Pipeline preview: Moran, Dozier set to square off
Pair of Top 10 picks from 2013 Draft meet as Northwest Arkansas faces Corpus Christi
In the 2013 First-Year Player Draft, only two picks separated college infielders Colin Moran and Hunter Dozier. Moran went sixth overall to the Marlins and Dozier eighth overall to the Royals.
Now, a year and a trade later, both Moran and Dozier are already in Double-A, and they are facing off as Corpus Christi visits Northwest Arkansas for a three-game series. After winning, 5-4, Tuesday night, Moran and Corpus Christi will be looking to clinch the series Wednesday. The game, which can be seen on MiLB.TV, begins at 8:05 p.m. ET.
Moran, ranked No. 71 on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 Prospects list, is just finishing his first week in the Astros organization. He was a part of the package they acquired when they dealt Jarred Cosart to the Marlins at the Trade Deadline. In Moran's first four games with Corpus Christi, the third baseman is 4-for-15 with two runs and two RBIs. Before the deal, Moran hit .294/.342/.393 with five home runs in 89 games for Class A Advanced Jupiter.
Moran, the Astros' No. 5 prospect, was joined in Corpus Christi this week by left-hander Josh Hader and outfielder Teoscar Hernandez, who were promoted from Class A Advanced Lancaster. Hernandez, the Astros' No. 11 prospect, went 1-for-4 Tuesday in his debut. Hader, the club's No. 10 prospect, will have to wait until Thursday for his own Double-A debut.
Like Moran, Dozier, ranked No. 92 on the Top 100, began his first full professional season in Class A Advanced. He hit .295/.397/.429 with four home runs in 66 games at Wilmington before earning a promotion to Northwest Arkansas. In 40 games for the Naturals, Dozier is hitting .213/.289/.320 with three home runs.
Dozier, the Royals' No. 4 prospect, was a shortstop at Stephen F. Austin State, but he quickly moved to third base as a professional. Dozier is still learning his new position and has made 10 errors in Double-A.
Also highlighting Wednesday's Minor League slate are a few pitchers ranked in the Top 100 who are scheduled to start, including Aaron Nola (No. 47) and Aaron Blair (No. 86). Blair and Double-A Mobile will face Tennessee at 8:05 p.m.
Nola, the Phillies' No. 2 prospect, will be making his Double-A debut as he takes the mound for Reading at 7:05 p.m. against Harrisburg. The Phillies selected Nola seventh overall in the 2014 First-Year Player Draft and assigned the former LSU ace to Class A Advanced Clearwater to begin his professional career. He made seven appearances for the Threshers, posting a 3.16 ERA and a 30-to-5 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 31 1/3 innings. Fans can watch Nola's first game with Reading on MiLB.TV as he faces a Harrisburg team that is led by first baseman Matt Skole, the Nationals' No. 6 prospect.
Top prospect probables
Chris Anderson (Dodgers' No. 5), Rancho Cucamonga at High Desert
Alec Asher (Rangers' No. 13), Frisco vs. Springfield
Manny Banuelos (Yankees' No. 8), Trenton vs. Altoona
Zachary Bird (Dodgers' No. 16), Great Lakes at Dayton
Aaron Blair (D-backs' No. 4), Mobile vs. Tennessee
Austin Brice (Marlins' No. 18), Jupiter at Bradenton
Kendry Flores (Giants' No. 16), San Jose at Bakersfield
Michael Fulmer (Mets' No. 18), St. Lucie vs. Fort Myers
Amir Garrett (Reds' No. 18), Dayton vs. Great Lakes
Ismael Guillon (Reds' No. 10), Bakersfield vs. San Jose
Luis Heredia (Pirates' No. 14), West Virginia vs. Hagerstown
Jason Hursh (Braves' No. 5), Mississippi at Jacksonville
Ben Lively (Reds' No. 6), Pensacola vs. Jackson
Aaron Nola (Phillies' No. 2), Reading vs. Harrisburg
Roberto Osuna (Blue Jays' No. 5), Dunedin at Lakeland
Wes Parsons (Braves' No. 8), Lynchburg at Salem
Chris Stratton (Giants' No. 8), Richmond vs. Binghamton
Spencer Turnbull (Tigers' No. 12), Connecticut vs. Jamestown
Jose Urena (Marlins' No. 9), Jacksonville vs. Mississippi
Devin Williams (Brewers' No. 7), Helena at Idaho Falls
Taylor Williams (Brewers' No. 14), Brevard County at Tampa
Luis Ysla (Giants' No. 11), Augusta at Greenville