First-timers lead Prospect Team of the Week

August 2nd, 2021

MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances from the previous seven days. Any Minor Leaguer currently on an organization Top 30 Prospects list in our Prospect Rankings is eligible.

The time right before the Trade Deadline can be a stressful one for all involved in baseball. That includes the prospects who have to hold their breath to find out if they’re staying put or on the move. It didn’t keep the members of this edition of the Prospect Team of the Week from having huge weeks, including one who was traded and played in two different organizations.

It was a good week for debuts, with eight of the 11 on this week’s PTOW, covering games from July 26-Aug. 1, showing up for the first time. There’s one three-timer on the squad, but he’s appearing in a different position, because we’re all about positional flexibility.

C: Yainer Diaz, Lynchburg Hillcats/Fayetteville Woodpeckers (High-A)
(Astros No. 29)

.500/.444/.875, 4 G, 16 AB, 4 R, 8 H, 3 2B, 1 HR, 11 RBI, 3 SO

Diaz didn’t let something like getting traded at the Deadline stop his hot bat. He went 6-for-12 over his first three games of the week for Lynchburg in the Indians' organization, kicking things off with a homer and five RBIs on Tuesday. After he was traded to the Astros, along with Phil Maton, for Myles Straw, the 22-year-old catcher went 2-for-4 with his fourth straight multi-RBI game on Saturday. He’s now fourth in the Low-A East with his .317 average.

1B: Luken Baker, Springfield Cardinals (Double-A)
(Cardinals No. 14)

.304/.360/1.087, 6 G, 23 AB, 7 R, 7 H, 6 HR, 10 RBI, 2 BB, 5 SO

Baker’s carrying tool is definitely his power, and it was on full display this past week, with six of his seven hits reaching the seats. He hit two out on Wednesday, two more on Friday and one apiece on Saturday and Sunday. That now puts him second in the Double-A Central in both homers (21) and RBIs (54), while he’s ninth in SLG (.502).

2B: Cameron Cannon, Greenville Drive (High-A)
(Red Sox No. 25)

.476/.542/.810, 5 G, 21 AB, 7 R, 10 H, 1 2B, 2 HR, 8 RBI, 2 BB, 1 SO

Cannon now has a nine-game hitting streak going after getting base knocks in all five contests last week. Three were of the multi-hit variety, and he went 6-for-10 with two homers and seven RBIs on Thursday and Friday. The infielder is now hitting .305 for the year, good for third in the High-A East, during his first full season.

Others receiving votes: Kody Clemens, Toledo Mud Hens (Triple-A, Tigers)

3B: Spencer Steer, Wichita Wind Surge (Double-A)
(Twins No. 28)

.444/.565/1.056, 5 G, 18 AB, 7 R, 8 H, 3 2B, 1 3B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 4 SO

This is Steer’s third PTOW showing this season, though it's his first at the hot corner (he’s been at 2B twice). Much of the damage he did this week came on Tuesday, when he went 5-for-6 with three doubles, a triple and four RBIs, though he did homer on both Wednesday and Thursday to bring his season total across two levels to 18.

SS: Liover Peguero, Greensboro Grasshoppers (High-A)
(Pirates No. 4)

.423/.464/1.038, 6 G, 26 AB, 9 R, 11 H, 1 2B, 5 HR, 12 RBI, 2 BB, 7 SO, 2 SB, 1 CS

Peguero had hits in all six games last week and homered in each of the last four. He really went off over the weekend, going a combined 9-for-13 with four homers and nine RBIs. Even though it’s been a bit of an uneven season for the 20-year-old shortstop, he now has double digits in homers (11) and steals (17).

OF: Heriberto Hernandez, Charleston RiverDogs (Low-A)
(Rays No. 10)

.571/.667/1.143, 6 G, 21 AB, 8 R, 12 H, 3 2B, 3 HR, 7 RBI, 6 BB, 5 SO, 1 SB, 1 CS

Hernandez has four multi-hit games last week, kicking things off with a two-homer performance on Tuesday. He added another in a three-hit game on Thursday, then went 4-for-5 with two doubles on Friday. The week helped him raise his July numbers to .305/.369/.537 after scuffling a bit in the first two months of his first season with the Rays after coming from the Rangers in a December 2020 trade.

OF: Andy Pages, Great Lakes Loons (High-A)
(Dodgers No. 6)

.435/.500/.913, 6 G, 23 AB, 5 R, 10 H, 2 2B, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 2 BB, 7 SO, 1 CS

Pages began the week with a homer on Tuesday, then had a two-homer game on Friday, with both of those contests being three-hit performances for the outfielder and he hit in all six games last week. The 20-year-old now has 21 homers, good for second in the High-A Central. He’s also second in RBIs (62) and third in SLG (.539).

OF: Gabriel Gonzalez, DSL Mariners (Rookie)
(Mariners No. 30)
.500/.524/1.188, 5 G, 16 AB, 7 R, 8 H, 2 2B, 3 HR, 11 RBI, 3 BB, 2 SO, 2 SB

One of the Mariners’ big signings at the start of the 2020-21 international signing period, which didn’t open until January of this year, Gonzalez is hitting the ground running during his pro debut. The 17-year-old outfielder had three multi-hit games and five extra-base hits, including his first three professional home runs. He’s now hitting .347/.433/.592 over his first 14 games and is third in the DSL in RBIs (15) and tied for fourth in total bases (29).

Others receiving votes: Daniel Cabrera, West Michigan Whitecaps (High-A, Tigers)

LHP: Josh Walker, Syracuse Mets (Triple-A)
(Mets No. 22)

0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 GS, 8 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 6 SO, 0.38 WHIP

Walker was able to brush off a rough outing on July 23 in his Triple-A debut to post this gem on Thursday. He didn’t allow a hit until his eighth and final inning and faced the minimum thanks to a pair of double plays. Walker has pitched his way across three levels of the Mets' system this year and has a combined 3.13 ERA and .197 BAA to show for it.

Others receiving votes: Ken Waldichuk, Somerset Patriots (Double-A, Yankees)

RHP: Cade Cavalli, Harrisburg Senators (Double-A)
(Nats No. 3/MLB No. 76)

1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 GS, 6 2/3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 12 SO, 0.45 WHIP

This was the second straight outstanding start for the Futures Gamer and he’s allowed just one unearned run over those two outings spanning 12 2/3 innings. It was his sixth double-digit strikeout performance of the year, second in seven Double-A starts and the 2020 first-rounder has an impressive 14.61 K/9 rate for the year.

Others receiving votes: Luis Frias, Amarillo Sod Poodles (Double-A, D-backs)

RP: Maurico Llovera, Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Triple-A)
(Phillies No. 17)

0-0, 2 SV, 0.00 ERA, 2 G, 2 1/3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO, 0.00 WHIP

Llovera was our reliever of the week at the very start of the season and is back again after being perfect in his two outings, both save opportunities. It’s been an up-and-down year for the reliever, but he had a strong July, allowing just one run over five appearances while picking up three saves in Triple-A while also contributing to the big league bullpen for two outings.

Others receiving votes: RJ Dabovich, Richmond Flying Squirrels (Double-A, Giants); Caleb Freeman, Winston-Salem Dash/Birmingham Barons (High-A/Double-A, White Sox)