Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Rule 5: Starters

LHP Douglas Arguello, 26, (Astros): The Nicaraguan was originally signed by the 'Stros in 2001. He's a soft tossing lefty who throws in the upper 80’s and touches 91 MPH. Arguello changes his speeds well and has a plus change.

He's a slow bloomer, but his work has improved year by year. While not a power guy, he does sport a 3:1 K-to-W ratio, and he's an extreme ground ball guy, getting 55-60% of his outs on the dirt. His upside isn't that high, but he can step in and fill a bottom of the rotation spot.

The Astros like him as at least an insurance policy; they inked him to a minor-league deal with an invite to camp if he gets through the draft.

RHP Adam Miller, 26, (Indians): Drafted in the first round of the 2003 draft, Miller was Indian's top prospect for several seasons. He fell victim to a tendon problem in his finger that eventually required a transplant. Anyway, he's supposedly healthy and throwing in the Instructional league, and hitting the mitt in the lower nineties.

He hasn't thrown a pitch in a game since 2008, and he's a project. But Miller's a project with upside; if he gets another foot back on his fastball, he could be a mid-rotation arm. And hey, if you can take a chance on Andy Marte, how much could a roll of the dice on Miller hurt?

RHP Aneury Rodriguez
, 22, (Rays): Signed out of the Dominican Republic by the Colorado Rockies, Aneury Rodriguez debuted as a 17-year old in 2005 and was in full-season ball at age 19.

His arsenal of pitches is a low-90s fastball with a slider and work-in-progress change-up. But the heater is deceptive; in the past couple of years, it's more likely to sit in the upper eighties. His K ratio has dropped to about 7/game in that time, and this will be the second year he's been dangled as Rule 5 bait.

He's been mentioned as a guy on the Pirate radar, but that drop in velocity would be a red flag to us. Still, he could probably fit in as a back end rotation arm.


WilliamJPellas said...

Miller is clearly the guy of the three you mention here, 'twould seem to me.

Ron Ieraci said...

It's not really a very deep class this year, Wil; I'd agree that Miller is the most intriguing over the long haul. They could look at a reliever; there are a couple who are MLB ready as mid-inning guys.