Dodgers’ prospect Chris Reed throws six no-hit innings

chris_reed_spring_greencapEver since Chris Reed was overdrafted by the Dodgers in the 2011 MLB Draft, I haven’t been on his bandwagon. Last year, I noticed his solid performance and ate just a small serving of crow.

Well, if his start to the 2014 is any predictor, I might be in line for huge plate of crow before too long. But I’m still skeptical about his long-term success.

Reed threw six innings of no-hit ball in Chattanooga on Wednesday for the Lookouts. He struck out nine batters while he walked three. He also posted a 6-3 ground out-to-flyout ratio. On the season, he has a 1.02 ERA, 0.85 WHIP, 3.63 FIP and has 22 strikeouts in 17 2/3 innings. Last season, he started getting more ground balls (2.19 GO/AO) and fewer strikeouts (10.0 K/9). Yes, his ERA is out-performing his FIP significantly right now, but he’s still off to a solid start.

If Reed has indeed found his strikeout stuff again, coupled with a solid groundball rate, there’s a chance he could make it as a starter. There aren’t a ton of sinkerballing lefties who can strike hitters out (Chris Sale — a player Reed was lazily compared to by draft pundits and Internet folk — comes to mind). It’s a small chance, but a chance nonetheless.

Reed is anchoring the Lookouts’ rotation, along with Carlos Frias and Andres Santiago. They’re performing relatively well, and they’re going to need to because there isn’t a ton of offensive potential at Double-A right now.

The odds are against Reed making it as a starter — as they are against a lot of minor-league starters who have reliever profiles. We’ll see if he can keep it up. If he does, then he becomes a valuable trade chip come July — something that would probably work out best for all parties involved.

Reed, Schebler and Lee, Pederson head Lookouts, Isotopes roster

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The Dodgers even have these guys bunt on the back fields. Exhibit A: Casio Grider. (By: Dustin Nosler)

The Dodgers’ Double- and Triple-A affiliates announced their opening day rosters on Monday and Tuesday (respectively). Like the A-ball affiliates, there weren’t many surprises.

I did my best to project these rosters last week, and didn’t fare as well as I did last year. My Top 50 rankings are in parenthesis.

Chattanooga Lookouts

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Duke von Schamann (By: Dustin Nosler)

Pitchers
Pedro Baez (47)
Tyson Brummett
Eric Eadington
Carlos Frias (28)
Juan Gonzalez
Garrett Gould (41)
Jarret Martin (46)
Hector Nelo
Juan Noriega
Chris Reed (8)
Andres Santiago (40)
Craig Stem
Michael Thomas
Duke von Schamann (18)

Catchers
J.C. Boscan
Chris O’Brien
Alberto Rosario

Infielders
Erisbel Arruebarrena (will join the team in 3-4 weeks)
Aaron Bates
O’Koyea Dickson (31)
Osvaldo Martinez
Daniel Mayora
Angelo Songco
Darnell Sweeney (25)

Outfielders
Noel Cuevas (24)
Jon Garcia (37)
Casio Grider
Jeremy Hazelbaker
Scott Schebler (13)

Prediction: 12 of 25 (13, if you count Arruebarrena)

Biggest surprise: Hazelbaker not going to Triple-A

Best prospect: Reed (but not really)

Projected lineup
Sweeney 2B
Cuevas CF
Schebler LF
Dickson 1B
Songco DH
Garcia RF
O’Brien C
Mayora 3B
Martinez SS

Projected rotation
Reed
von Schamann
Santiago
Frias
Gould

Albuquerque Isotopes

pederson_joc ST 3.13.14

Joc Pederson (By: Dustin Nosler)

Pitchers
Sam Demel
Jose Dominguez (12)
Steve Edlefsen
Stephen Fife
Yimi Garcia (16)
Josh Judy
Zach Lee (3)
Matt Magill (10)
Daniel Moskos
Red Patterson
Steve Smith
Henry Sosa
Justin Souza

