While it’s absolutely too soon to make any judgments or assumptions, it never hurts to take a quick peek at who’s entering spring training with a spring in his step. Most teams have only played two or three games, with a majority of batters hitting either a very cleanly sliced 1.000, .333 or .250 and a majority of pitchers only having two or three innings under his belt.
Preface aside, now might be a good time to take a once-over across the Grapefruit and Cactus leagues to see who has entered 2014 MLB Spring Training without much offseason rust. It’s also a good time to provide some exposure for younger players who may never again appear on any MLB leaders list.
Yangervis Solarte 2B (6-for-7, 2 HR, 5 RBI) The 26 year-old Venezuelan has entered exhibition with some nice pop. If his solid campaign continues, he may receive his first big league call-up should Jurickson Profar or Adam Rosales find themselves on-the-mend at intersecting points during the season. A majority of Solarte’s minor league action has come at second base, but he’s shown the ability to adequately field the hot corner, and corner outfield positions.
Jurickson Profar SS (5-for-15, 2 2B, 5 RBI) Speaking of Profar, he’s off to a great start himself, decreasing the above-mentioned Solarte’s chances of a call-up. Already having fifteen at-bats, Profar is showing the ability to connect consistently, and put the ball in play with runners in scoring position.
Mike Trout CF (5 RBI, GS) Trout’s only had a handful of at-bats, but he’s already being Mike Trout. He expressed his approval of his recently signed, one-year, $1M precursor contract by belting a grand slam, one of three Angels homers in a 15-3 win over the Cubs on Friday.
Nick Castellanos 3B (5-for-10, 2 2B, HR, 7 RBI) The Tigers top prospect has some big shoes to fill. He’ll likely spend a lot of time at third base with Prince Fielder‘s departure and Miguel Cabrera‘s move back to first. Much of the talk on Castellanos coming into 2013 spring training was that he wasn’t quite ready, and his September call-up was not awe-inspiring. In 11 games, he went 5-for-18, all singles. Castellanos’ teammate Austin Jackson is off to a good start this spring as well (7-for-11, 5 RBI)
Mike Moustakas 3B (5-for-9, 2 HR, 6 RBI) If the power-hitting, run-producing Moustakas of 2012 is indeed back, the Royals may have what they need at third base. Last year Moustakas suffered a bit of a sophomore slump, hitting .233 with 12 home runs — eight fewer than in ’12.
Tommy Medica 1B (8-for-11, 2 2B, HR, 3 RBI ) Medica hit a solid .290 over 69 at-bats during the 2013 campaign, and he’s proving this spring that he wants to stick around. As of now, he’ll remain Yonder Alonso‘s backup on the depth chart. It’s going to take a lot more than nineteen games in the Bigs to supplant Alonso, but at the same time, Alonso only has 209 MLB games under his belt, so if Medica’s success continues, things could get interesting.
Oakland A’s prospect Billy Burns has already stolen five bases.
Again, not much to write north about, but as things start shaking out, keep an eye on XN Sports for more on MLB spring training stats leaders.