The Farm Report 5/1/11

Jorge Vazquez (1B) is not letting up.  He is hitting .323/.343/.635/.979 after the first month of play.  He has driven out nine homers and picked up three doubles and 27 RBIs.    Jesus Montero (C) had an unfortunate incident, taking a foul ball off the “groin,” which led to him sitting out a few games.  Still, he has shown he is ready to hit at the next level, going .365/.360/.473/.833 in April.  That is not a typo, Montero’s batting average is actually higher than his OBP, as he has not taken a single walk this season but has hit a sac fly.  Justin Maxwell (CF) has shown a lot of power at the plate so far.  He has driven eight homers and nineteen RBIs, also collecting a couple doubles and a triple.  He also leads Scranton in strikeouts, however, whiffing 35 times.

Brandon Laird (IF) and Kevin Russo (IF) both struggled at the plate.  Laird is hitting .184/.213/.289/.502, which is actually a decent improvement over his line a couple weeks ago.  Russo has also improved, though he still has a way to go, as he is hitting .218/.292/.287/.579.

D.J. Mitchell (SP) has thrown 21.1 innings for the Yankees, making three starts and four appearances.  His ERA for April was 2.95, but his FIP is 4.61.  He has given up seven runs on sixteen hits and has walked twelve and struck out fourteen.  Kevin Whelan (CP) has done a good job closing out games for Scranton.  He has eight saves this season and owns a 1.54 ERA, allowing just two runs on six hits.  He has struck out thirteen and walked just three.

Hector Noesi (SP) was sent back down to Scranton, never making an appearance in his short time in the Bronx.  Buddy Carlyle (RP) took his place on the MLB roster and has made a couple strong relief appearances for the Yankees.  Scranton also saw their old friend Kei Igawa briefly, as well as Kevin Millwood, who opted out of his minor league contract with the Yankees today.

Trenton Thunder (AA): Trenton did not have the best April, ending the month 10-12 and five games behind the Reading Phillies for fourth place in the Eastern League Eastern division.  Trenton is not doing well at the plate, with a team line of .223/.303.314/.616.  They lead the EL in both strikeouts (205) and walks (74).  Their pitching has been fairly middle of the road, however, they have been missing two of their best pitchers with minor injuries.

Austin Romine (C), started April slowly, but ended it on a tear.  He is hitting .306/.383/.500/.883 right now.  He has three homers, fifteen RBIs and five doubles.  Romine has struck out eleven times, but he has also drawn nine walks.  Corban Joseph (2B) is having a strong start, going .292/.358/.361/.719.  On the other hand, Joseph needs some work in the field, picking up six errors in less than a month.

Trenton should boast one of the better pitching staffs in AA, but they have been slowed by injury. Dellin Betances (SP) and Manny Banuelos (SP) have both just returned to the Trenton rotation.  Meanwhile, Graham Stoneburner (SP) has been sent to the DL with a stiff neck, after starting the season off strong.

Tampa Yankees (A+): The Tampa Yankees are probably happy to see April go, as they have struggled early, going 9-14 and sitting 7.5 games behind the Daytona Cubs in the Florida State League North Division.  They have dropped their last three games.  Tampa’s pitchers are taking a beating, as they are at the bottom of the FSL with a 5.36 ERA, giving up 119 earned runs and 19 homers.

Robert Lyerly (3B) is still providing a big bat for Tampa, while Walter Ibarra (SS) has also put together a strong April.  Lyerly is hitting .333/.421.519/.940 with two homers, a triple and seven doubles.   Ibarra is hitting .324/.366.432/.798 with two homers and two stolen bases.

Charleston RiverDogs (A-): Charleston is also on a bit of a losing streak, dropping their last three games to put them three behind the Asheville Tourists in the South Atlantic League Southern Division.  The RiverDogs find themselves in the middle of the pack in both hitting and pitching so far.  Their pitchers have given up 25 homers, just one less than the SAL leader Delmarva, however, their pitchers also lead the league in strikeouts (224).

Slade Heathcott (CF) continues to hit for Charleston.  He is hitting .370/.453/.630/1.082 so far this season.  He has two homers, two triples and eleven doubles.  Heathcott has swiped three bags, though he has been caught stealing four times.    J.R. Murphy (C) has shone early in 2011, hitting .314/.333/.477/.810 with three homers.  Gary Sanchez (C) spent some time on the DL and has struggled since returning.  Over his last ten games he is hitting just .209/.239/.233/.472 with just one double.  He struck out sixteen times during that stretch while walking just twice.