Catchers
Griff Erickson (DL)
Tim Federowicz
Miguel Olivo

Infielders
Ryan Adams
Brendan Harris
Walter Ibarra
Clint Robinson
Miguel Rojas
Jamie Romak

Outfielders
Nick Buss
Brian Cavazos-Galvez
Joc Pederson (2)
Trayvon Robinson

Prediction: 17 of 25

Biggest surprise: No Alex Guerrero, but only because he’s hurt

Best prospect: Pederson

Projected lineup
Buss RF
Pederson CF
Cavazos-Galvez DH
C. Robinson 1B
Federowicz C
T. Robinson LF
Romak 3B
Harris 2B
Rojas SS

Projected rotation
Fife
Magill
Lee
Patterson
Sosa

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There isn’t a ton of talent at the Double-A level — the most telling level for any prospect. The guy to watch there is Arruebarrena, but he’s going to spend a few weeks back in extended spring training at the Dodgers’ complex in Glendale.

The Isotopes might have their most talented team in years, with Pederson and Lee (called it) leading the way. Both of these rosters should be pretty fluid with guys coming up and and going down, as well as some getting to the majors.

Buss, Fife, Reed among first 10 cut in Dodgers’ camp

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Stephen Fife is taking his specs to Albuquerque. (By: Dustin Nosler)

The Dodgers announced their first round of camp cuts on Tuesday morning with few surprises.

Optioned (5)
Pedro Baez, Chili Buss, Stephen Fife, Yimi Garcia, Jarret Martin

Reassigned to minor-league camp (5)
Sam Demel, Griff Erickson, Daniel Moskos, Chris O’Brien, Chris Reed

Dodgers
Mariners
12:05pm PT
Glendale, Ariz.
RF
Puig
SS
Miller
LF
Crawford
3B
Seager
DH
Ramirez
LF
Romero
CF
Ethier
1B
Smoak
C
Ellis
DH
Morrison
3B
Uribe
RF
Gillespie
1B
Robinson
CF
Jones
SS
Turner
C
Zunino
2B
Figgins
2B
Marte
P
Wilson
 
P
Hernandez

The difference between being optioned and being reassigned is guys who were optioned are on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, while the reassigned guys were non-roster invitees.

The most surprising — and it wasn’t that surprising – cut to me was Moskos, a lefty who had four strikeouts in two innings of work early in spring. It was pretty much assumed the prospect guys (Baez, Martin, Garcia) would get the axe, but I’m a little surprised to see Fife gone so quickly. Yes, the Dodgers have 74 starting pitching options, but Fife lasted much longer in last year’s camp.

One surprising non-cut was Ross Stripling, who is awaiting the results of the MRI on his elbow. He had the initial test on Friday and has presumably gone to Los Angeles to visit Dr. Neal ElAttrache for a second opinion. Once the test reveals the results — torn UCL or no — I’d expect him to be reassigned.

Zach Lee has yet to throw a pitch in a spring training game, so the Dodgers probably want to get him some action before he is reassigned later in the spring.

With Erickson and O’Brien going down, the battle for the third catcher is among J.C. Boscan, Drew Butera and Miguel Olivo. Three enter, one survives … to play in Albuquerque. Seriously, they’ll probably all end up in Albuquerque. Yes, Butera has to go through waivers because he’s out of options, but what team in its right mind would pick him up?

The Dodgers’ roster now sits at 48 players, including Scott Elbert, who is destined for the 60-day disabled list… eventually (hat tip to Eric Stephen).

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The backups for Tuesday’s game against the Mariners and Felix Hernandez, who is making his spring debut, are as follows: Mike Baxter (LF), Tim Federowicz (C), Dee Gordon (2B), Brendan Harris (3B), Joc Pederson (CF), Miguel Rojas (SS) and Scott Van Slyke (1B).

The pitchers for today’s “bullpen game” have yet to be announced. Brian Wilson is starting, which is fun.