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MLB Look-alikes: Brandon Belt and Chris Kattan

The Golden Sombrero presents MLB Look-alikes: Brandon Belt and Chris Kattan


Top 50 Prospects: #41 – Zack Wheeler

#41 Zack Wheeler

New York Mets

DOB: 5/30/1990

Previous Rank: N/R

ETA: 2014

Wheeler was traded straight up for Carlos Beltran in July and was sent immediately to High Class A St. Lucie where he posted a 2.00 ERA with a 31:5 K:BB ratio in 27 innings.  Those numbers were considerably better than those from the 88 innings he threw in the California League before the trade.  Nevertheless, Wheeler immediately became the top prospect in the Mets organization, and at just 21 years of age, he should be in the rotation at Citi by 2014.

Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff W L ERA G GS IP BB SO HBP
2010 20 Augusta SALL A SFG 3 3 3.99 21 13 58.2 38 70 7
2011 21 2 Teams 2 Lgs A+ SFG,NYM 9 7 3.52 22 22 115.0 52 129 6
2011 21 San Jose CALL A+ SFG 7 5 3.99 16 16 88.0 47 98 4
2011 21 St. Lucie FLOR A+ NYM 2 2 2.00 6 6 27.0 5 31 2
2 Seasons 12 10 3.68 43 35 173.2 90 199 13
A+ (1 season) A+ 9 7 3.52 22 22 115.0 52 129 6
A (1 season) A 3 3 3.99 21 13 58.2 38 70 7
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/16/2011.
Year Age Tm Lg Lev Aff W L ERA IP WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2010 20 Augusta SALL A SFG 3 3 3.99 58.2 1.449 7.2 0.0 5.8 10.7 1.84
2011 21 2 Teams 2 Lgs A+ SFG,NYM 9 7 3.52 115.0 1.322 7.8 0.5 4.1 10.1 2.48
2011 21 San Jose CALL A+ SFG 7 5 3.99 88.0 1.375 7.6 0.7 4.8 10.0 2.09
2011 21 St. Lucie FLOR A+ NYM 2 2 2.00 27.0 1.148 8.7 0.0 1.7 10.3 6.20
2 Seasons 12 10 3.68 173.2 1.365 7.6 0.4 4.7 10.3 2.21
A+ (1 season) A+ 9 7 3.52 115.0 1.322 7.8 0.5 4.1 10.1 2.48
A (1 season) A 3 3 3.99 58.2 1.449 7.2 0.0 5.8 10.7 1.84
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/16/2011.

Wheeler features a fastball that sits consistently around 94-95 mph with the ability to reach back for 97 mph.  His best secondary pitch is a true 60 curveball with good 12-6 shape and about 15 mph off of the heater.  His third pitch is a changeup that is far behind the other two pitches at this point due primarily to an inability to maintain arm speed or slot.  The pitch has arm side life with sink, though, and has a chance to be a useable pitch with just minor improvement.

His 6-foot-4 frame is lanky and projectable and might still allow him to pick up a tick on the fastball.  Wheeler should begin the year in Double-A and might push that ETA up a bit, but the Mets are the worst team in the East and have no business rushing either Wheeler or Harvey in our opinion.  The good news for fans in Queens is that the Mets appear to finally have real pitching prospects with real top-of-the-rotation upside.

Video: Tim Lincecum’s Mechanics in Slow Motion


Changeups and Screwballs: A Southpaw’s Perspective for 9/6/11

I hope everyone enjoyed his or her holiday weekend as much as I did.  Lots of exciting things happening over Labor Day weekend, so let’s jump right in.

- I finally caved and joined Twitter.  Follow me @sp_flips to get up to date info and nonsense.

- So much for having a bunch of exciting finishes across multiple divisions this year.  With the Giants, Indians, White Sox, and Cardinals failing to gain any ground whatsoever; it appears as if the only exciting race might be the AL West.  Unless the Rays can somehow make a run for the wildcard in the AL East, that is.

- George who?  Kottaras? What a special night it was for the back-up catcher.  Hitting for the cycle is rare enough, but how rare is it to see a back up catcher do it?  I am not completely sure, just sure enough to say that you probably won’t see it happen again in your lifetime.

- Seeing old Charlie Manuel play a game under protest took me back to my youth summer league days.  Did he have to put up a $100 cash like my coaches did?  Or do you think the front office covered it for him?

- Congrats to Adrian Beltre- now the youngest 3B to ever amass 2,000 hits.  Just imagine what could be if he knew how to stay healthy?  Wow.

- Watching Josh Beckett go down was rough.  Not only does he play on my fantasy squad, but he also proliferated the notion that pitchers are not athletes.  Just watch this and tell me where/how he hurt himself. (FF to the 21-second mark.)

- How about Javier Vazquez?  Dude has been looking like it’s 2009 again.  Make sure nobody steals his Delorean.

- I can only imagine the silence in the Jays front office boxes as Brett Lawrie did this.

- Have a great day everybody, and remember…there are only 4 days left in this workweek.

Golden Sombrero: Cody Ross

Bottom 2: Cody Ross struck out swinging against Cliff Lee

Bottom 4: Ross struck out swinging against Lee

Bottom 7: Ross struck out swinging against Lee

Bottom 9: Ross called out on strikes against Lee

Final Line: 0-for-4, 4 K, 3 LOB

Notes: On Thursday night Ross fanned against CLee in all four at-bat and became the second player to notch a sombrero in that manner this season.  Even though he may be known around Philly as SORRYDOC, the 2010 NLCS MVP was hardly a threat against Lee.

Total 2011 Sombreros: 85