Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

MLB News

Prospect preview: Happ looks to homer in fourth straight

Here's a look at top prospects to watch in today's Minor League action:

Hitter to watch: Ian Happ (Cubs' No. 2, No. 26 overall), Iowa at Oklahoma City (12:05 p.m. ET on MiLB.TV)

Here's a look at top prospects to watch in today's Minor League action:

Hitter to watch: Ian Happ (Cubs' No. 2, No. 26 overall), Iowa at Oklahoma City (12:05 p.m. ET on MiLB.TV)

Happ's homer on Sunday, a solo blast in the sixth off former Major League All-Star Jair Jurrjens, gave him three straight games with a round-tripper. The second baseman has already totaled 13 bases and scored five runs through his first 15 at-bats of the season for Triple-A Iowa, following up a strong 15-homer, 73-RBI season between Tennessee and Myrtle Beach last season.

Pitcher to watch: Jay Groome (Red Sox's No. 3, No. 39 overall), Greenville vs. Lexington (7:05 p.m. ET on MiLB.TV)

Groome, the 12th overall pick by Boston in last June's MLB Draft, is set to make his full-season debut after making two starts in the rookie Gulf Coast League and one start for Class A Lowell last summer. The southpaw may be handled carefully early in the year, but Red Sox fans will be eager to see what he can do for Greenville.

Video: Top Prospects: Jason Groome, LHP, Red Sox

Duel of the day: Francis Martes (Astros' No. 1No. 19 overall) vs. Frank Duncan (D-backs' No. 24) Fresno vs. Reno (9:35 p.m. ET on MiLB.TV)

Martes' name was floated around in the Astros' trade rumors surrounding White Sox ace Jose Quintana, but Houston likes what it has in the big right-hander. Martes fared well in Arizona Fall League action last fall, posting a 3.22 ERA and 10.1 strikeouts per nine innings over six starts.

Video: Top Prospects: Francis Martes, RHP, Astros

Duncan was traded from the Pirates to the D-backs' organization hours before pitchers and catchers were set to report for Spring Training. The right-hander is looking to build on a career year in which he went 12-8 with a 2.34 ERA between Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis and earned a trip to the Triple-A All-Star Game.

Monday's Top 100 prospect probables
A.J. Puk (Athletics' No. 2, No. 67 overall), Stockton vs. Modesto (10:10 p.m. ET)
Mike Soroka (Braves' No. 4, No. 75 overall), M-Braves vs. Jacksonville (11:35 a.m. ET)
Forrest Whitley (Astros' No. 5, No. 81 overall), Quad Cities at Peoria (6:05 p.m. ET)
Walker Buehler (Dodgers No. 5, No. 90 overall) vs. Jake Jewell (Angels No. 26), Rancho Cucamonga at Inland Empire (10:05 p.m. ET)

More top prospect probables
Austin Voth (Nationals' No. 8), Syracuse at Pawtucket (Triple-A)
Chase De Jong (Mariners' No. 15), Tacoma at Sacramento Game 2 (Triple-A)
Mark Appel (Phillies' No. 21), Lehigh Valley at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Triple-A)
Brooks Pounders (Angels' No. 22), Salt Lake at Albuquerque (Triple-A)
Luke Jackson (Braves' No. 26), Gwinnett at Norfolk (Triple-A)
Ryan Williams (Cubs' No. 26), Iowa at Oklahoma City (Triple-A)
Jon Harris (Blue Jays' No. 8), New Hampshire vs. Reading (Double-A)
Tanner Scott (Orioles' No. 11), Bowie at Erie (Double-A)
Alex Young (D-backs' No. 11), Birmingham at Jackson (Double-A)
Duane Underwood Jr. (Cubs' No. 15), Tennessee at Pensacola (Double-A)
Brett Martin (Rangers' No. 5), Down East vs. Winston-Salem (Class A Advanced)
Marcos Diplan (Brewers No. 11) vs. A.J. Puckett (Royals No. 11), Carolina at Wilmington (Class A Advanced)
Touki Toussaint (Braves' No. 11), Florida vs. Dunedin (Class A Advanced)
Gage Hinsz (Pirates' No. 11), Bradenton at St. Lucie (Class A Advanced)
Matt Krook (Giants' No. 14), San Jose at Lancaster (Class A Advanced)
Jake Woodford (Cardinals' No. 17), Palm Beach at Charlotte (Class A Advanced)
Matt Hall (Tigers' No. 19), Lakeland vs. Clearwater (Class A Advanced)
Zack Littell (Yankees' No. 23), Tampa vs. Fort Myers(Class A Advanced)
Joan Baez (Nationals' No. 24), Potomac at Frederick (Class A Advanced)
Framber Valdez (Astros' No. 30), Buies Creek vs. Myrtle Beach (Class A Advanced)
Juan Hillman (Indians' No. 12), Lake County vs. Great Lakes (Class A)
Joey Wentz (Braves' No. 13), Rome at Kannapolis (Class A)
Alex Wells (Orioles' No. 17), Delmarva at Greensboro (Class A)
Victor Diaz (White Sox No. 23), Wisconsin vs. Burlington (Class A)
Osman Gutierrez (Blue Jays' No. 26), Lansing at Bowling Green (Class A)
Nick Wells (Mariners' No. 29), Clinton vs. Beloit (Class A)

Matt Kelly is a reporter for based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB.