters. His walk numbers have been up recently and they’ve paired with a decrease in strikeout numbers as well. He continues to not allow many runs and eat innings in games, but if Gallen wants to make it to Miami before September, he’s gonna have to be a little more effective at striking guys out and keeping them off the base paths.

Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp

Weekend Top Performer: Robert Dugger, SP—Dugger jumped into the Marlins Top 30, currently ranked #22, after Trevor Richards graduated from the list. He got off to a nice start in Jupiter but has had his ups and downs since his promotion to Jacksonville. Friday night was definitely an up for him as he went six innings while striking out seven and only allowed two runs on seven hits. Dugger has had nice strikeout numbers in Jacksonville and that continued on Friday. It will definitely be something to watch moving forward in his progression.

Guy That Needs a Big Week: Joe Dunand, SS—Dunand definitely felt the wrath of the Budowsky jinx this weekend and took a few steps backwards after last week’s nice stretch. Dunand went hitless this weekend and struck out five times in three games, all in all lowering his average to .133 on the year. It’s time for Dunand to get it going in Jacksonville, and this week would be a nice time to do so.

Jupiter Hammerheads

Top Performer: James Nelson, 3B—Nelson was named to MLB Pipeline’s Prospect Team of the Week today after a week in which he slashed .467/.550/.800 with two doubles, a homer, three walks and seven RBI. He’s slowly coming out his slump to start the season, and his power numbers increasing is a major sign that he’s hitting the ball harder while his walks show he’s being more selective at the plate. These are two important factors for Nelson to continue his hot hitting going forward.

Greensboro Grasshoppers

Weekend Top Performer: Edward Cabrera, SP—Cabrera struck out five in five innings while only allowing one hit, one run and one walk in Sunday’s first game of a doubleheader. A very nice outing for Cabrera especially because he limited the walks while still having good strikeout numbers. He’ll need to start working on going deeper into games, but his performance lately is really exciting for his progression.

Guy That Needs a Big Week: Jose Devers, SS—It seems like every time I check the box score for the Hoppers Devers is going 1-4 and might add a walk every once in awhile. While getting a hit is never a bad thing, it’s been a while since he’s put together a two or three hit night where he goes for extra bases a couple times. His average has been hovering at .272 for what seems like weeks now, and I’d love to see him have a couple big time performances this week.

Rookie Ball (Batavia, DSL Marlins, GCL Marlins)

Weekend Top Performer: Jerar Encarnacion, RF (Batavia Muckodgs)—Encarnacion stayed hot with two multi-hit performances this weekend, and also added a 1-3 effort on Saturday in which he hit a three run bomb. His weekend line was 5-12 2 2B HR 4 RBI 3 R. His average sits at .343 on the year, and a promotion to Greensboro or Jupiter could be coming if he continues to rake.

Guy That Needs a Big Week: Will Banfield, C (GCL Marlins)—Banfield has been playing great defense behind the plate but has been just around average with the bat so far this year. He’s had a few nice games but it would be really awesome to see him go on a tear this week. His week started today when he had a double in his only at bat in a rain shortened game.