Prospects of the Week: April 9 thru April 15

Each week, we scour the boxscores and use our own proprietary roto weighting system to pick one hitter and one pitcher who had the best week at each minor league level. You can also check out our sortable weekly hitters and pitchers statistics online to pick your own prospects of the week!

Here are Baseball Farm’s Prospects of the Week for the second week of the season, April 9 thru April 15, 2018:

Pitchers


AAA

Adam Plutko – Columbus Clippers (Indians)

Plutko is a 26 year old righty out of UCLA with 3.2 career MLB innings under his belt. This week, Plutko spun a gem when he took on a tough Durham Bulls lineup on April 12. Plutko pitched 7 innings of 1-hit ball, walking no batters, and striking out 8 in a dominant performance. If Plutko keeps up this pace in the International League this summer, look for him to earn some bullpen time or a spot start with Cleveland.


AA

Colin Poche – Jackson Generals (Diamondbacks)

Yes you are looking at his stats correctly. Poche is a reliever, so he only logged 4 innings of work this week for the Generals, but he was so dominant that he was an easy choice for AA pitching prospect of the week. Poche is a 24 year-old lefty out of Flower Mound, Texas, who throws straight filth on the mound. Poche made two appearances this week, working 2 innings each time. In his first appearance April 9, Poche struck out 4 of the 6 batters he faced. He must have found something minuscule to work on following that performance, because in his appearance on April 13, he punched out 5 of 6 batters. Many fantasy players don’t follow the progress of relief pitching prospects with much interest, but Poche is a name you should know. He has allowed 1 hit and struck out 15 batters in 6 innings of work this year.

Just for kicks, here are his 2017 pitching statistics, when he posted a 14.4 K/9 ratio:



A-Advanced

Dane Dunning – Winston-Salem Dash (White Sox #6)

Dunning has picked up 2018 where he left off 2017, as one of the rising RHP pitching prospects in baseball. This week he turned in an excellent start for a talented Winston-Salem Dash club. Dunning took a no-hit bid into the 7th inning against the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Dunning punched out 8 batters, walked none, and allowed 2 hits over 6.1 innings of work. His season line now stands at 1-0 with a 0.79 ERA, 0.62 WHIP, and 16 Ks in 11.1 innings. Opposing batters are hitting a measly .122 against him. As he’s 23, he could be aggressively promoted up the ladder by the White Sox this season.


A-Full Season

Zac Lowther – Delmarva Shorebirds (Orioles)

Lowther joins fellow bespectacled hurler Dane Dunning in grabbing PotW honors this week. Lowther is a big (6-2, 235) lefty out of Xavier who was selected by the Os in the competitive balance round last summer. This week, Lowther picked up the win in a totally dominant performance against the Hickory Crawdads in Sally League action. Lowther worked six no-hit innings, allowing only a single walk to spoil his perfect performance. He also punched out 13 Hickory batters in the process, a new career high for the lefty.

Hitters


AAA

Carlos Franco – 3B – Gwinnett Stripers (Braves)

Franco is a 26 year-old 3B prospect who has toiled in the Braves system since 2009! He performed brilliantly for the Gwinnett Stripers this week en route to earning Player of the Week honors. Franco hit safely in every game this week, recording 3 multi-hit efforts and driving in at least one run in every game he played in. Franco also launched 3 HR this week, slugging a robust .769. He’s a late-blooming prospect that could merit some attention – he was voted an organizational All-Star in 2017 with a 21 HR performance across AA and AAA.


AA

Lane Thomas – CF – Springfield Cardinals (Cardinals)

Toolsy CF prospect has come out of the gates roaring in 2018, riding a 10-game hitting streak to a .421 average. This week, he hit safely again in every game, posting a .434 batting average and slugging .913. He homered 3 times, scored 6, drove in 6, and even stole a bag for good measure. A potential stat sheet stuffer, and still only 22 years old, Thomas’s progress should be monitored this season.


A-Advanced

Luis Alexander Basabe – CF – Winston-Salem Dash (White Sox #13)

Micker Adolfo – RF – Winston-Salem Dash (White Sox #10)

A tie?! What is this nonsense? In all fairness, Phil Goyette, our PotW writer, is a gigantic White Sox homer, so we gave him this one.

Basabe and Adolfo led the charge for an electric Winston-Salem lineup this week. Basabe, a speedy CF with some pop, went 14-for-23 this week with 5 multi-hit efforts. He also hit a home-run, stole 2 bags, drove in an impressive 9 runs, and scored 7 runs of his own. He’s electric, and he’s hitting .426 on the season.

Adolfo, a power-hitting RF prospect who has been playing at DH due to right elbow inflammation, refused to let his teammate take all the glory this week. Micker hit safely in all 7 games this week, including 5 multi-hit efforts, and drove in 7 runs of his own. He’s now slugging .651 on the season.

It should be mentioned that fellow W-S Dash OF Joel Booker had a brilliant week himself, finishing one game with a walk-off steal of home (seriously) and another with a walk-off squeeze bunt. The Dash OF is jammed full of talent, with Blake Rutherford and Alex Call also on the roster, and Luis Robert sitting on the bench until his thumb fully heals.


A-Full Season

Juan Yepez – 3B – Peoria Chiefs (Cardinals)

For you long-time followers of the PotW, you know we love our Venezuelan prospects. This week we welcome 20 year-old Venezuelan Juan Yepez to the fold. Yepez was traded to the Cardinals organization by the Braves for Matt Adams. This week, he produced 4 multi-hit efforts, finishing with a .458 batting average. He had a big night on April 13 against the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. Juan went 2-for-4 with 2 runs scored and 4 RBI. He’s now carrying a 1.376 OPS for the season.

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