MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances in the Minors from the previous week. Any player on an organization Top 30 Prospects list on our Prospect Watch is eligible.
We're inching towards the homestretch of the Minor League season. It's often when young prospects hit the proverbial wall, especially those still getting used to the rigors of a full season of professional baseball.
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Those who made this edition of the Prospect Team of the Week, for the week of July 16-22, either bypassed the wall or have learned how to plow through it. The National League Central is particularly well represented this week, with six of the 11 honorees coming from organizations in that division.
C: Chuckie Robinson, Buies Creek Astros (Class A Adv)
(Astros' No. 26 prospect)
4 G, .412/.412/1.000, 5 R, 1 2B, 3 HR, 11 RBI, 3 SO
The first half was a real struggle for Robinson, but he's turned it on of late, hitting .333/.395/.641 in July. This past week certainly helped with four multihit games, finishing things off with a two-homer, seven-RBI performance on Sunday.
2018 Prospect Teams of the Week
1B: Mason Martin, Bristol Pirates (Rookie)
(Pirates' No. 23 prospect)
6 G, .650/.767/.900, 9 R, 5 2B, 9 BB, 3 SO, 1 SB
Martin wasn't ready for full-season ball, but he's righted the ship since moving down to the Appalachian League. He hit in all six games this past week and he had multiple hits in five of them, with the standout game coming on Saturday (4-for-5). Martin is now hitting .353/.456/.588 in 27 games with Bristol and he's made the PTOW twice.
2B: Brandon Lowe, Durham Bulls (Triple-A)
(Rays' No. 13 prospect)
6 G, .391/.423/1.000, 7 R, 2 2B, 4 HR, 8 RBI, 2 BB, 5 SO
This is Lowe's second PTOW appearance in the past four weeks and it's well deserved. He homered in four different games, starting on Monday and then in three straight contests from Thursday-Saturday. The power output is in step with what he's done all year: Lowe now has 21 combined homers between Double-A and Triple-A, leading the Rays' organization.
3B: James Nelson, Jupiter Hammerheads (Class A Adv)
(Marlins' No. 9 prospect)
5 G, .467/.550/.800, 5 R, 2 2B, 1 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 3 SO
A meniscus tear slowed the Marlins' 2017 Minor League Player of the Year, but perhaps Nelson is now finding his footing in the Florida State League. He began the week with his second home run of the year and he followed with both a two-hit game on Tuesday and a three-hit performance on Thursday. Nelson's seven RBIs for the week nearly doubled his season total.
SS: Jasrado Chisholm, Kane County Cougars/Visalia Rawhide (Class A/A Adv)
(D-backs' No. 3 prospect)
5 G, .409/.435/1.000, 6 R, 2 3B, 3 HR, 6 RBI, 1 BB, 7 SO
Chisholm made his farewell to the Midwest League a loud one, going 5-for-6 with a pair of homers and five RBIs. He's hit in three of his four games thus far in the California League and has already homered and tripled in his first 16 at-bats at the new level.
MILB Video - Title: Watch: Chisholm rips 2nd homer - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2277762483
OF: Corey Ray, Biloxi Shuckers (Double-A)
(Brewers' No. 6 prospect)
6 G, .478/.520/1.043, 8 R, 4 2B, 3 HR, 5 RBI, 1 BB, 5 SO, 3 SB
Ray collected hits in five of his six games this past week, and four of them were of the multihit variety. He homered on Thursday, Friday and Sunday, and his two stolen bases on Friday pushed him to 30 for the year. One more home run and Ray will become the first prospect to reach the 20-20 (or 20-30 in his case) plateau.
MILB Video - Title: Watch: Ray rips homer - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2298518783
OF: Jose Siri, Pensacola Blue Wahoos (Double-A)
(Reds' No. 7 prospect)
5 G, .350/.435/1.100, 6 R, 1 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 7 RBI, 3 BB, 3 SO
Siri has always tantalized with tremendous tools, but he hasn't always used them consistently. They were on display last week, however, starting with a two-homer, three-hit, four-RBI game on Wednesday. He added home runs on Thursday and Saturday, and while his year hasn't lived up to his 2017 breakout, he has shaken off missing a month, earned a promotion and is closing in on his third straight year with double-digit home runs and steals.
MILB Video - Title: Watch: Siri connects on homer - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2286152983
OF: Aristides Aquino, Pensacola Blue Wahoos (Double-A)
(Reds' No. 12 prospect)
5 G, .471/.571/.941, 5 R, 2 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 4 BB, 1 SO, 2 SB
Like his Pensacola outfield-mate, Aquino flashes some serious tools, especially his power. Perhaps he's coming on late now, as he's carrying an active six-game hitting streak. Aquino had three straight two-hit games this week and finished things off with five RBIs on Saturday and Sunday.
MILB Video - Title: Watch: Aquino drives in run - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2295625783
LHP: Taylor Hearn, Altoona Curve (Double-A)
(Pirates' No. 9 prospect)
0-0, 0.75 ERA, 2 GS, 12 IP, 8 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 11 SO, 1.00 WHIP
Hearn has always had tremendous pure stuff, but he hasn't always commanded it well enough to make one feel confident he could stick as a starter. He might be putting those questions to rest this year -- especially lately. Hearn had two strong six-inning starts this week, showing he could keep runs off the board when he's not missing bats (2 K's on Monday) and when he is (9 K's on Sunday).
MILB Video - Title: Watch: Hearn notches 9th strikeout - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2298645383
RHP: Adonis Medina, Clearwater Threshers (Class A Advanced)
(Phillies' No. 2 prospect)
0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 GS, 7 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 12 SO, 0.29 WHIP
Medina's lone start for the week was his first since his Futures Game appearance and first since he got knocked around on July 9. He turned in perhaps the best start of his career, matching a career high with a dozen strikeouts while walking no one. Take out Medina's one clunker on the 9th (2 2/3 IP, 7 ER) and the right-hander has allowed just one run over 13 innings while striking out 21 in his other two July outings.
RP: Jimmy Herget, Louisville Bats (Triple-A)
Reds' No. 13 prospect
0-0, 0.00 ERA, 3 G, 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 5 SO, 0.00 WHIP
Herget gave up a run on July 1 and hasn't again in eight subsequent outings this month. Three more perfect ones came this week, and the right-hander hasn't allowed a hit since July 2 (seven outings) and hasn't walked a batter in his past five appearances.
Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.