Alfredo Aceves Rebounds
Alfredo Aceves was a real standout in the Mexican League, and took less than a full season in the minors to make the big leagues. It isn’t all that uncommon for an experienced pitcher to rocket through several layers of the minor leagues in a small period of time. It is also not all that uncommon for minor league pitchers to remain locked in all year, but revert back to form the following year. Sometimes players like Aceves are in independent leagues because they just weren’t lucky enough to be discovered by the right major league scouts, but sometimes they play there because they just weren’t consistently good enough to play with the big guys.
Aceves started the season by allowing 10 runs in 9 innings. He responsed this week by throwing 14 2/3 innings of shutout baseball in two starts. He has also maintained his trademark control, walking just 5 batters in 23 2/3 innings on the year. Aceves doesn’t have overpowering stuff or one real out pitch, so he needs to remain ahead in the count with few people on base in order to function.
Its worth remembering that Aceves is the next starting pitcher on our depth chart, especially now that Ian Kennedy is out with a mysterious finger injury. We are one injury or double header away from relying upon his arm to get us into the playoffs. As far as 7th starters go, he’s a pretty solid pick. I would also look for Aceves to be showcased as trade bait in the coming months.
Josh Schmidt May Be A Bullpen Sleeper
Side armer Josh Schmidt hasn’t done a whole lot since he dominated the New York-Penn League shortly after being drafted. He spent three seasons in Tampa, and failed to overcome his poor control despite striking out 207 batters during that time.
Schmidt throws a 91 mph fastball and a frisbee slider. Lefties hit him a hundred points better than righties, as can be expected from a side armer. His control is poor, but good enough against right handed batters.
Schmidt has been pretty much unhittable for Trenton this season. He has scattered just one hit and two walks in 9 innings with 12 strikeouts. All of the baserunners have come against left-handed hitters. If the Yankee bullpen continues to look terrible, he may be a sleeper for the 25th spot on the roster. Pair him with LOOGY and he could be valuable. While Schmidt has only a little more than half of a season of Double-A experience, the 25 year-old college graduate is experienced enough that he could make the jump to fill some of Scranton’s vacant pitching spots.