We’re just a little over two weeks into the MLB regular season, but there’s been plenty of action down at the farm in the Tampa Bay Rays organization.
Top prospect Wil Myers has been the talk of the town and Chris Archer has also drawn his fair share of hype, but neither of the two have had real intriguing starts to the season.
Take a look at five names to keep an eye on as the 2013 minor league baseball season takes flight.
It’s been a fantastic start to the season for hard-throwing right-hander Alex Colome with Triple-A Durham.
Colome, who’s considered one of the top pitching prospects in the organization, has allowed just one run over 16 innings (three starts). His line includes eight hits, eight walks and 18 strikeouts.
His electric stuff has looked dominant, but he’s going to have to cut down on the walks if he wants to make his big-league debut this year. Hopefully, he can rise above the cluster of talented arms in the Rays’ system and make a positive contribution to the bullpen as soon as possible.
Right-hander Jesse Hahn was a speculated breakout candidate coming into the 2013 after his success last year in his pro debut. Following Tommy John surgery which sidelined him for the entire 2011 season, Hahn hit his stride with short-season Hudson Valley in 2012. He got better as the season progressed, and clearly hasn’t cooled off yet.
Hahn’s made three starts of three innings each so far with Class A+ Charlotte, giving up just one run on six hits and one walk while striking out 11.
It really looks like it could the beginning of a big breakout year for the 23-year-old right-hander.
Catcher Alejandro Segovia is another player who is worthy of the breakout prospect discussion.
The 22-year-0ld Venezuelan native is batting .286/.333/.619 with four home runs and 10 RBI through 12 games. His exciting power is definitely something to watch as the season progresses.
Talent at the catching position is something that the Rays organization lacks, so Segovia emerging as a top prospect would be huge.
Alex Torres’ name kinda got lost in the mix last year after an atrocious year with Durham. Again with the Bulls in 2013, the 25-year-old southpaw looks to be turning things around so far.
Torres has made two starts (11 innings), not allowing a single run while striking out 11 batters and letting up just four hits. Control has been the biggest issue for Torres throughout his entire career, which is why it’s both surprising and encouraging to see that he’s walked only one batter thus far.
Torres is a guy who already has some major league experience as a reliever, so if he stays on track he could possibly see time in the ‘pen.
It was a big year for Jeff Ames’ development last season. The 2011 first-round draft pick had a outstanding campaign with Hudson Valley, and has started his first full pro season (Class A Bowling Green) off on the right foot.
Ames surrendered just two runs (both home runs), five hits and one walk with 15 strikeouts over his first three first starts (five innings each).
He’s a player with sky-high potential and believe he’ll shine this season in the Midwest League.