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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

10/28/2020 : Searching for Big Arms - Potential Minor League Free Agents of interest - American Leag

Seems like most every team has an arsenal of power arms in their bullpens ... often times they are fellas most fans haven’t heard much about. This year’s Rays used a dominating crew of relievers to drive their way to the World Series and the 2020 champion Dodgers also featured a bevy of powerful relievers ...

Since I’ve got a bit of time on my hands I thought I’d scour the minor league systems of each of the other 29 clubs to identify potential Rule 55 minor league free agents that might fit with the Phillies as part of a power pen arsenal, with both immediate needs and short term development in mind ... here’s a look at the American League Central Division.

None of these players are free agents yet ... I don’t know their exact contract status but do know they are Rule 55 eligible if they have not already signed on for 2021 or get added to the 40 man roster prior to the official free agency declaration ( five days after the World Series ends ).

Just some names that might be of interest is all ...

Chicago White Sox :

Tayron Guerrera - 29 year old RHP ( 6’8” 225 ) - He averaged 98.9 mph on his four-seam fastball in 2019 and threw the second most 100-mph pitches (178) of any pitcher in baseball. Originally signed by the Padres in 2010, traded to the Marlins in 2016. The White Sox claimed him off waivers from Miami in December of 2019. He participated in the White Sox’s alternate training camp but is not presently on the 40 man roster. He has pitched parts of three seasons in the major leagues including full seasons with the Marlins in 2018 and 2019, control and command have been issues. Far too many walks ... velocity is big time though ... with the right coaching could he become a gem 🧐.

Kodi Medeiros - 24 year old LHP ( 6’1” 195 ) - fastball maxes out at 95-96 mph - lefty tailing action, has a plus slider - lateral break, and a solid changeup. He was the Brewers # 1 draft pick in the 2014 draft, was traded to the White Sox in 2018. Has been a starter most of his career until 2019 when he fared much better out of the bullpen — a 2.55 ERA over 42 1/3 relief innings, as opposed to a 7.75 ERA over 40 2/3 frames as a starter.  Spent the summer in the White Sox alternate training camp but is presently not on the 40 man roster.

Connor Sadzeck - 29 year old RHP ( 6’7” 240 ) - he missed the entire 2020 season after having Tommy John surgery in June of 2019. His fastball was as intimidating at his size, 96-99 MPH with occasional 100 MPH readings. Sadzeck pitched in the major leagues in 2018 with Texas and 2019 with Seattle. Was originally signed by the Rangers in 2012 and traded to Mariners in 2019 ... signed as minor league free agent by White Sox in January of 2020. Another big arm that has struggled with control issues ... coming off injury and perhaps loyal to White Sox for giving him a contract ... could be an intriguing potential signing if healthy and available 🤔.

Cleveland Indians :

Argenis Angulo - 26 year old RHP ( 6’3” 225 ) - fastball reaches 96 consistently although sits a bit below that ... also throws a curve and occasional change up. He had an outstanding 2019 season with AA Akron as their closer posting a 2.06 ERA and averaging over two strikeouts per IP. He was drafted by the Indians in the 19th round of the 2014 draft. Some may consider his stuff MLB “fringy” but from what I’ve read he’s got moxy and competitiveness that is worth a look ... just saying 😎

Henry Martinez - 26 year old RHP ( 6’1” 180 ) - consistently sits at 95-96 and frequently touches 97-98 , he is a power arm with a three-pitch mix and strike-throwing ability. ( 95 walks in 281 IP with 249 K’s ) ... was signed by Cleveland as an amateur free agent in 2013. Has not been as successful in AAA as he was in lower levels ... still has power stuff that perhaps our coaches could sharpen.

Detroit Tigers :

Sandy Baez - 26 year old RHP ( 6’2” 219 ) - has a power sinker that sits in the 95-98 range as a reliever and occasionally flashes 100. He’s a strike thrower as well. Dominated at the lower levels but has struggled at AAA and brief stints in the majors ... reports say his pitches flatten out at higher velocities ... signed with the Tigers in 2011 as an amateur free agent.

Gerson Moreno - 25 year old RHP ( 6’0” 218 ) - flashes upper 90’s with fastball but generally sits in the 94-95 range ... differing reports on his breaking stuff ... some say high spin rates and others say slider is flat. Signed by the Tigers as an amateur free agent in 2012.

Kansas City Royals :

Connor Greene - 25 year old RHP ( 6’3” 185 ) - heavy sinking Fastball that sits 94-97 and touches 99-100. Curveball is second best pitch with a change up as third offering. Has battled control and release point consistency with way too many walks ( 54 in 112 IP in 2019 with 95 K’s.) Was drafted in the 7th round of the 2013 draft by Toronto. Traded to Cardinals in 2018 and claimed off waivers in November of that season by the Royals.

Nick Howard - 27 year old RHP ( 6’4” 215 ) - FB consistently in 94-96 range ... tops at 98 ... curve ball and change up as secondary offerings. Was the # 1 draft pick of the Reds in 2014, signed as a minor league free agent in August, 2019 with the Royals.

Andres Machado - 27 year old RHP ( 6’0” 220 ) - FB mid to upper 90’s ... best pitch is his slider. Was a free agent in 2019 and re-signed with Royals. Originally signed by Royals in 2010 as an amateur free agent.

Yunior Marte - 25 year old RHP ( 6’2” 180 ) - Power FB that reaches 97 with a plus change up and two seam sinker. Was part of the Royals Alternate Training site group. Originally signed by Royals in 2012 as an amateur free agent.

Minnesota Twins :

Moises Gomez - 23 year old RHP ( 6’1” 215 ) - FB can reach upper nineties, has a 36 % K rate and low hit per IP numbers throughout his career. Was signed as an amateur free agent by the Twins in 2014. He hasn’t pitched above the Advanced A level ... played for Fort Myers in 2019 after being promoted from low A and appeared in 13 games - 30 K’s, 9 BB in 21 IP.

Jake Reed - 28 year old RHP ( 6’2” 195 ) - He’s a sidearmer with FB capabilities in the mid 90’s and a decent slider. Was the Twins 5th round draft choice in the 2014 draft ... he had excellent numbers at AAA Rochester in 2016 to 2018 ... took a bit of a step back in 2019 ... he puts me in mind of Trevor Kelley but with more zip ... just saying ... sidearmers with pop are often difficult to hit 🤔.

Just my two cents on some potential diamonds in the rough ... but hey, what do I know 😳

Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️

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