Rafael Marcano might be adding a name to the list of pitching prospects to watch at Clearwater. A little old at age 21, but he is left-handed and had only pitched in GCL prior to this season. 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 8 K last night.
Adding the Michael Jordan tongue wag to his look on the mound:
I don't think he throws quite as hard as Jordi Martinez, another LHP on that team, but still in the 91-93 range touching higher. Solid control so far (5 BB in 20 IP in a league with lots of the automated strike zones), means he might be more a Ranger Suarez type. But looking at the big club this week - that is a good thing.
One other note for those looking at W-L records. All 4 of our teams are younger than average for their leagues, especially on the pitching side. We cleared out more non prospects than most organizations. A Francisco Morales is struggling because we pushed him to a level that other organizations would not have. Last night he was good for 3 innings and then it all fell apart. Which can happen to a 21-year-old in AA facing 23 and 24 year olds.
This is not to suggest the organization as a whole is not below average. Reading is largely a wasteland with the handful of good prospects struggling and the career minor leaguers not very good. I suspect that problem will be fixed with a couple more promotions and minor league free agents like Bonifacio. If an organization consistently fields younger teams, however, then one should expect below average results. I have a feeling we'll be talking about the core of this Clearwater roster for a long time though, with good results up the ladder the next three years and a half dozen major leaguers (remember the big prospects like Abel and Martin and Rojas and Garcia are also there). I am not quite ready to call them the Young Guns part II, but this pitching staff is really good.